Friday Beetle Blogging: The Hollyhock Weevil

Rhopalapion longirostre – the Hollyhock Weevil
Urbana, Illinois

The hollyhock weevil is, I believe, the very first beetle in the family Brentidae we’ve featured as part of our Friday series. Rhopalapion longirostre is an introduced European insect that feeds on hollyhocks, a common summer-flowering ornamental that, like its beetle pest, is also introduced. Some neighbors have a stand of these just up the road, and every time I look they are covered in cute little grey weevils (perhaps not coincidentally, the flowers don’t look all that great…)

The female picture here is laying an egg into a flower bud. If you look carefully, you should be able to see the ovipositor sticking into the plant tissue from the tip of her abdomen.

Photo details: Canon EOS 7D camera
Canon MP-E 65mm 1-5x macro lens
ISO 100, f13, 1/250 sec, diffused flash

2 thoughts on “Friday Beetle Blogging: The Hollyhock Weevil”

  1. James C. Trager

    I have good childhood memories associated with hollyhocks, and the old-fashioned “single” ones resultingly are my favorite non-native plant. I can’t begrudge this beetle for loving them, too, but it sure does ruin a lot of seeds and disfigure them.

  2. Marilyn Weakley

    There are literally100’s of small brownish insects all over my hollyhocks (a little smaller than a ladybug). They are all over the stalks and leaves. They are not the hollyhock weevils and so far I have been unable to find out what they are. Does anyone have any idea?

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