Hadramphus tuberculatus (Pascoe, 1877)

NZ-Ento-Soc-Insect-Playing-Cards_Knobbled-Weevil.jpg REDCommon name: Cantebury knobbled weevil

Order: Coleoptera       Family: Curculionidae

Size:14-15mm

The Cantebury knobbled weevil is a highly endangered species which was thought extinct in 1924. But miraculously, a single population (fewer than a hundred weevils) was found in 2004 living on golden speargrass (Aciphylla aurea) in Burkes Pass Scenic Reserve, Canterbury. This patch is almost a few hectares in size which makes this population extremely vulnerable to being wiped out by fire or human activities. It’s not surprising then that this weevil also made the top 10 most endangered species in New Zealand in 2015. But there is some hope for the weevil: although its host plant is slow growing and difficult to grow from seed, scientists recently succeeded in rearing the beetles under laboratory conditions and even managed to produce larvae.


Resources:

Endangered species foundation. Ten most endangered species. Retrieved from http://www.endangeredspecies.org.nz/projects/10-most-endangered/

Fountain ED, Pugh AR, Wiseman BH, Smith VR, Cruickshank RH, Paterson AM. (2015). Captive rearing of the endangered weevil Hadramphus tuberculatus (Pascoe, 1877) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Molytinae) for ex-situ conservation. New Zealand Entomologist, 39 (1), 23-32.