Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Limonius californicus
(sugarbeet wireworm)



Limonius californicus (sugarbeet wireworm)


  • Last modified
  • 19 November 2019
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Pest
  • Natural Enemy
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Limonius californicus
  • Preferred Common Name
  • sugarbeet wireworm
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Arthropoda
  •       Subphylum: Uniramia
  •         Class: Insecta
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • L. californicus is not reported to be invasive.
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  • Distribution map More information

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Limonius californicus (Mannerheim)

Preferred Common Name

  • sugarbeet wireworm

Other Scientific Names

  • Cardiophorus californicus Mannerheim
  • Pheletes californicus (Mannerheim)

International Common Names

  • English: wireworm; wireworm, sugarbeet

EPPO code

  • LIMOCF (Pheletes californicus)

Summary of Invasiveness

Top of page L. californicus is not reported to be invasive.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Arthropoda
  •             Subphylum: Uniramia
  •                 Class: Insecta
  •                     Order: Coleoptera
  •                         Family: Elateridae
  •                             Genus: Limonius
  •                                 Species: Limonius californicus

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Last updated: 23 Apr 2020

Growth Stages

Top of page Pre-emergence, Seedling stage, Vegetative growing stage

List of Symptoms/Signs

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SignLife StagesType
Roots / external feeding
Roots / internal feeding
Seeds / external feeding
Seeds / internal feeding
Stems / internal feeding
Whole plant / cut at stem base

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Carabidae Predator Adults/Eggs/Larvae
Metarhizium anisopliae Pathogen Larvae

Plant Trade

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Plant parts liable to carry the pest in trade/transportPest stagesBorne internallyBorne externallyVisibility of pest or symptoms
Bulbs/Tubers/Corms/Rhizomes larvae Yes Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye
Growing medium accompanying plants eggs; larvae Yes Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye
Roots eggs; larvae Yes Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye
Plant parts not known to carry the pest in trade/transport
Fruits (inc. pods)
Seedlings/Micropropagated plants
Stems (above ground)/Shoots/Trunks/Branches
True seeds (inc. grain)

Wood Packaging

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Wood Packaging not known to carry the pest in trade/transport
Loose wood packing material
Processed or treated wood
Solid wood packing material with bark
Solid wood packing material without bark


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Arnett RH, 1971. The beetles of the United States (A manual for identification). Michigan, USA: The American Entomological Institute.

Arnett RH, 2000. American insects. A handbook of the insects of America north of Mexico. Boca Raton, USA: CRC Press, 706.

Banham FL; Arrand JC, 1978. Recognition and life history of the major insect and allied pests of vegetables in British Columbia. Canada: British Columbia Department of Agriculture Publication, 78-18.

Berry RE, 1998. Insects and Mites of Economic Importance in the Northwest, 2nd Edn. Oregon, USA: Oregon State University, 221 pp.

Bousquet Y (ed.), 1991. Checklist of beetles of Canada and Alaska. Publication - Agriculture Canada (English ed.), No. 1861/E:vi + 430 pp.

Brooks AR, 1960. Adult Elateridae of southern Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba (Coleoptera). Canadian Entomologist, 92 (supplement 20).

Campbell JM; Sarazin MJ; Lyons DB, 1989. Canadian beetles (Coleoptera) injurious to crops, ornamentals, stored products, and buildings. Ottawa, Ontario, Canada; Agricultural Canada, 491 pp.

Davidson RH; Lyon WF, 1987. Insect pests of farm, garden, and orchard. Insect pests of farm, garden, and orchard., Ed. 8:xiii + 640pp.; many ref.

Elmore JC, 1954. Treatment of bean seed for the control of the seed-corn maggot. Journal of Economic Entomology, 46(6):1054-1059.

EPPO, 1990. Specific quarantine requirements. EPPO Technical Documents, No. 1008. Paris, France: European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization.

EPPO, 2014. PQR database. Paris, France: European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization.

Essig EO, 1958. Insects and Mites of Western North America. New York, USA: The MacMillan Co.

Fouche C; Brunmeier D; Rogers W; Noriega J, 1999. Evaluation of CGA293343 for control of sugarbeet wireworms in watermelon, 1998. Arthropod Management Tests, 24:190.

Gibson KE, 1939. Wireworm damage to potatoes in the Yakima Valley of Washington. Journal of Economic Entomology, 32(1):121-124.

Gibson KE; Lane MC; Cook WC; Jones EW, 1958. Effect of some crop rotations on wireworm populations in irrigated lands. Technical Bulletin of the US Department of Agriculture, No. 1172.

Glen R, 1950. Larvae of the elaterid beetles of the tribe Lepturoidini (Coleoptera: Elateridae). Smithsonian Miscellaneous Collections, 111(11).

Graf JE, 1914. A preliminary report on the sugar-beet wireworm. Washington DC, USA: Bureau of Entomology, US Department of Agriculture, Bulletin No. 123.

Gratwick M, 1992. Crop pests in the UK: collected edition of MAFF leaflets. Crop pests in the UK: collected edition of MAFF leaflets., x + 490 pp.; [Co-published with Van Nostrand Reinhold, Inc., New York, USA].

Hill DS, 1987. Agricultural insect pests of temperate regions and their control. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Hyslop JA, 1921. Genotypes of the elaterid beetles of the world. Proceedings of the US National Museum, 58:621-680.

Jacobson M; Lilly CE; Harding C, 1968. Sex attractant of sugarbeet wireworm: identification and biological activity. Science (New York), 159(3811):208-210.

Jansson RK; Seal DR, 1994. Biology and management of wireworms on potato. In: Zehender GW, Powelson ML, Jansson RK, Raman KV, eds. Advances in Potato Pest Management. Minnesota, USA: APS Press, 31-53.

Lanchester HP, 1947. Larval determination of six economic species of Limonius (Coleoptera: Elateridae). Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 39(4):619-626.

Lilly CE; McGinnis AJ, 1968. Quantitative response of males of Lomonius californicus (Coleoptera: Elateridae) to female sex pheromone. Canadian Entomologist, 100 (10):1071-1078.

McCaffrey JP; Williams L III; Borek V; Brown PD; Morra MJ, 1995. Toxicity of ionic thiocyanate-amended soil to the wireworm Limonius californicus (Coleoptera: Elateridae). Journal of Economic Entomology, 88(4):793-797

McCauley VJE; Zacharuk RY; Tinline RD, 1968. Histopathology of green muscardine in larvae of four species of Elateridae (Coleoptera). Journal of Invertebrate Pathology, 12(3):444-459.

Onsager JA, 1969. Sampling to detect economic infestations of Limonius spp. Journal of Economic Entomology, 62 (1):183-189.

Onsager JA; Maitlen JC, 1966. Susceptibility of wireworms to aldrin in eastern Washington. Journal of Economic Entomology, 59(5):1120-1123.

Onsager JA; Rusk HW, 1969. Potency of residues of some nonpersistent insecticides in soil against wireworms. Journal of Economic Entomology, 62(5):1060-1064.

Radcliffe EB; Flanders KL; Ragsdale DW; Noetzel DM, 1991. Pest management systems for potato insects. In: Pimentel D, ed. CRC Handbook of Pest Management in Agriculture. Volume III. Baton Rouge, USA: CRC Press Inc, 587-595.

Scott DR; Carpenter GP, 1971. Wireworm control on potatoes in Idaho with side-dressed and broadcast insecticides. Journal of Economic Entomology, 64(4):945-948.

Stone MW, 1943. The effect of winter soil temperatures on emergence of adults of the sugar-beet wireworm in cages. Journal of Economic Entomology, 36(4):510-515.

Toba HH; Campbell JD, 1992. Wireworm (Coleoptera: Elateridae) survey in wheat-growing areas of northcentral and northeastern Oregon. Journal of the Entomological Society of British Columbia, 89:25-30

Toba HH; Pike KS; O'Keeffe LE, 1988. Carbosulfan, fonofos, and lindane wheat seed treatments for control of sugarbeet wireworm. Journal of Agricultural Entomology, 5(1):35-43

Toba HH; Turner JE, 1981. Comparison of four methods of applying insecticides for control of wireworms on potatoes. Journal of Economic Entomology, 74(3):259-265

Van Dyke EC, 1932. Miscellaneous studies in the Elateridae and related families of Coleoptera. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences 4th series, 20:291-465.

Williams L III; Schotzko DJ; McCaffrey JP, 1992. Geostatistical description of the spatial distribution of Limonius californicus (Coleoptera: Elateridae) wireworms in the northwestern United States, with comments on sampling. Environmental Entomology, 21(5):983-995

Distribution Maps

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