Codling moth, Cydia pomonella (L.) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), is the main pest of pome fruits worldwide. Despite its economic importance, little is known about the genetic structure and patterns of dispersal at the local and regional scale, which are important aspects for establishing a control strategy for this pest. An analysis of genetic variability using microsatellites was performed for 11 codling moth populations in the two major apple (Malus domestica Borkh) cropping regions in central Chile. Despite the geographical distances between some populations (≈185 km), there was low genetic differentiation among populations (FST = 0.002176), with only slight isolation by distance. Only ≈0.2% of the genetic variability was found among the populations. Geographically structured genetic variation was independent of apple orchard management (production or abandoned). These results suggest a high genetic exchange of codling moth between orchards, possibly mediated by human activities related to fruit production.
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Vol. 101 • No. 1