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General Information

Common name: Wireworm
Scientific name: Agriotes spp., Conoderus spp., Limonius spp., Melanotus cribulosus

Host plants

Cotton, tobacco, tomato, corn, sorghum, peanuts, potatoes, carrot, melons, beet, and strawberry fruits that touch the soil surface


Wireworm is much more prevalent in areas where cotton, tobacco, and corn are the main crops.


Wireworms destroy germinating seeds and tiny seedlings by cutting off underground roots resulting in missing stands. They attack the stems of newly set plant by boring into the stems near the soil surface. Some plants may wilt and die within a few days or may have stunted growth. Often, the wireworm is found near the damaged or missing seed or plant. Damage is most likely to occur where host plants like cotton, corn, sorghum, and tobacco have been previously planted (CABI, 2000).


Wireworms are the larvae of different species of Click beetles. Larvae are slender and hard and feel somewhat like wires. Their bodies are segmented and shiny and are usually cylindrical, but flat on the lower sides. There are three pairs of legs close together near the head and no prolegs. Some of the most common species are white, yellowish-brown to reddish-brown, although other species may vary in color (CABI, 2000).
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