A blister beetle is a colorful, one inch to one-half inch long beetle that contains a chemical known as cantharidin in its body. The beetle’s body releases this chemical when the beetle dies. If the chemical touches human skin, a painful blister forms; hence the origin of the beetle’s name. Cantharidin remains stable long after the beetle dies, and it can kill livestock such as horses and cattle. Blister beetles are also dangerous to wild bees, which are important for plant pollination. Blister beetles do have some benefit in a garden in that the larvae kill grasshopper larvae.
- The blisters are only the beginning of the many problems that blister beetles cause. In this article you’ll learn about blister beetle control.
- The adult form of these skinny, long-legged insects feeds on plants while the larvae feed on the larvae of other insects.
- The toxin is stable long after the beetle dies, and it can kill livestock and horses when consumed in their hay or feed.
“In this “The beetles feed on a wide variety of vegetable and ornamental plants.”,” Vegetable” need to be “vegetables”.”