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1 August 2009 Present Status of Maconellicoccus hirsutus(Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) in the Mariana Islands and Its Control by Two Fortuitously Introduced Natural Enemies
G.V.P. Reddy, R. Muniappan, Z. T. Cruz, F. Naz, J. P. Bamba, J. Tenorio
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Abstract

The mealybug Maconellicoccus hirsutus (Green) (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae), attacks ornamental and fruit crops in the Mariana Islands. Insecticides cannot penetrate the heavy layers of wax that protect the insect's body. We surveyed the mealybug's locally recruited natural enemies and their effects on its population on Guam, Rota, Saipan, and Tinian to assess the need for introduction of exotic natural enemies. We monitored population densities of M. hirsutus, those of its natural enemies, and parasitism rates for 3 yr, 2005–2007. Our surveys revealed the presence of two parasitoids, Anagyrus kamali Moursi (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae) and Allotropa sp. near mecrida (Walker) (Hymenoptera: Platygastridae), fortuitously introduced to the Mariana Islands with M. hirsutus. The predator Cryptolaemus montrouzieri Mulsant (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) also was often found feeding on M. hirsutus. Population density of M. hirsutus was below the economic threshold at all locations. Rainfall seemed to affect mean numbers of M. hirsutus and mean numbers of eggs at some locations. On all four islands, the two parasitoids, complemented by the predator, were effectively controlling the M. hirsutus population. No evidence of hyperparasitism was recorded. Currently, economic damage by M. hirsutus is not a concern in the Mariana Islands, and additional parasitoids need not be introduced to control M. hirsutus.

© 2009 Entomological Society of America
G.V.P. Reddy, R. Muniappan, Z. T. Cruz, F. Naz, J. P. Bamba, and J. Tenorio "Present Status of Maconellicoccus hirsutus(Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) in the Mariana Islands and Its Control by Two Fortuitously Introduced Natural Enemies," Journal of Economic Entomology 102(4), 1431-1439, (1 August 2009). https://doi.org/10.1603/029.102.0405
Received: 23 October 2008; Accepted: 1 April 2009; Published: 1 August 2009
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