Contents: By Damage and Image
In progress
Contents: Alphabetical
alder flea beetle
aphid management
apple and thorn skeletonizer
apple ermine moth
ash whitefly new
azalea bark scale
azalea lace bug
azalea sawfly new
bark lice
Barypeithes root weevil updated
Beneficial nematodes
biocontrol of root weevils
birch aphid updated
black bean aphid new
black cherry aphids new
black stem borer
bluegum psyllid
branch and twig borer
brown marmorated stink bug

bronze birch borer
boxwood leafminer
boxwood psyllid updated
bulb flies
cabbage whitefly new
carnation tortrix new
carpet beetle (images)
Calligraph californica

Ceanothus stem gall moth
cereal leaf beetle
cherry ermine moth
chilli thrips
cinnabar moth
clay colored weevil
cottony camellia scale
cypress tip moth
dogwood sawfly
Douglas fir sawfly
Douglas fir twig weevil
dustywings new
elm leafminer
European pine shoot moth
European wool carder bee
emerald ash borer
Fall webworm
flatheaded cedar borer
ground beetle gallery new
hollyhock weevil
honeylocust plant bug
honeylocust pod gall midge
Heliothis phloxiphaga
holly bud moth
huckleberry root aphids
ground mealybug
Japanese beetle new
lacewings new
lady beetle gallery updated
leaf weevil
light brown apple moth
maple aphids updated
maple tip moth
maple midge
March flies updated
mountain ash sawfly
Narcissus bulb fly updated
Natural enemies gallery new
spruce twig aphid
oak ambrosia beetle
oak slug
oak twig gall wasp new
obscure root weevil
Pacific flatheaded borer
peach tree borer
peach twig borer
pear blight beetle updated
pear psylla
pear leaf-curling midge
pear sawfly
pine needle scale
pine and cone spittlebug new
poplar and willow borer
Psyllopsis fraxinicola updated
rose curculio weevil
rose midge
rove beetle gallery new
sequoia pitch moth
soldier beetle galleryn new
snakefly gallery new
speckled green fruitworm
meadow spittlebug updated
tent caterpillars
viburnum leaf beetle
violet gall midge
western poplar clearwing
western spotted cucumber beetle
white pine weevil updated
woolly ash aphid
woolly beech aphid updated

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Alder flea beetle

Alder flea beetle, Macrohaltica ambiens (= Altica ambiens), is a chrysomelid beetle which can skeletonize the leaves of its host trees. Both adults and larvae feed on the foliage. There is one generation a year. The adult beetles overwinter in the duff at the base of the plants. They emerge in the late spring/summer (mid-June in 2007 and as early as the beginning of May in 2013), mate, and lay their eggs on the undersides of the leaves. The larvae appear shortly after, reaching maturity in August. The larvae then drop and pupate in pupal chambers in the soil below the leaf litter. The pupal stage lasts about 10 days. The adults emerge and feed on the leaves in August.

Alder is listed as the main host of this plant. Although management in landscapes is probably not required, nursery growers might approach alder flea beetle management similar to management of other skeletonizing flea beetles such as elm leaf beetle. Researchers (Alfaro et al. 1981) have found that western red cedar leaf oil also showed antifeedant activity with the alder flea beetle.

Web links:

Alfaro, RI, Pierce, HD Jr., Borden, JH., Oehlschlager, AC. 1981. Insect feeding and oviposition deterrents from western red cedar foliage. 1981 Jan;7(1):39-48. doi: 10.1007/BF00988634. <accessed 4 April 2016>

One of the most informative websites on this beetle is the website, Alder leaf beetle management, from Forest Health Protection and State Forestry Organizations


Original publication: June 2007
Last update: 4-4-2016

Author: R.L. Rosetta, Extension Nursery Integrated Pest Management, Department of Horticulture, Oregon State University


Alder damaged by alder flea beetle - note damage starting at base of tree
alder damaged by alder flea beetle
Alder flea beetle damage
alder flea beetle damage
Alder flea beetle damage
alder flea  beetle damage
Fully skeletonized leaves as a result of flea beetle feeding
skeletonized alder leaves
Alder flea beetle larvae feeding on leaf underside
alder flea beetle larvae
Closeup of alder flea beetle larva
alder flea beetle larva and damage
Alder flea beetle adult
alder flea beetle adult
Website editor:
Robin Rosetta

Page last modified 4/4/16


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