The Cherry Elephant Is A Pest With A Long Nose. Control Methods. Photo

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The Cherry Elephant Is A Pest With A Long Nose. Control Methods. Photo
The Cherry Elephant Is A Pest With A Long Nose. Control Methods. Photo

The cherry elephant, sometimes called the cherry weevil, is very wary and flies away or falls to the ground in the grass when it senses a person's approach. Therefore, it is very rare to see a beetle crawling on the leaves of cherry trees in our gardens.

The cherry weevil is a dangerous pest of fruit crops. It damages mainly cherries and cherries, less often plums and other members of the genus. The harm lies in damage to the kidneys, ovaries and fruits. When released in large numbers (outbreak), cherry weevil can destroy the entire crop.

The distribution area of ​​the cherry elephant is extensive and coincides with the distribution of various types of cherry, sweet cherry, plum, apricot, hawthorn and cherry plum. It covers the middle and southern part of Europe, the Western and Eastern Mediterranean, Central Asia.

Cherry elephant, or Cherry weevil (Epirhynchites auratus)
Cherry elephant, or Cherry weevil (Epirhynchites auratus)

Cherry elephant lifestyle

The cherry weevil overwinters in the soil. In early spring, but a little later than the apple blossom beetle, they emerge from the ground and begin to populate cherry trees. They appear in bulk during the cherry blossom period. First, they feed on the buds, buds, flowers, and then on the leaves and ovaries of cherry.

In the ovaries, weevils eat out the spongy holes or eat them completely. When individual cherries are just beginning to be colored, female beetles begin to lay their eggs. In the pulp of the fruit, they gnaw holes to the very bone in order to lay the egg in its still soft shell. Then the hole in the green cherry is closed from the outside with a cork of excrement and fruit stubs, and an annular groove is eaten out around the hole.

After one to two weeks, larvae hatch from the eggs, which gnaw a hole in the still unhardened bone. Having penetrated inside, they feed on its core for about a month. By the time the cherries ripen, the larvae finish feeding and, leaving the berries, fall to the ground and climb into the soil to a depth of 5-14 cm. Some of them pupate and, in the fall, turn first into pupae and then into beetles. But the beetles do not crawl out to the surface, and remain to winter in their pupal cradles until spring. A certain number of larvae overwinter and turn into beetles next spring or even only in autumn.

Cherry weevil on a blackthorn fruit
Cherry weevil on a blackthorn fruit

Control measures for cherry weevil

  • Loosening and digging up the soil in the near-stem circles in autumn or early spring during the formation of pupae will noticeably reduce the number of the latter.
  • Removal of old bark and whitewashing of boles with lime mortar leads to a significant decrease in the number of cherry weevils.
  • In the spring, from the moment the buds open to the beginning of the formation of the ovary, it is advisable to shake off the beetles on the litter and destroy them every morning, when the air temperature is below + 10 ° C. The branches are struck lightly with poles, the ends of which are wrapped in burlap.
  • You can apply approved chemicals immediately after cherry blossoms and again after a week.
  • Treatment is carried out: biological pesticides, pyrethroids, neonicotinoids.
  • Attracting insectivorous birds helps to reduce the number of cherry elephants.
  • When harvesting, be sure to place a cloth or paper on the bottom of the container you are using. After a day, larvae of weevils will accumulate at the bottom, which must be collected and destroyed.

In the preparation, materials were used by L.G. Lukyanova, a scientist agronomist, honored worker of agriculture. N. Novgorod.

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