The Colorado potato beetle has never really attained a major celebrity status similar to that of a monarch butterfly or a lady beetle. Still, it was featured on postal stamps, postcards, and wall posters. Some of those were sponsored by the governments to educate their citizens about a new agricultural pest, but others apparently just took advantage of the beetle's good looks and public notoriety (for example, it is not exactly a major threat in Mozambique and Benin). In the early 1950s, the Colorado potato beetle has also become a fairly prominent Cold Warrior, being depicted as an agent of American imperialism sabotaging East German potatoes.
Austrian stamp in this collection is from Skap's Bug Stamps. All other images were kindly donated by Dr. Hielke de Jong. Click on thumbnails below to see bigger images.
Obviously, the first stamp in the collection does not depict the Colorado potato beelte. However, one can easily guess what had inspired the paint job on the locomotive. Also, to put it mildly, host-plant associations depicted on most of the displayed stamps are not very relistic. The Colorado potato beetle has a fairly limited diet of solanaceous plants. However, the artists probably wanted to add some pretty flower to their pictures.
Copyright 2008 Andrei Alyokhin