Submitted to: The Coleopterists Bulletin
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/19/2009
Publication Date: 12/29/2009
Citation: Triplehorn, C.A., Thomas, D.B., Riley, E.G. 2009. The genus Eleodes eschscholtz (Coleoptera: tenebrionidae) in Texas. The Coleopterists Bulletin. 63:413-437. Interpretive Summary: False wireworms are beetle grubs that attack and destroy seedlings of planted wheat on farms in the northern and southern plains area of the central United States. There are so many species (around 235 in the US and Mexico) and with only subtle differences among them, even beetle experts have difficulty telling them apart. The present manuscript lists the 31 species found in Texas, with photographs of each, provides details on the features that differentiate the species and summarizes their biology and importance as agricultural pests.
Technical Abstract: False wireworms are larvae of the darkling beetle genus Eleodes Eschscholtz, some of which are agricultural pests of dryland wheat. Because of the large numbers of species in the genus (approximately 235), identifications can be problematic. Hence, regional keys are of great utility. Within the state of Texas, a total of 31 species are known to occur. Herein, we provide a key with illustrations and a brief diagnosis for the adult of each Texas species, along with notes on ecology, distribution and pest status.