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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: DEVELOPMENT & EVALUATION OF BIOLOGICAL CONTROL AGENTS FOR INVASIVE SPECIES THREATENING THE EVERGLADES & OTHER NATURAL AND MANANGED SYSTEMS Title: Defoliating Broad Nosed Weevil, Plectrophoroides Lutra; Not Suitable for Biological Control of Brazilian Pepper

item Wheeler, Gregory
item Geiger, John
item Mckay, F -
item Rendon, J -
item Chawner, M -
item Pratt, Paul

Submitted to: Biocontrol Science and Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: September 23, 2010
Publication Date: October 22, 2010
Repository URL:
Citation: Wheeler, G.S., Geiger, J.H., Mckay, F., Rendon, J., Chawner, M., Pratt, P.D. 2010. Defoliating broad nosed weevil, Plectrophoroides lutra; not suitable for biological control of Brazilian Pepper. Biocontrol Science and Technology. 21(1):89-91.

Interpretive Summary: The safety of a Brazilian weevil Plectrophoroides lutra was evaluated for biological control of the invasive weed Brazilian pepper. The weevil was found in Brazil in high density only feeding on the weed in its natural habitat. These weevils were collected and tested under quarantine conditions. The weevil adults were offered valued plants that would be vulnerable to attack should this species be released. However our results show that this weevil fed well on all species offered. Therefore, the quarantine colony was destroyed; however we continue searching and testing additional species.

Technical Abstract: The adults of the weevil Plectrophoroides lutra were evaluated for potential as an agent for biological control of Schinus terebinthifolius. Our Brazilian field observations indicated that the adults were only collected from S. terebinthifolius, however when tested on North American and other valued plant species the adults fed broadly on all species offered. Thus, it is unlikely this species will be developed as a biological control agent for S. terebinthifolius.

Last Modified: 4/20/2015
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