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Genus Tetraopes - Milkweed Longhorns

Black and orange spotted beetle ?? - Tetraopes femoratus Red Milkweed Beetle - Tetraopes tetrophthalmus Tetraopes pilosus Chemsak - Tetraopes pilosus Milkweed Longhorns, mating pair - Tetraopes basalis - male - female Blackened Milkweed Beetle - Tetraopes melanurus - male - female Unknown - Tetraopes tetrophthalmus Red Milkweed Beetle - Tetraopes tetrophthalmus Milkweed Longhorn  - Tetraopes
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Coleoptera (Beetles)
Suborder Polyphaga (Water, Rove, Scarab, Long-horned, Leaf and Snout Beetles)
No Taxon (Series Cucujiformia)
Superfamily Chrysomeloidea (Long-horned and Leaf Beetles)
Family Cerambycidae (Long-horned Beetles)
Subfamily Lamiinae (Flat-Faced Longhorns)
Tribe Tetraopini
Genus Tetraopes (Milkweed Longhorns)
Other Common Names
Red Milkweed Beetle, Milkweed Borer
Explanation of Names
Tetraopes Dalman in Schönherr 1817
Greek tetra 'four' + ops 'eye' (each compound eye of the beetle is divided into two)
14-15 spp. in our area, 27 total(1)
Bright red to reddish orange with black spots longhorn beetles associated with milkweed (Asclepias species) or, in a few cases, related plants
Canada to Costa Rica; in our area, 3 spp. are eastern, the rest mostly western, with 7 restricted to sw. US(1)
Adults: Apr-Oct in TX (BG data)
Adults feed on leaves of milkweed (Asclepias); larvae feed externally on roots of host (root feeding is unique among Lamiinae). Each species (or subspecies) is associated with one or a few host species (an example of coevolution)(2)
Tetraopes species and their host plants, Asclepias

T. annulatus: ….........A. sullivantii, A. subverticillata, A. speciosa, A. tuberosa, A. verticillata, A. viridiflorus.
T. basalis: …...........A. eriocarpa, A. fascicularis, A. speciosa
T. discoideus: …........A. auriculata, A. curassavica, A. glaucescens, A. linaria, A. subverticillata, A. verticillata
T. femoratus: ….........A. fascicularis, A. hallii, A. hirtella, A. lemmonii, A. meadii, A. speciosa, A. syriaca, A. viridis,
T. huetheri: …..........A. verticillata
T. linsleyi: …..........A. linaria
T. mandibularis: …......A. latifolia
T. melanurus: ….........A. capricornis asperula, A. linaris, A. subverticillata, A. tuberosa
T. paracomes: .....Matelea quirosii
T. Pilosus: …............A. arenaria, A. tuberosa
T. quadrimaculatus: …....A. syriaca
T. quinquemaculatus: ....A. amplexicaulis, A. hirtella
T. sublaevis: …..........A. erosa
T. texanus: …............A. hirtella, A. viridiflora, A. viridis
T. tetrophthalmus: ….....A. syriaca
Cerambycidae of North America - Linsley and Chemsak
Life Cycle
One generation per year. Adults feed on milkweeds above ground. Larvae feed on roots.
Print References
Chemsak, J.A. 1963. Taxonomy and bionomics of the genus Tetraopes (Cerambycidae: Coleoptera). University of California Publications in Entomology 30(1): 1-90.
Chemsak, J.A., & F.A. Noguera. 2003. New species of the genus Tetraopes Schoenherr (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae). Pan-Pacific Entomologist 79: 237-244.
Farrell, B.D., 2001. Evolutionary assembly of the milkweed fauna: Cytochrome Oxidase I and the age of Tetraopes beetles. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 18(3): 467–478.
Farrell, B.D., & C. Mitter. 1998. The timing of insect/plant diversification: might Tetraopes (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) and Asclepias (Asclepiadaceae) have co-evolved? Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 63: 553–577.
Lawrence, W.S. 1982. Sexual dimorphism in between and within patch movements of a monophagous insect: Tetraopes (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae). Oecologia 53: 245-250.
Linsley E.G. and J.A. Chemsak. 1995. The Cerambycidae of North America. Part 7, No. 2: Taxonomy and Classification of the Subfamily Lamiinae, Tribes Acanthocinini through Hemilophini. University of California Press, Berkeley. 114: xi + 292 pp., 55 figs. (3)
Skillman F.W., Jr. 2007. A new species of Tetraopes Schoenherr (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae). Insecta Mundi 0008: 1-3 (Full text)
Internet References
North American Tetraopes spp. - Mike Quinn, 2009
Fact sheet - Colorado State U.(4)