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Strawberry Root Weevils

Jeffrey Hahn, Extension Entomologist

Strawberry root weevils are common now -
 don't confuse them for bed bugs
Jeff Hahn, Univ. of Minnesota Extension

A strawberry root weevil, Otiorhynchus ovatus, is a common insect during July and August. It is small, 1/4th inch long, and dark brown to black. It is pear-shaped or light bulb-shaped with a short broad snout. It also has rows of punctures on its wing covers. A strawberry root weevil cannot fly.

As a larva, a strawberry root weevil feeds on the roots of a variety of plants, including, arborvitae, spruce, and strawberries. As an adult, it feeds on the edge of leaves. Strawberry root weevils sometimes can accidentally enter homes and other buildings. It is common to find them around sources of moistures, such as sinks and tubs. They do not cause any damage and are just a nuisance. In most cases, people see only a few weevils but there are times where homes can be plagued by large numbers of strawberry root weevils.

In addition to being a nuisance, strawberry root weevils are sometimes confused for bed bugs causing much consternation until the insect is correctly identified. A bed bug is more round in shape and lacks the snout and the punctures on its back that a strawberry root weevil possesses. It is always a good idea to have an insect correctly identified by an expert if it is suspected to be a bed bug. Strawberry root weevils are also sometimes confused as ticks because the antennae looks like a pair of legs.

Physical removal is the only necessary control. Strawberry root weevils will eventually go away on their own. For more information, see Home-invading weevils.
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