Pepper weevil

Anthonomus eugenii

A complete generation requires 20 to 30 days, depending on weather. Under insectary conditions in California, up to eight generations have been produced in a single year, but three to five generations is probably normal in most locations. The adults are long-lived and produce overlapping generations, so it is difficult to ascertain generation number accurately. In central Florida, adults are common from March until June, reflecting the availability of peppers, but a few can be found throughout the year except in December and January. Adults overwinter, but only where food is available, because diapause does not occur in this species.
Eggs: Oviposition may commence within two days of mating. The eggs are white when first deposited, but soon turn yellow. They are oval in shape and measure 0.53 mm in length and 0.39 mm in width. Eggs are deposited singly beneath the surface of the bud or pod. The female creates an egg cavity with her mouthparts before depositing the egg, and seals the puncture containing the egg with a light brown fluid that hardens and darkens. Females deposit eggs at a rate of about five to seven eggs per day, and fecundity averages 341 eggs but is nearly 600 in some individuals. The mean incubation period is 4.3 days, with a range of three to five days.
Larvae: There are three instars. The larvae are white to gray in color, with a yellowish brown head. They lack thoracic legs and have few large hairs or bristles. Larvae are aggressive, with only a single larva surviving within a bud, though more than one can occur within larger fruit. First instars measure about 1 mm in length (range 0.8-1.5 mm). Second instars measure about 1.9 mm in length (range 1.3 to 2.6 mm). Third instars measure about 3.3 mm (range 2.2 to 5.0 mm). Mean development time of the larvae is about 1.7, 2.2, and 8.4 days for instars 1, 2 and 3, respectively. The figure for third instar development time contains a prepupal period of about 4.9 days, during which the larva creates a pupal cell from anal secretions.
Pupa: The pupal cell is brittle and found within the blossom or fruit. The pupa resembles the adult in form, except that the wings are not fully developed and large setae are found on the prothorax and abdomen. The pupa is white when first formed, but eventually becomes yellowish with brown eyes. Mean duration of the pupal stage is 4.7 days (range three to six days).
Adult: The adult emerges from the pupal case three to four days after being formed. A clean, round hole marks the escape of the beetle from the bud or fruit. The blackish beetle is oval in shape and varies from 2.0 to 3.5 mm in length and 1.5 to 1.8 mm in width. The body is strongly arched and with a long, stout beak as is typical for this genus. The thorax and elytra are mostly covered with small scales. The antennae are long and markedly expanded at the tip. Each femora bears a sharp tooth. The color is dark mahogany to nearly black. Feeding begins immediately after emergence. Males produce an aggregation pheromone that attracts both sexes.

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