Mānuka beetle

REDUCED NZ-Ento-Soc-Insect-Playing-Cards_Manuka-beetleCommon name: Mānuka beetle/Mānuka chafer

Scientific name: Pyronota festiva

Māori name: kēkerewai and repowai

Size: 10mm long

Habitat: native scrub and native forest but also pests on pasture


This species feeds on a range of plants during different life stages but is frequently found on or near mānuka, hence its name. Like all beetles, the mānuka beetle spends the first stages of their life as a larvae with small legs ________. Mānuka beetles have a two year life cycle, the first of which is spent as a larvae in the ground. They remain here as larvae for a year where they feed on [the roots of?] pasture plants like rye grasses and clover. Because of this, they are generally considered a pest.

Adults are present in the summer and are most active on sunny days.

The name _______ means stuck in muddy water which supposedly refers to how they are frequently found stuck in the swampy waters near mānuka.


Stewart, KM 1987 NZ entomologist


  • Noted pasture pest along with its close relative Pyronota laeta
  • Adults present in the summer, eggs found in January. Follow a two year life cycle, overwintering as 1st and 2nd instar larvae in their first winter
  • Adults active on sunny days
  • Suggestion that adults need Mānuka



  • Particularly can be a pest to conifers near manuka which he has a strong association with.

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