|Rosemary Beetle (Chrysolina americana)|
Those of you who have read my recent posts will know that I have been keeping an eye on a clump of Nasturtiums. I was examining the plants this morning when my eye alighted on a small Ladybird-like beetle on the post above. I took a closer look and noticed some iridescent stripes of red. The creature looked most unusual.
The Rosemary Beetle was centimetres away from our old Ladybird house. According to the Royal Horticultural Society, this is the season for feeding, mating and the laying of eggs. Perhaps the insect was checking out the shelter we had provided.
These non-native beetles were first recorded in Britain in 1994. I have added this sighting to the RHS Rosemary Beetle Survey. I note that others have been found in Suffolk.
We do not actually have any Rosemary in our garden, but these creatures also eat Lavender.
This flaboyant beetle reminds me of the young Gerald Durrell's magical encounters with the Rose-beetle Man. I wonder what I will find in, on or around my Nasturtium patch next.