Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Orig. Comb: Coccinella venusta Melsheimer
Neoharmonia venusta (Melsheimer)
1 sp. w/ 2 subspecies currently recognized (2)
N. v. venusta: TX-FL-ME-NE
N. v. ampla: AZ-TX
mostly May-June (BG data)
Psyllids, scales, insect eggs and larvae, (3)
especially beetle larvae
N. v. venusta are "major predators of larvae and pupae of the [Imported] willow leaf beetle Plagiodera versicolora (Laicharteg) in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. This is the first specialized coccinellid-chrysomelid predator-prey assoc. for the New World." (Whitehead and Duffield 1982)
Subspecies can be separated by range in most areas, but overlap in eastern Texas.
Gordon, 1985, especially pp. 834-839, figures 673, 667-668. (3)
Whitehead, D.R. and R.M. Duffield. 1982. An Unusual Specialized Predator Prey Association (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae, Chrysomelidae): Failure of a Chemical Defense and Possible Practical Application. The Coleopterists Bulletin, 36(1): 96-97.
- photos of N. v. venusta
feeding on pine needle scale and leaf beetle eggs.