Weevils are a type of beetle belonging to the superfamily Curculionoidea. They are usually small, less than 6 mm (0.24 in), and herbivorous. About 97,000 species of weevils are known. They belong to several families, with most of them in the family Curculionidae (the true weevils). Some other beetles, although not closely related, bear the name "weevil", such as the biscuit weevil (Stegobium paniceum), which belongs to the family Ptinidae.

Many weevils are considered pests because of their ability to damage and kill crops. The grain or wheat weevil (Sitophilus granarius) damages stored grain. The boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis) attacks cotton crops; it lays its eggs inside cotton balls and the larvae eat their way out. Other weevils are used for biological control of invasive plants.

Some weevils have the ability to fly, such as the rice weevil.[1][2]

One species of weevil, Austroplatypus incompertus, exhibits eusociality, one of the few insects outside the Hymenoptera and the Isoptera to do so.

Weevil September 2008-1
Lixus angustatus
Scientific classification

Latreille, 1802


Because so many species exist in such diversity, the higher classification of weevils is in a state of flux. They are generally divided into two major divisions, the Orthoceri or primitive weevils, and the Gonatoceri or true weevils (Curculionidae). E. C. Zimmerman proposed a third division, the Heteromorphi, for several intermediate forms.[3] Primitive weevils are distinguished by having straight antennae, while true weevils have elbowed (geniculate) antennae. The elbow occurs at the end of the scape (first antennal segment) in true weevils, and the scape is usually much longer than the other antennal segments. Some exceptions occur. Nanophyini are primitive weevils (with very long trochanters), but have long scapes and geniculate antennae. From the true weevils, Gonipterinae and Ramphus have short scapes and little or no elbow.

The most recent classification system to family level was provided by Kuschel,[4] with updates from Marvaldi et al.,[5] and was achieved using phylogenetic analyses. The accepted families are the primitive weevils, Anthribidae, Attelabidae, Belidae, Brentidae, Caridae, and Nemonychidae, and the true weevils Curculionidae. Most other weevil families were demoted to subfamilies or tribes. Weevil species radiation was shown to follow steps in plant evolution upon which the weevils feed; they can vary in color from black to light brown.

Some of the features used to distinguish weevil families are:

Labrum visible as separate segment to clypeus Anthribidae, Nemonychidae
Antennae elbowed most Curculionidae, Nanophyini (Apioninae)
Trochanters (segment between coxae and femora) as long or longer than coxae Apioninae including Nanophyini
Fore tibia with comb of setae in apical groove opposite tarsal articulation Belidae
Elytra striate (with longitudinal ridges or grooves) Brentidae, Curculionidae, Rhinorhynchinae
Rostrum short and broad Anthribidae, some Curculionidae (some Brachycerinae including Ithycerus (New York weevil), Scolytinae and Platypodinae).
Maxillary palps long and projecting (visible from above at tip of rostrum) Anthribidae, Nemonychidae
Abdominal tergites 6 and 7 without spiracles Caridae
Gular suture (on ventral part of head) single not double Attelabidae, Brentidae, Curculionidae.

Sexual dimorphism

Rhopalapion longirostre exhibits an extreme case of sexual dimorphism. The female rostrum is twice as long and its surface is smoother than in the male. The female bores egg channels into the buds of Alcea rosea. Thus, the dimorphism is not attributed to sexual selection. It is a response to ecological demands of egg deposition.[6]


A phylogeny of the Curculionoidae based on 18S ribosomal DNA and morphological data is suggested below:[5]









Black Brown Weevil

Aades cultratus

Grosser Traegruessler Liparus glabiostris

Liparus glabiostris

Rose Weevilish

Rhynchites bicolor

Apion (Rhopalapion) longirostre

Apion (Rhopalapion) longirostre


Sitona gressorius

Weevil wynaad

Orychodes indus

Hylobius (Callirus) pinastri 01

Hylobius (Callirus) pinastri


Vanapa oberthuri

Phyllerythrurus sanguinolentus

Phyllerythrurus sanguinolentus


  1. ^ "What Is a Weevil and How Did That Bug Get in My Food?".
  2. ^ "Weevils on Stored Grain (Department of Entomology)". Department of Entomology (Penn State University).
  3. ^ E. C. Zimmerman (1994). Australian weevils (Coleoptera: Curculionidae). Volume 1. Orthoceri: Anthribidae to Attelabidae: the primitive weevils. East Melbourne: CSIRO. pp. 741 pp.
  4. ^ G. Kuschel (1995). "A phylogenetic classification of Curculionoidea to families and subfamilies". Memoirs of the Entomological Society of Washington. 14: 5–33.
  5. ^ a b A. E. Marvaldi, A. S. Sequeira, C. W. O'Brien & B. D. Farrell (2002). "Molecular and morphological phylogenetics of weevils (Coleoptera, Curculionidae): do niche shifts accompany diversification?". Systematic Biology. 51 (5): 761–785. doi:10.1080/10635150290102465. PMID 12396590.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  6. ^ G. Wilhelm; et al. (2011). "Sexual dimorphism in head structures of the weevil Rhopalapion longirostre: a response to ecological demands of egg deposition". Biological Journal of the Linnean Society. 104: 642–660. doi:10.1111/j.1095-8312.2011.01751.x.

Further reading

External links

Aluminium phosphide

Aluminium phosphide (aluminum phosphide) is a highly toxic inorganic compound with the chemical formula AlP used as a wide band gap semiconductor and a fumigant. This colorless solid is generally sold as a grey-green-yellow powder due to the presence of impurities arising from hydrolysis and oxidation.


Anthribidae is a family of beetles also known as fungus weevils. The antennae are not elbowed, may occasionally be longer than the body and thread-like, and can be the longest of any members of Curculionoidea. As in the Nemonychidae, the labrum appears as a separate segment to the clypeus, and the maxillary palps are long and projecting.

Most anthribids feed upon fungi or decaying plant matter, and the larvae feed within dead wood. Some species of Choraginae feed upon seeds, while unusually, Anthribus feeds upon soft scales.


The Attelabidae is a widespread family of weevils. They are among the primitive weevils, because of their straight antennae, which are inserted near the base of the rostrum. The prothorax is much narrower than the base of the elytra on the abdomen. Attelabidae and the related family Rhynchitidae are known commonly as the leaf-rolling weevils. Rhynchitidae may be treated as subfamily Rhychitinae of the Attelabidae.

Some members of this family have long necks and may be called giraffe weevils, particularly Trachelophorus giraffa. A few species are minor agricultural pests. The larvae of Rhynchitinae feed in flower buds, fruits, and terminal shoots, or are leaf miners. The subfamily Attelabinae are the true leaf rollers. The female cuts slits into leaves to deposit her eggs, and rolls that part of the leaf in which the larvae will feed.

Bean weevil

The bean weevils or seed beetles are a subfamily (Bruchinae) of beetles, now placed in the family Chrysomelidae, though they have historically been treated as a separate family. They are granivores, and typically infest various kinds of seeds or beans, living most of their lives inside a single seed. The family includes about 4,350 species and are found worldwide.

Bean weevils are generally compact and oval in shape, with small heads somewhat bent under. Sizes range from 1 to 22 mm for some tropical species. Colors are usually black or brown, often with mottled patterns. Although their mandibles may be elongated, they do not have the long snouts characteristic of true weevils.

Adults deposit eggs on seeds, then the larvae chew their way into the seed. When ready to pupate, the larvae typically cut an exit hole, then return to their feeding chamber. Adult weevils have a habit of feigning death and dropping from a plant when disturbed.

Host plants tend to be legumes, but species will also be found in Convolvulaceae, Arecaceae, and Malvaceae, and several species are considered pests.

One characteristic of the beetles which can be seen in the photo is that the elytra are short, not quite reaching the tip of the abdomen.

Several species are native to Great Britain, but there are also records of several introduced species from stored products in warehouses and dwellings, although these species cannot proliferate outside of heated buildings in that climate.


Belidae is a family of weevils, called belids or primitive weevils because they have straight antennae, unlike the "true weevils" or Curculionidae which have elbowed antennae. They are sometimes known as "cycad weevils", but this properly refers to a few species from the genera Parallocorynus and Rhopalotria.

Boll weevil

The boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis) is a beetle which feeds on cotton buds and flowers. Thought to be native to Central Mexico, it migrated into the United States from Mexico in the late 19th century and had infested all U.S. cotton-growing areas by the 1920s, devastating the industry and the people working in the American South. During the late 20th century, it became a serious pest in South America as well. Since 1978, the Boll Weevil Eradication Program in the U.S. allowed full-scale cultivation to resume in many regions.


Brentidae is a cosmopolitan family of primarily xylophagous beetles also known as straight-snouted weevils. The concept of this family has been recently expanded with the inclusion of three groups formerly placed in the Curculionidae; the subfamilies Apioninae, Cyladinae, and Nanophyinae, as well as the Ithycerinae, previously considered a separate family. They are most diverse in the tropics, but occur throughout the temperate regions of the world. They are among the families of weevils that have non-elbowed antennae, and tend to be elongate and flattened, though there are numerous exceptions.

The subfamilial classification of the family has been reorganized by several different authors within the last 20 years, and is not yet stable; the most recent, and conservative, classification (Oberprieler et al., 2007) accepts only 6 subfamilies, with many familiar subfamilial taxa (e.g., Antliarhininae, Cyladinae, Cyphagoginae, Myrmacicelinae and Trachelizinae) now relegated to the corresponding tribal groups, Antliarhinini, Cyladini, Cyphagogini, Myrmacicelini and Trachelizini, primarily within the subfamily Brentinae.


Caridae is a small Gondwanan family of weevils. They are considered part of the primitive weevil group, because they have straight rather than elbowed antennae. The insertion of the antennae on the rostrum cannot be seen from above. Caridae also lack spiracles on abdominal tergites 6 and 7. The prothorax lacks lateral carinae. It has been suggested that the fossil weevil Eccoptarthrus belongs in this family, which would result in a change in the family name (as "Eccoptarthridae" would have seniority); this proposal has been rejected by most coleopterists (e.g.)

They are usually found on trees from the Cupressaceae. The genus, Car, has been found on Callitris, and Caenominurus on Austrocedrus and Pilgerodendron.


The Curculionidae are the family of the "true" weevils (or "snout beetles"). They are one of the largest animal families, with 6,800 genera and 83,000 species described worldwide.

They include the bark beetles as subfamily Scolytinae, which are modified in shape in accordance with their wood-boring lifestyle. They do not much resemble other weevils, so they were traditionally considered a distinct family, Scolytidae. The family also includes the ambrosia beetles, of which the present-day subfamily Platypodinae was formerly considered the distinct family Platypodidae.


The beetle subfamily Curculioninae is part of the weevil family Curculionidae. It contains over 23,500 described species in 2,200 genera, and is therefore the largest weevil subfamily. Given that the beetle order (Coleoptera) contains about one-quarter of all known organisms, the Curculioninae represent one of the – if not the – most successful radiations of terrestrial Metazoa.Many weevils of this group are commonly known as flower weevils or acorn and nut weevils, after a food commonly eaten by Curculioninae larvae and imagines — the reproductive organs of plants.

Enterprise, Alabama

Enterprise is a city in the southeastern part of Coffee County and the southwestern part of Dale County in the southeastern part of Alabama in the Southern United States. The population was 26,562 at the 2010 census. Enterprise is the primary city of the Enterprise Micropolitan Statistical Area (with the portion of the city located in Dale County part of the Ozark Micropolitan Statistical Area), and is also part of the Dothan-Enterprise-Ozark Combined Statistical Area.

Enterprise is famous for the Boll Weevil Monument, a large monument of a woman holding a boll weevil, which is located in the middle of Main Street. The city erected the statue because the destruction of the cotton crop by the boll weevil had led to agricultural diversity, starting with peanuts and more prosperity than had ever come from cotton alone. It is said to be the only statue to an insect pest in the world. Enterprise is right outside Fort Rucker, an Army base which is the home of Army Aviation.

Enterprise is home to Enterprise State Community College.


The Entiminae are a large subfamily in the weevil family Curculionidae, containing most of the short-nosed weevils, including such genera as Otiorhynchus, Phyllobius, and Sitona. Some of these weevils are notorious pests of major economic importance.

List of Veronica Mars characters

Veronica Mars is an American television series created by Rob Thomas. The series premiered on September 22, 2004, during UPN's last two years, and ended on May 22, 2007, after a season on UPN's successor, The CW Television Network. Balancing murder mystery, high-school and college drama, the series features social commentary with sarcasm and off-beat humor in a style often compared to film noir. Set in the fictional town of Neptune, the series starred Kristen Bell as the title character, a student who progressed from high school to college during the series while moonlighting as a private investigator under the wing of her detective father.

The first season had seven regular characters. As Thomas had conceived the show as a one-year mystery, he decided to introduce and eliminate several characters in order to create an "equally fascinating mystery" for the series' second season. Thomas needed "new blood" since he felt unable to bring back the Kanes and the Echolls and "have them all involved in a new mystery". The third season features a cast of ten actors who receive billing, an increase from the nine actors in the second. Three of the regulars in the second season are written out of the series, two new characters are introduced and two others are upgraded from recurring roles.


Nemonychidae is a small family of weevils, placed within the primitive weevil group because they have straight rather than elbowed antennae. They are often called pine flower weevils. As in the Anthribidae, the labrum appears as a separate segment to the clypeus, and the maxillary palps are long and projecting. Nemonychidae have all ventrites free, while Anthribidae have ventrites 1-4 connate or partially fused. Nemonychidae lack lateral carinae on the pronotum, while these are usually present, though may be short, in Anthribidae.Nemonychidae are divided into three subfamilies: Nemonychinae of the palearctic region with the single genus Nemonyx and an unusual host, the angiosperm Delphinium. Most species of the other two subfamilies are associated with Pinales feeding on the pollen of the male inflorescences. Cimbiderinae are found in the Northern hemisphere, while Rhinorhynchinae occur largely in the Southern hemisphere, especially found on Podocarpaceae and Araucariaceae.

There exists a fairly extensive fossil record of Nemonychidae reaching from the upper Jurassic to tertiary amber.


Rhynchophorus, or common name palm weevil, is a genus of beetles in the weevil family, Curculionidae. Palm weevils are major pests of various trees in the family Arecaceae throughout the tropics including: coconut (Cocos nucifera), Areca catechu, species of the genus Phoenix, Metroxylon sagu.

Rhynchophorus ferrugineus

The palm weevil Rhynchophorus ferrugineus is one of two species of snout beetle known as the red palm weevil, Asian palm weevil or sago palm weevil. The adult beetles are relatively large, ranging between two and four centimeters long, and are usually a rusty red colour—but many colour variants exist and have often been classified as different species (e.g., Rhynchophorus vulneratus). Weevil larvae can excavate holes in the trunk of a palm trees up to a metre long, thereby weakening and eventually killing the host plant. As a result, the weevil is considered a major pest in palm plantations, including the coconut palm, date palm and oil palm.Originally from tropical Asia, the red palm weevil has spread to Africa and Europe, reaching the Mediterranean in the 1980s. It was first recorded in Spain in 1994, and in France in 2006. Additional infestations have been located in Malta, Italy (Tuscany, Sicily, Campania, Sardinia, Lazio, Marche, Puglia and Liguria), Croatia and Montenegro. It is also well established throughout most of Portugal, especially in the South. It also has established in Morocco, Tunisia, and other North African countries. The weevil was first reported in the Americas on Curaçao in January 2009 and sighted the same year in Aruba. It was reported in the United States at Laguna Beach, CA late in 2010 but this was a misidentification of the closely related species, Rhynchophorus vulneratus, and it did not become established.Larvae of Rhynchophorus ferrugineus are considered a delicacy in South East Asia cuisine. In some regions, however, larvae farming is strictly prohibited to prevent the potential devastation of plantation crops..

Rhynchophorus palmarum

The South American palm weevil, Rhynchophorus palmarum, is a species of snout beetle. The adults are relatively large black beetles of approximately one and a half inch in length, and the larvae may grow to two inches in length.

Sphenophorus cicatristriatus

Sphenophorus cicatristriatus, known generally as the Rocky Mountain billbug or Denver billbug, is a species of true weevil in the beetle family Curculionidae. It is found in North America.

Weevil (Torchwood)

Weevils are a fictional extraterrestrial species from the British science fiction television series Torchwood, first appearing in the episode "Everything Changes" (2006). As Jack Harkness explains in that episode, the name "Weevil" is applied to them by Torchwood, but as communication with them is limited, the true name of their race is not known. The behind-the-scenes documentary series, Torchwood Declassified, describes them as the "resident alien of the show". Torchwood Three has a captive Weevil which Owen studies. Jack first considered the name Barbara, but "It didn't seem right" so they named it Janet.

Extant Coleoptera families


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