Helophorus porculus Bedel H rufipes Bosc dAntic Turnip mud beetles

Both species of turnip mud beetle are widely distributed but minor and sporadic pests of turnip and certain other brassicas (cabbage, kale and swede); they may also attack other plants, including beans and lettuce. Adults remove sections of tissue from within or around the edges of leaves. The larvae more frequently tunnel in the roots and stems, causing plants to rot.


Adults occur from June onwards, and eggs are deposited in the soil during July and August. The

Fig. 200 Pronotum of turnip mud beetle, Helophorus rufipes.

eggs hatch in the autumn and the larvae then attack suitable host plants. The larvae feed mainly within the stems and roots, and remain active throughout the winter. They are fully grown by March or early April. Each then pupates in a small earthen cell a short distance below the soil surface. There is just one generation annually.


Adult 4-5 mm long, mainly dirty yellow, marked irregularly with black; pronotum with an irregular, wart-like sculpturing (Fig. 200); elytra prominently ridged longitudinally. Helophorus rufipes is the slightly larger species and the anterior (humeral) angles of the elytra are dentate - they are rounded in H. porculus. Larva up to 8 mm long; body creamish-white, with brownish or blackish dorsal plates on the thoracic and abdominal segments; anal cerci present.

Family SILPHIDAE (burying beetles)

Aclypea opaca (L.)

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