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Flea Beetle - Phyllotreta zimmermanni

Flea Beetle - Phyllotreta zimmermanni
Springfield, Fairfax County, Virginia, USA
April 10, 2005
Size: 2-3mm
I found this tiny beetle among some groceries. The first clue that it's a flea beetle is the fact that it jumps, which made photographing it a nightmare. Every time I got it in focus, it would hop away. A search online makes me think it is a Phyllotreta species, though confirmation would be appreciated.

These are some other sites I found:

Moved from Phyllotreta.

Chrysomelidae: Phyllotreta zimmermanni
Color pattern fits P. zimmermanni very well, P. striolata would be the next best fit, but I would go with zimmermanni. Both are wide-spread eastern species, with both feeding primarily on crucifers (cabbage, mustards, radishes, etc.). Anyone who grows many vegetables will sooner or later encounter them.

Striped Flea Beetle
Phillip's link and the last two of your links mention Phyllotreta striolata. What Cedar Creek calls P. vittata is apparently a synonym of P. striolata (see bottom of this page). The photo I have of this species is no larger than the small images in this picture - very tiny but easy to recognize due to the prominent stripes.

Phyllotreta sp.
While similar, the stripes on my beetle look noticeably thinner than the stripes on P. striolata so it could be a different species. According to White (1), about half the species of genus Phyllotreta have yellowish elytral stripes, so I'll leave it at genus level for now.

Another resource
I'm not aware of an on-line list for Virginia, but the NC State Univ. collection website can be helpful to narrow things down. They list 4 spp. in their collection with representative specimans from NC - other spp. can of course occur, probably rarely though.

Looks good
Compare to this.

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