Epichoristodes acerbella Walk. (Lepidoptera - Tortricidae)

Nuzzaci, G.

Entomologica 9: 147-178


ISSN/ISBN: 0425-1016
Accession: 000367429

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Detailed descriptions are given of the adults, the newly hatched and mature larva and the pupa of Epichoristodes acerbella (Wlk.), a pest of carnation and other ornamental plants, fruit trees, vegetables and fodder crops, which was recently introduced into Italy, followed by information on its life-history and natural enemies. Near Bari in Italy it appeared to have four generations a year in the open and 5-6 in the greenhouse, but these were difficult to distinguish since all stages were present for most of the year. Eggs were laid on the leaves of carnation at all heights on the plant, and the larvae fed first on the leaves and later attacked the flower buds and mined the stems. The parasites observed comprised the Ichneumonid Itoplectis sp., which emerged from 8% of the Epichoristodes pupae in July; the Braconids Bracon (Habrobracon) hebetor Say, B. (H.) nigricans (Szepl.) and Apanteles xanthostigmus (Hal.), of which the first attacked 7% of the larvae but the last two were rare; and the Tachinid Nemorilla maculosa (Mg.), which was recovered from up to 20% of the host pupae in June-July. Control afforded by these parasites was insufficient. Owing to the difficulty of reaching the larvae within the stems, organophosphates that control this and other pests should be applied at hatching. Infested shoots can be removed during picking and thinning, and fields after harvest should be properly cleared of plant debris, which is a source of reinfestation for greenhouses.