Egg - The newly laid egg is spherical, white and about 0.5 mm in diameter.
Larva - The newly hatched larva is white and approximately 1.5 mm long. The mature larva reaches a length of 14 to 19 mm. Its last abdominal segment terminates in a V-shaped notch.
Pupa - The brown pupa is slightly larger than the adult; it occurs in the soil near the food source.
Host Plants - The tobacco wireworm apparently prefers tobacco, but it feeds on a variety of other plants including corn, potatoes, and various truck crops.
Damage - The tobacco wireworm is one of several species of wireworms which reduce field corn stands in North Carolina. Problems with this insect result primarily from continual planting of corn in the same field. Larval feeding on newly planted corn seeds causes poor germination and stunted, spindly, chlorotic plants which often die or are nonproductive. The typical above ground symptom is a distinct yellow streaking of the terminal blades. Wireworm damage consists of one or more ragged holes on the underground stem and extensive root pruning in older seedlings.
Life History - The eggs (240 per female) are laid singly on, or slightly beneath, the soil surface in the summer. Larvae hatch and feed on the roots of corn or other plants. The winter is passed in the larval stage. When corn is planted the following spring, these wireworms feed on the germinating seeds and young seedlings. Pupation then occurs in the soil, and adults emerge during early summer. There is only one generation per year. The average life cycle requires about 348 days in North Carolina, as follows: egg, 10 days; larva, 315 days; pupa, 10 days; and preoviposition period, 13 days.