Christmas Beetles maybe?

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Christmas Beetles maybe?

Postby justjoyful » Thu Nov 21, 2013 3:24 pm

I have what I think are Christmas Beetles swarming all over the top of my pear tree. Can anyone confirm that they are actually Christmas Beetles? I've looked up on the internet about the beetles, and Christmas beetles apparently like eucalyptus leaves, and the fact that these ones are on the pear tree makes me wonder if they are something else.

And will they do any serious damage to the tree? My preference is to just let the beetles be if they aren't doing any damage, but if they are threatening the tree, I want to stop it.

Thanks,
Christmas Beetle.JPG
is this a Christmas beetle?
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Re: Christmas Beetles maybe?

Postby greg.l » Thu Nov 21, 2013 7:32 pm

That is a christmas beetle but I don't know what you can do about them. At my place they just eat eucalypts. Don't try to handle them, they can cause a bad infection if they get in your eye. They move around a lot so they shouldn't be in your tree very long.
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Re: Christmas Beetles maybe?

Postby bubba louie » Thu Nov 21, 2013 9:29 pm

greg.l wrote:That is a christmas beetle but I don't know what you can do about them. At my place they just eat eucalypts. Don't try to handle them, they can cause a bad infection if they get in your eye. They move around a lot so they shouldn't be in your tree very long.



I've caught and played with them all though my childhood and I've never heard of them causing infections. Are you sure you're not confusing them with something else?


I googled and all I could find was a condition called Christmas Eye, but they think it is caused by a microscopic beetle.
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Re: Christmas Beetles maybe?

Postby tam » Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:31 pm

I played with them as a kid and never came to any harm either.
The ones we called Christmas beetles were a gold colour with dark specks on them.
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Re: Christmas Beetles maybe?

Postby JNarelle » Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:33 pm

i've noticed a few Christmas beetles about this year already, more than the last 10 years, hopefully they are making a comeback.
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Re: Christmas Beetles maybe?

Postby justjoyful » Sat Nov 23, 2013 7:48 am

I remember then a lot from when I was a kid at Parkes (NSW, not Canberra), but not so much when I was living in Sydney. I figured it was just a matter of where I was living that meant I didn't see them any more. Now I'm at Bathurst, I thought maybe it was a country NSW thing.

Anyway, they seem to have reduced in number dramatically over the last couple of days. Now there are only a few at the top of one of our trees. I have noticed the mynah birds eating them, so they have either moved on, or been eaten. Regardless, I'm happy it has worked out naturally, without any intervention from me.
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Re: Christmas Beetles maybe?

Postby greg.l » Sun Nov 24, 2013 6:56 pm

bubba louie wrote:
greg.l wrote:That is a christmas beetle but I don't know what you can do about them. At my place they just eat eucalypts. Don't try to handle them, they can cause a bad infection if they get in your eye. They move around a lot so they shouldn't be in your tree very long.



I've caught and played with them all though my childhood and I've never heard of them causing infections. Are you sure you're not confusing them with something else?


I googled and all I could find was a condition called Christmas Eye, but they think it is caused by a microscopic beetle.


Well I may be guilty of overstating the risk, but my wife is a medico and it is a genuine problem, though probably rare. If a christmas beetle flies into your eye and scratches the cornea it can cause a nasty infection, this is a specific infection caused by chrissy beetles. The simple thing is to blink and not let beetles fly into your eye, but they can zoom round quite fast and get in your eye.
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