Blister beetles: Description

Blister beetles: An adult gray blister beetle, Epicauta sp. (probable E. fabricii) [top]. An adult gray blister beetle, Epicauta sp. (probably E. fabricii) [top]. An adult margined blister beetle, Epicauta funebris [second from top]. An adult striped blister beetle, EpicaBlister beetles: An adult gray blister beetle, Epicauta sp. (probable E. fabricii) [top]. An adult gray blister beetle, Epicauta sp. (probably E. fabricii) [top]. An adult margined blister beetle, Epicauta funebris [second from top]. An adult striped blister beetle, Epicauta vittata [third from top]. An adult black blister beetle, Epicauta pensylvanica. (Photos Marlin E. Rice)

The blister beetles in soybean all belong to the genus Epicauta. While most groups of blister beetles are predators and parasites of bees as larvae, the larvae of this genus attack grasshopper eggs (Pinto 1991). Blister beetles are colored gray or black or are striped in orange and black (such as with the striped blister beetle). They characteristically have a head that is much broader than their thorax with relatively long antennae (Pinto 1991). The eggs and larvae are infrequently encountered because of their hidden life history.