Calligrapha alni

Russet Alder Leaf Beetle

Calligrapha alni, Russet Alder Leaf Beetle photo

Family: Chrysomelidae

Subfamily: Chrysomelinae

Length: 7 - 9 mm


This member of the Leaf Beetle family feeds on the Alders that are so common along streams. Like other members of the genus Calligrapha, this species has intricate markings that resemble hieroglyphics.

The Russet Alder Leaf Beetle is a northern species; the map below shows the provinces and states with records of the species.

Robertson (1966) reported that in some colonies the two sexes were present in roughly equal numbers, but that another colony yielded 3 males and 52 females, while yet another was home to 4 males and 12 females. In some species of Calligrapha males are unknown, and these species reproduce by parthenogenesis. In the case of Calligrapha alni a parthenogenetic colony may exist side-by-side with a colony that has both males and females and reproduces sexually.

Photo data: 23 July 2007. Brule River State Forest, Douglas County, Wisconsin.

The map below, from 2012, shows the states and provinces with records of C. alni.

Calligrapha alni range map