A species of leaf beetle

Chrysomela populi

preview hoet 00024 chrysomela populi pappelblattkaeferThis beetle is a species of leaf beetles belonging to the family Chrysomelidae. It’s German name „Pappelblattkäfer“ emphasizes its habitat: It lives on poplars and pastures, whose leafs build its main food.

But the leafs of these trees offer more than just food to the insect. They contain Salicylic acid enabling the beetle to produce an unpleasantly stinging smelling secretion, which helps to scare off certain enemies, like the predatory larvae of a type of hoverflies (or it tries at least …)