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CURCULIONIDAE (including Scolytinae and Platypodinae)

Common names

weevils, snout beetles, curculios, curculionids, scolytids, bark beetles, pinhole borers, platypodids, ambrosia beetles, etc.

General distribution


Component taxa

>4500 genera with >60,000 species


Adults: Overall, body is quite variable, from moderately flattened to greatly convex and compact globular to elongate subcylindrical forms. Head typically with well-demarcated elongate rostrum in most, but reduced in Entiminae, Scolytinae, Platypodinae and Cossoninae. Vestiture variable from simple setae or hairs to complex scale patterns and surface coloration with metallic hues, etc. Body length variable from 1-55mm, but typically around 20mm. Head variable, mostly compact and partially retracted into prothorax, eyes present or absent or variably developed. Antennae almost always geniculate (elbowed), funicle with 5-7 segments and terminal compact club composed of 1 or 3 segments. Mandibles typically visible and robust, in some with a noticeable scar or deciduous appendage. Ventral mouthparts sometimes concealed in some taxa. Procoxae are typically contiguous but may be separate in some. Majority with tarsal formula 5-5-5 (Raymondionyminae 4-4-4); tarsomere 4 typically small to minute and concealed in lobed tarsomere 3. Elytra typically entire, but in some can be somewhat abbreviated and exposing some or all of pygidium. First two visible abdominal segments typically fused.

Larva: Overall, body C-shaped, typically with simple setal vestiture, sometimes asperities or short stout spines present, soft-bodied with little sclerotization except head capsule which is often highly sclerotized. Length variable, ranging from 1-40mm. Head sometimes partially to moderately retracted into prothorax, with hypopharyngeal bracon present and gular sutures absent. Mandibles present and typically well-developed, mola absent. Antennae typically reduced to a single segment. Platypodinae with "chain-like" pattern on pronotum. Stemmata typically present, absent on Scolytinae. Legs absent. Abdominal segments 9 and 10 often with some sclerotization, often dorsal folds are present, but urogomphi absent.

Pest information

This family contains a large number of wood boring and agricultural pests as well as beneficial insects for biocontrol efforts. Wood borers are particularly prominent in the Scolytinae and Platypodinae, where the following genera have been recognized as having pestiferous species: Araptus, Tomicus, Coccotrypes, Dendroctonus, Dryocoetes, Hylastes, Hylastinus, Hylesinus, Hylurgus, Hypothenemus, Pagiocerus, Polygraphus, Tomicus, Xyleborus, and many more.


Key player modified February 2018
Contente last modified: February 4, 2011