beneficial insect popping up in many area gardens
is the Soldier beetle, also called the Pennsylvania
Leather-wing. This soft-bodied beetle is about 1/2"
long, with an elongated body, golden or yellowish-brown
in color and has black markings on the legs, head,
underside and rear abdomen section.
are likely to find soldier beetles on and near linden
trees, which flower in June.
adults feed on pollen, flower nectar and other small
insects while the larva feed on small caterpillars,
grasshopper eggs and other beetles. Their eggs are
laid in the soil and the whitish, flattened and hairy
larvae feed at the surface of the soil. There are
two generations of Soldier beetle per season.
beetles do not bite or sting. Simply brush them away.
numbers of beneficial predatory insects can usually
be found in areas or on plants with high populations
of harmful insects like aphids. When the harmful insects
are gone, the predatory insects will leave also. Before
applying insecticide in the garden, be sure to identify
the target insects first so that beneficial garden
helpers are preserved.
Garden Insects. For more information, visit Horticulture