Pest Alert For Duponchelia fovealis

December 16, 2005 - 11:22

A recent report sent from Julieta Brambila, Florida APHIS/USDA, and posted on the University of Florida IFAS Pest Alert Web site, stated that Duponchelia fovealis, a pest of peppers, begonias and other ornamentals, was found in three Canadian locations. According to Brambila, “This species is not established in the United States, but it is being increasingly intercepted at ports of entry.

This alert concerns a Lepidoptera pest in peppers (fruit) from The Netherlands. However, the pest is reported to have a broad host range, including propagative plant materials. Due to the recent increase in interceptions of this pest from The Netherlands, Brambila is asking people to please be alert to its possible presence in plant shipments from that origin.

Personnel in Boston, Mass., continue to find Duponchelia fovealis at an alarming rate on Dutch peppers, according to Brambila. After doing additional research in 2005, three greenhouses in southern Ontario, Canada, were confirmed for having this pest, which was found on begonia plants. The moth has a broad host range and can affect crops such as begonia, gerbera, cyclamen, anthurium, kalanchoe, poinsettia and rose as well as many other crops, including aquatic plants, corn and greenhouse vegetables such as peppers. Duponchelia fovealis is not established in North America and is listed as a pest of quarantine significance.

Recently, Dawn Miller-Cormier, network specialist in horticulture with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency provided this update to Brambila:

"The insect has been present in The Netherlands for about 15 years, and over the past 5-10 it has become established in greenhouses all over that country. The USDA has repeatedly intercepted the insect on imported shipments — primarily in peppers from Europe. The first North American report of the insect was in 2004 when it was identified in a Californian facility producing begonia. This population has been eradicated. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency confirmed the presence of the insect in three Ontario cut flower production facilities in the spring of 2005. It has been eradicated in one facility with eradication efforts continuing in the other two facilities.”

For more information on this pest visit the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s Web site at www.inspection.gc.ca.

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