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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Gainesville, Florida » Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology » Insect Behavior and Biocontrol Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #294051

Title: Seven invasive owlet moths (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in Israel and their potential parasitoids (Hymenoptera: Chalcidoidea)

item KRAVCHENKO, V - Tel Aviv University
item MULLER, G - Hebrew University
item Allan, Sandra - Sandy
item YEFREMOVA, Z - Tel Aviv University

Submitted to: Phytoparasitica
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/16/2013
Publication Date: 7/1/2014
Citation: Kravchenko, V.D., Muller, G.C., Allan, S.A., Yefremova, Z. 2014. Seven invasive owlet moths (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in Israel and their potential parasitoids (Hymenoptera: Chalcidoidea). Phytoparasitica. 42(3):333-339.

Interpretive Summary: Noctuid moths can have devastating effects on vegetable and grain crops through the destructive feeding of caterpillars. In review of potentially expanding geographic ranges of tropical noctuid pest species, detailed knowledge of the historic and current ranges of potential pest species is necessary as a background to target surveillance efforts for potential invasive pests. Such efforts can help focus control and eradication efforts once the pests are detected.In this study scientists at the USDA Agriculture Research Service, Center for Medical, Veterinary and Agricultural Entomology in Gainesville, Florida, extensive trapping was conducted across Israel to detect presence of new pest species of noctuid moths and potential species of parasitoid wasps as biological control agents. Seven tropical pest species of noctuids were detected in very low numbers and only along the coastal plain. Several parasitoid species with potential as biological control agents were also detected. This study serves as the background for continued surveillance for invasive noctuid species. Additionally, indigenous parasitoid wasp species have been identified with potential to control the invasive noctuid pests.

Technical Abstract: Over a 10 year period, collections from light traps placed at 88 locations throughout Israel were examined for tropical species of noctuid pest species and associated parasitoids. Tropical noctuidae pest species collected included Spodoptera mauritia (Boisduval), Trichoplusia vittata (Wallengren), Anomis flava (Fabricius), Anomis sabulifera (Guenée), Earias vittella (Fabricius), Earias biplaga Walker, and Earias cupreoviridis (Walker). All seven noctuid species were rare and sporadically present only along the coastal plain. Abundance was greatest in May with smaller peaks present in February-March and September. Several parasitoid species with potential as biological control agents for tropical noctuids were detected in Israel. In the event of emergence of any of the seven noctuid species as agricultural pests, additional trapping studies on the coastal plain are necessary as a foundation for development of biological control-based management strategies.