Otiorhynchus singularis L Claycoloured weevil

The clay-coloured weevil is an important horticultural pest. Adults remove bark from trees and shrubs; sometimes, they also ring-bark shoots or stems and cause the death of plants. Attacks are often of considerable importance on young trees or new grafts. Adult weevils also attack leaves and petioles, and kill the buds of plants. The form and timing of damage vary from host to host. On currant and raspberry, for example, the petioles are partially severed; the leaves then, characteristically, keel over. Larvae sometimes cause damage to the roots of cultivated plants but are relatively unimportant (cf. Otiorhynchus sulcatus, below).


Adults of this mainly parthenogenetic weevil are active at night from April onwards; by day, they hide beneath soil mulches, in soil crevices and so on. The weevils will feed on various plants and often ascend young trees to browse on the young bark, buds and foliage. Eggs are laid in the summer, and the larvae later feed on plant roots, including those of various weeds. Fully grown larvae pupate in the spring, and new adults appear shortly afterwards. Some adults survive for more than a year.


Adult 6-7 mm long, strongly sculptured and shiny black but coated in dull, greyish-brown scales, giving an irregular, camouflage-like pattern; body often coated with mud. Larva up to 8 mm long; body plump and creamish-white; head brown.

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