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Species Coniatus splendidulus

Coniatus splendidulus Coniatus splendidulus Splendid tamarisk weevil? - Coniatus splendidulus Curculionid on Tamarix - Coniatus splendidulus Coniatus splendidulus Nevada weevil - Coniatus splendidulus Coniatus splendidulus? - Coniatus splendidulus Coniatus splendidulus? - Coniatus splendidulus
Classification
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 Curculionoidea (Snout and Bark Beetles)
Family Curculionidae (Snout and Bark Beetles)
Subfamily Hyperinae
Genus Coniatus
Species splendidulus (Coniatus splendidulus)
Other Common Names
Splendid Tamarisk Weevil
Explanation of Names
Coniatus (Bagoides) splendidulus (Fabricius 1781)
Size
~3 mm
Identification

Det. M. A. Quinn, 2015
Range
native to the Mediterranean, accidentally introduced in AZ (2006) and has spread across sw US (CA-TX-CO-NV) - Map (GBIF)
Habitat
Riparian Saltcedar groves
Food
host: Tamarix (Tamaricaceae)
Life Cycle
hyperine weevils pupate in an open silk cage on the outside of the leaf or stem of the host
Remarks
"A hyperine weevil which was under consideration for release as a biocontrol agent against tamarisk. However the release was not authorized due to conflict of interest between ranchers who want the tree controlled and the conservationists (in this case birders) who want to protect the preferred nesting site of the yellow bellied flycatcher. The USDA claims not to have released it from strict quarantine so it must have come in some other way. The tamarisk suck up the water to a great depth and kill off the other riparian trees, willow and cottonwoods for example, which are essential to the birds as they seek food among the latter. The problem is that the bird is endangered and prefers to nest in tamarisk which is not a natural community and which provides little food for the birds. It is a "Catch 22", but chance may have solved the dilemma." --C.W. O'Brien, pers. comm. to =v=