The impact of Pseudotheraptus wayi Brown (Hemiptera: Coreidae) on premature fruit drop and yield of Litchi chinensis in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa
International Journal of Pest Management
Agricultural Research Council - Institute for Tropical and Subtropical Crops, Private Bag X 11208, Nelspruit 1200, South Africa
This is the first record of the coconut bug Pseudotheraptus wayi on litchis in South Africa. Although damage on immature fruit was often in excess of 50%, chemical control of P. wayi did not necessarily increase yields. Litchi trees flower profusely and are probably able to compensate for damage which occurs early in the production season. Because litchis have a strong tendency towards biennial bearing, it was speculated that P. wayi could have a detrimental effect in orchards producing below-average yields. Since P. wayi damaged approximately 50% of the immature fruit in the Nelspruit region, it is safe to assume that litchi is a good alternative host for this insect. Producers of other subtropical fruit should take cognizance of this observation and adapt control programmes for hemipterans in adjoining orchards if necessary. © 2013 Agricultural Research Council, South Africa.
chemical control; crop damage; fruit production; host plant; insect; new record; orchard; yield response; Mpumalanga; South Africa; Coreidae; Hemiptera; Hexapoda; Litchi chinensis; Pentatomidae; Pseudotheraptus wayi