Latin name: Sciopithes obscurus
Reason for Concern:
1) Occur sporadically on berry crops.
2) Feed on foliage and can contaminate machine-harvested fruit.
3) Larvae (grubs) feed on the roots and weaken cane growth.
All weevil species are similar in habit and appearance. In larval stage, size is the only characteristic that distinguishes one species from another. Larvae are white, legless, "C" - shaped grubs that feed on roots during most of summer and winter. Obscure weevils are mid-sized. Adults are flightless, hard-shelled, and have long, downward curved mouthparts and elbowed antennae. The obscure weevil is gray or brown with wavy brown lines across its back near the rear. It is about 5 to 7 mm long (1/4”).
Although they can emerge as early as May, obscure root weevil adults generally emerge beginning in August and are more numerous from August to October. Their behavior varies from other root weevils. The adult sometimes remains in foliage rather than climbing down the plant trunk to hide during the day. Obscure root weevil lays its eggs inside a folded edge of the leaf. As larvae emerge from the eggs, they burrow into soil to feed on roots. Females can lay 8 eggs/ day, roughly equivalent to a black vine weevil.