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UK Nature  > Beetles  > Lilioceris lilii

Scientific Name:   Lilioceris lilii
Common Name:   Scarlet Lily Beetle

Once very rare, Lilioceris lilii, or the Scarlet Lily Beetle, has in the last 30 years become widespread throughout the south east; rather more scattered through the West Country and Midlands to Yorkshire. Usually regarded as a pest by horticulturalists and gardeners, adults occur throughout the year, overwintering after emerging through the summer.

Adults and larvae feed on lilies (Lilium spp.) and Fritillaries (but not on Haemerocallis as is sometimes believed). Adults make small holes in the leaves while larvae feed from the base of the plant working upwards until, in extreme cases, the later instar larvae consume even buds and seed cases.

The mature orange larvae burrow several centimetres into the soil and pupate in silken cocoons, the adults emerging from May or June until late summer.
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