I’ve chosen this little green beetle as a Wednesday Wiggler because our garden is now full of them.
I’ve tried to find and hunt out information on them over the past couple of days so that I can decide if I need to worry about these little bugs eating our veggies.
They’re a metallic green, about 4mm long with the women slightly longer at about 7mm. The female also has a swollen black abdomen prior to egg laying during the mating season which lasts from March to October.
The adult’s life span is only a couple of months but they can hibernate over winter.
As their name suggests Green Dock Beetles feed almost exclusively on dock and sorrel but if these are not available to them or are in short supply they will eat from the cabbage family (Brassicaceae) as well as the borage, violet and buckwheat families. These choices would not be high on their menu though as their larvae will not fully develop if they feed on these plants.
This is a great example of why we should encourage all types of wildlife into our gardens to prevent a build up of any one type of insect. The green dock beetle’s natural predators are insectivores (such as birds and frogs) and parasites.
By regularly feeding birds, planting hedges, building ponds and not keeping our gardens overly tidy we can encourage a diverse range of wildlife and create a natural balance.
If you have a smaller suburban garden you may be thinking that’s all so very well but not feasible. I suspect however, that the little green beetle may be more rampant in a rural garden due to the abundance of food sources in the countryside.