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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Eradication of a Scarab Pest from a National Wildlife Refugee

Authors
item Klein, Michael
item Mannion, Catharine - TENNESSEE STATE UNIV
item Asquith, Adam - FWS
item Hoffman, Nancy - FWS
item Leal, Walter - UNIV CA DAVIS

Submitted to: Entomology International Congress Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: August 20, 2000
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: The "Emerald Beetle", Protaetia pryeri is a serious pest on the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge. Beetles were probably introduced from China-Japan in early-mid 1900s. Favorable larval habitat under ironwood trees and lack of natural predators allowed populations to explode. Beetles create a quarantine concern about their movement to the main Hawaiian Islands. They also destroy fruits and flowers in island gardens and cause a nuisance by landing on visitors. There is a single generation per year with adults flying from May to October. Larvae concentrate under ironwoods, with few in turf areas and even fewer under beach shrubs. Since ironwoods are not native, they are being killed and cut down. Fewer larvae were found under recently killed trees and few were found past the drip line of living trees. Larvae breaking down the organic matter in ironwood needles have created areas of frass up to 12+ inches deep under some trees. Although previous cetoniid attractants did not capture P. pryeri adults, several were excellent attractants for carpenter bees, the primary pollinator on the island. However, L-Isoleucine Methyl Ester (LIME), attracted over 400 Emerald Beetles to a trap in a day. Tests indicate that ca. 20 mg of LIME will last at least one week and traps near the ground with plastic bags replacing the canisters increase the captures of beetles. Following application in June, the insecticide MACH2 killed 94-100% of P. pryeri larvae by October. The availability of an excellent adult attractant, an effective insecticide and the removal of ironwood trees which create larval habitat, gives us the chance to develop an IPM program for eradication/suppression of this beetle on Midway.

Last Modified: 11/28/2014
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