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Epitrix fasciata (Blatchey) - E. cucumeris (Harris) - E. hirtipennis (Melsheimer) - Psylliodes brettinghami (Baley)

Solanaceae flea beetles



  • Widespread insects from South America to North America and in the Caribbean for E. fasciata and E. hirtipennis; in Polynesia for E. hirtipennis; and in India, Australia and Oceania for P. brettinghami . Des espèces d ' Epitrix ont également été signalées in marine lobster in Mayotte and Reunion.
  • Belong to the order of Coleoptera and to the family of Chrysomelidae: subfamily of Alticianae.
  • Mainly found on tomato and eggplant.
  • Observed in the open field as well as under shelters.

Sensitive botanical family (s)



Affected production areas :

Mayotte Reunion island
New Caledonia* French Polynesia

* New Caledonia: P. brettinghami only


Organs attacked

Leaves Flowers


 Symptoms, damage 

  • Symptoms :
    • Leaves with small, regular (a few millimeters) and rather rounded blade perforations; they are linked to the parasitism of adult insects which regularly graze and devour the upper and lower surfaces of the leaf blade (figures 1 to 3, 6).
    • Leaves more or less sifted, sometimes taking the appearance of lace and can dry out (figures 4 and 5) .
    • Grazed flower petals (figure 7).
    • Sometimes significant damage, especially on young tender and succulent plant tissues. The larvae do not appear to be parasitic on the roots.
  • Signs : Presence of adult insects on the leaves and sometimes the flowers of plants (Figures 3, 6 to 9).
  • Possible confusion : In the past, the different species of flea beetles of the genus Epitrix have been confused with those of the genus Leptophysa .



  • Development cycle :
    • Eggs laid on the ground at the foot of plants, isolated or in small groups.
    • Whitish larvae developing in the soil at root level: three successive larval stages.
    • Adults of E. fasciata can be identified by their brown coloration and those of E. cucumeris by their black coloration; shiny and metallic in appearance, they are approximately 2 mm in length. They are often present in numbers on the leaves and have the particularity of being lively and jumping if they feel in danger.



  • Weed the crop and its surroundings.
  • Produce the seedlings in an nursery insect-proof .
  • Check the sanitary quality of the plants before and during their introduction into the crop or shelter.
  • Install  canvases  insect-proof in the nursery, on the rows in the open field when planting, and at the openings of shelters when weather conditions allow.
  • Mulch the culture to limit the emergence of adults.
  • Reason the  chemical protection that is possible for this use. Remember to respect the conditions of use of phytosanitary products.
  • Treat plants before uprooting in the presence of high pest populations.
Last change : 11/16/21
Figure 1
Figure 2
Epitrix_adultes 2
Figure 3
Figure 4
Epitrix_dégâts 1
Figure 5
Figure 6
Figure 7
Figure 8
Figure 9