Classification: | Kingdom: Animalia | Phylum: Arthropoda | Class: Insecta | Order: Coleoptera | Family: Chrysomelidae | Genus: Lema |
The beetle was first seen in November 2011 at a park feeding on the leaves of the Cheilocostus speciosus (Crepe Ginger). It has 4 tiny dark spots on their hard wing cases (elytra), two on each elytron. This corresponds to the description by Martin Jacoby in his book on Chrysomelidae back in 1908 . Based on the picture found in page 359 of the book, Singapore Biodiversity, this beetle was identified as Lema quadripunctata.
Several sightings confirm that Cheilocostus speciosus is indeed its host plant as the beetle was consistently found on this plant. While feeding on the leaves, the beetle makes a lot of small holes on the leaves (see below picture), which indicate of its presence. However, there are usually just one or a few beetles around the vicinity. So far, I have not seen a site with more than 5 beetles.
1. Jacoby M, 1908. The Fauna of British India V1: Coleoptera, Chrysomelidae. pp. 55.