Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) is an exotic ladybird, first recorded in South Africa in 2004, where it was introduced factitiously. In this study the seasonal occurrence of H. axiridis and other coccinellids were monitored in four vineyards and the adjacent windbreaks over three growing seasons in the Western Cape Province, South Africa. Harmonia axyridis made up the highest mean number of coccinellids collected per site over the collecting period, followed by Hippodamia variegata, Cheilomenes lunata, Exochomusflavipes and Micraspis sp. No indigenous parasitoids were observed attacking H. axyridis. The numbers of H. axyridis on the vines were negatively correlated with temperature but positively with rainfall. In view of the migration of H. axyridis from the vines in December, they appear not to pose any risk of contaminating grapes during harvest and tainting wine as most wine grapes are harvested from January onwards.
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Vol. 25 • No. 1