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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Miami, Florida » Subtropical Horticulture Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #397683

Research Project: Mitigation of Invasive Pest Threats to U.S. Subtropical Agriculture

Location: Subtropical Horticulture Research

Title: The lychee erinose mite(Aceria litchii): pest status and management in Florida

item REVYNTHI, ALEXANDRA - University Of Florida
item SILVA ATAIDE, LIVIA - University Of Florida
item CANON, MARIA - University Of Florida
item DELLA VECHIA, JAQUELINE - University Of Florida
item ANDRADE, DANIEL - Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP)
item Kendra, Paul
item Tabanca, Nurhayat
item Hammond, John
item Ochoa, Ronald - Ron
item CARRILLO, DANIEL - University Of Florida

Submitted to: Acarology International Congress Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/31/2022
Publication Date: 12/1/2022
Citation: Revynthi, A. M., Ataide, L. M. S., Canon, M.-A., Della Vechia, J. F., Andrade, D. J., Kendra, P. E., Tabanca, N., Hammond, J., Ochoa, R., and Carrillo, D. 2022. The lychee erinose mite (Aceria litchii): pest status and management in Florida. In Zhang, Z.-Q., Fan, Q.-H., Heath, A.C.G., and Minor, M.A. (Eds.). Acarological Frontiers: Proceedings of the XVI International Congress of Acarology (1-5 Dec 2022, Auckland, New Zealand). Magnolia Press, Auckland, 328 pp.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: The lychee erinose mite (LEM) (Aceria litchii) is an important pest of lychee. This minute mite prefers to feed on young new flush, causing the formation of hypertrophic trichomes, known as erinea. In Brazil, LEM has been reported to cause 80% yield reduction and its interception in Lee County, Florida, in 2018, triggered a quarantine and subsequent eradication program. However, eradication efforts did not stop LEM from spreading to all lychee-growing areas in Florida. Therefore, an integrated pest management program is urgently needed to mitigate the damage caused by this mite in recently invaded areas. We correlated erinea development with the mite population levels and developed a method to evaluate acaricidal efficacy. Using this method, we tested ten acaricides for efficacy as prophylactic and/or curative treatments to protect the new flush. Fenpyroximate, Pyridaben, Tolfenpyrad and Sulfur showed potential as preventative prophylactic treatments but were ineffective in controlling existing infestations. We also developed a postharvest treatment consisting of paraffinic oil dips for one minute under constant agitation. This treatment can disinfest fruit from LEM, allowing growers to ship and sell their fruit outside the quarantined areas. Little information is available regarding the ecology of this pest and how it locates the new flush while being hidden inside the erinea. Chemical analysis of infested and non-infested lychee plants identified 27 volatile compounds from five chemical groups, including aldehydes, alkanes, terpenes, phenols, and ketones. The most abundant compounds were nonanal, decanal, limonene, sabinene, ß-caryophyllene and ar-curcumene. These compounds were evaluated in two-choice bioassays for LEM attraction at 3, 5, 7, 10, 25, 50, 75 and 100% concentrations. Results showed that concentration influenced LEM attraction or repellence to individual compounds, often showing attraction in low concentrations. Results of this study can serve as the basis for developing a lure for control of this pest in the field. Current research focuses on the chemical ecology of LEM and developing integrated pest management programs for this important pest.