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Coconut beetles


Plantking165
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This morning I found a large brown beetle with a horn i looked it up its a rhino beetle I know they attack coconut palms he burrowed into the ground quickly so I couldn't get a picture or get to him so he escaped. Do yall think they would be a threat to my 3 coconut palms if they are just in the yard? Here is the hole he dug and he looked something like this pic I found on tbe internet. I also found a medium sized black beetle on my coconut this morning he flew off tho but I don't think that one was of importance.

20220726_120421.jpg

Rhino-beetle.jpg

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11 minutes ago, Plantking165 said:

This morning I found a large brown beetle with a horn i looked it up its a rhino beetle I know they attack coconut palms he burrowed into the ground quickly so I couldn't get a picture or get to him so he escaped. Do yall think they would be a threat to my 3 coconut palms if they are just in the yard? Here is the hole he dug and he looked something like this pic I found on tbe internet. I also found a medium sized black beetle on my coconut this morning he flew off tho but I don't think that one was of importance.

20220726_120421.jpg

Rhino-beetle.jpg

Since Beetles in several Genera can look similar, you'll have to get a 100% accurate id to be certain the Beetle in question is in fact the species that can attack coconuts ...or other palm species.. ( The "target" species isn't yet documented  anywhere  in FL. ) 

Species in the Genus Strategus, and Xyloryctes  would be my first, casual guess since they'd be the most commonly encountered there.

While a few can utilize live plant tissue, larvae ( Grubs ) of most Rhino and related beetles in the Scarabaeidae  utilize decaying plant matter and play vital roles in breaking down organic material in the soil.  Adults prefer Nectar, Sap and decaying Fruit. https://www.nwf.org/Educational-Resources/Wildlife-Guide/Invertebrates/Rhinoceros-Beetles

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9 hours ago, Silas_Sancona said:

Since Beetles in several Genera can look similar, you'll have to get a 100% accurate id to be certain the Beetle in question is in fact the species that can attack coconuts ...or other palm species.. ( The "target" species isn't yet documented  anywhere  in FL. ) 

Species in the Genus Strategus, and Xyloryctes  would be my first, casual guess since they'd be the most commonly encountered there.

While a few can utilize live plant tissue, larvae ( Grubs ) of most Rhino and related beetles in the Scarabaeidae  utilize decaying plant matter and play vital roles in breaking down organic material in the soil.  Adults prefer Nectar, Sap and decaying Fruit. https://www.nwf.org/Educational-Resources/Wildlife-Guide/Invertebrates/Rhinoceros-Beetles

Ok so yeah what I saw was a type of rhino beetle there are several in my yard where they dig into the ground they haven't bothered my coconuts yet but I haven't had the Palms long either. I'll keep an eye out for suspicious damage. The specific rhino beetle that attacks coconuts isn't in Florida yet so that's good but that also doesn't mean these rhino beetles that are in Florida won't feed on them either.

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On 7/26/2022 at 3:22 PM, Silas_Sancona said:

Since Beetles in several Genera can look similar, you'll have to get a 100% accurate id to be certain the Beetle in question is in fact the species that can attack coconuts ...or other palm species.. ( The "target" species isn't yet documented  anywhere  in FL. ) 

Species in the Genus Strategus, and Xyloryctes  would be my first, casual guess since they'd be the most commonly encountered there.

While a few can utilize live plant tissue, larvae ( Grubs ) of most Rhino and related beetles in the Scarabaeidae  utilize decaying plant matter and play vital roles in breaking down organic material in the soil.  Adults prefer Nectar, Sap and decaying Fruit. https://www.nwf.org/Educational-Resources/Wildlife-Guide/Invertebrates/Rhinoceros-Beetles

This is what I've been seeing there are 10 holes in the yard where they've been and I found a dead one today here are some pics 

20220727_162644.jpg

20220727_162651.jpg

20220727_162658.jpg

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I hope the beetles you are seeing are not what I deal with here or what has killed so many palms in Guam.

My many coconut palms seem totally fine by the way.

I finally got the interest of a local APHIS representative here in Puerto Rico so we will see if they can help.

 

 

 

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Cindy Adair

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2 hours ago, Plantking165 said:

This is what I've been seeing there are 10 holes in the yard where they've been and I found a dead one today here are some pics 

20220727_162644.jpg

20220727_162651.jpg

20220727_162658.jpg


Don't see the distinguishing features of the Coconut Rhino on this Beetle..  Overall size is smaller, more round rather than elongated.. Pronotum ( = Head / Thorax section of the Beetle's body ) lacks the distinctive indentations seen on the iNat example below )  Elytron ( = Hard " shell " that covers the wings ) appears smooth,  lacking the " stippling " and length- wise lines that run the length of the Elytron.

iNat Coconut Rhino examples: Note the overall body shape, indentations on the Pronotum:  https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/125749087   

https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/126341967


Zeroing in more, still thinking the beetles you're seeing are Strategus, particularly, Smooth OX Beetle, Strategus antaeus..  rather than the other Strategus species  ( S. aloeus ) that also lives there in FL.  Appears Eastern Rhino Beetles aren't common in the state, so that eliminates them.

Smooth Ox Beetle: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/127671045

Aloeus Ox: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/127527078

Here is a general write up about Ox Beetles ( focus on S. aloeus in the article )

https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/galveston/beneficials/beneficial-44_ox_or_elephant_beetle.htm

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