A network that helps people worldwide obtain rapid advice and information on crop protection, including the identification and management of plant pests.
PestNet is a network that helps people worldwide obtain rapid advice and information on crop protection, including the identification and management of plant pests. It started in 1999. Anyone with an interest in plant protection is welcome to join. PestNet is free and is moderated, ensuring that messages are confined to plant protection.
Crops > Trees, palms & pandanus > Palms & cycads > Betel nut, rat or bat, Palau
June 2005. Palau asked if the damage on the betel nut (Areca catechu) fruits was consistent with that caused by rat or fruit bats, or could it be an exotic beetle. This kind of damage has not been seen on betel nut in Palau previously.
From the photos it would be hard to confirm, but both rat and bat damage would leave distinctive teeth (incisor) marks on the freshly damaged fruits similar to damage on cocoa and coconuts.
Similar damages has been seen on native palm fruits, especially Metroxylon vitiense (Sago palm) in Fiji. The damage is caused by either native parrots or fruit bats. Usually the incisions are cleaner.