Cats Claw Creeper Biocontrol

Jewel beetle breeding

Cats Claw Creeper is an aggressive, climbing vine that threatens many natural areas in the Gold Coast region.

There are a number of control options available, one of them being the leaf mining jewel beetle (Hylaeogena jureceki). The beetles spend their entire lives on the Cats claw plants. The adults munch away at the leaves before laying their eggs on a fresh leaf. Once the larvae hatch they mine within the leave until it drops off the plant. The beetles are inactive in the winter months but they come to life in summer and get busy! Their breeding cycles are extremely fast (30-45 days) and we hope to achieve several this breeding season.

Beetles bred to date – 2000

Our Breeding facility

Beetle Blog

14th October 2020

Breeding tents populated!

Today we released 1000 beetles into our 4 breeding tents and they are already busy munching away at the cats claw, damaging the plants and getting nice and healthy so they are ready to breed!

We expect these 1000 beetles to multiply into 10,000 beetles within 5-6 weeks!

20th October 2020

New larvae already!

Our beetles have been busy! Jewel beetle larvae is what does most damage to the cats claw. The larva mine the leave eating all the goodness before encasing themselves in a circular cavity where they will morph into a beetle within a week or two.

The damaged leaves simply drop off the plant, leaving it bare and vulnerable to full removal by regen workers.