Submitted to: Journal of Economic Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/23/2014
Publication Date: 9/14/2014
Citation: Scheffer, S.J., Lewis, M.L. 2014. Molecular survey for the invasive leafminer pest Liriomyza Huidobrensis in California (Diptera: Agromyzidae) uncovers only the native pest L. langei. Journal of Economic Entomology. 107(5):1959-1964.
Interpretive Summary: Leafmining flies are important invasive pests of vegetables, ornamentals, and cut flower crops around the world, causing millions of dollars in losses. The pea leafminer from South America is a highly damaging invasive leafmining pest that in recent decades has spread to Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. This study used molecular methods to investigate whether the invasive pea leafminer is established in California. Analysis of molecular data from 665 specimens from six counties found no evidence of the invasive pea leafminer and detected only native species. This information will be of interest to quarantine officials, growers, pest managers, and scientists.
Technical Abstract: Liriomyza huidobrensis is a highly destructive invasive leafminer pest currently causing extensive damage to vegetable and horticultural crops around the world. Liriomyza langei is a leafminer pest native to California that cannot currently be morphologically distinguished from L. huidobrensis. This study uses molecular data to address the question of whether L. huidobrensis is present in California, but undetected due to its morphological similarity to L. langei. We used both a published PCR-RFLP method and a new muliplex-PCR method to analyze 665 flies matching the morphological description of L. huidobrensis-langei. We found no evidence for the presence of L. huidobrensis in California.