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.
March 2004. Caterpillars of Euproctis fraterna (Lepidoptera: family Lymantriidae) pose a problem to human health as well as the environment in the Maldives. The large ‘clusters’ of the caterpillars defoliate entire trees; and when shedding hairs they cause serious skin irritations and breathing problems. As they ‘invade’ houses, the problem becomes even more serious, and this has forced people to leave their houses. Pest populations appear to fluctuate considerably, with outbreaks occurring quite often. In those periods numbers of larvae become excessively high, and whole trees become defoliated.
Some parasitoids are present: an egg parasitoid (Telenomus (Aholcus) sp.); and a parasitic fly that emerges from the pupa (yet to be identified). Literature searches have provided some information, but suggestions about other biocontrol agents, or alternative control measures are requested. Also, where is this pest is considered endemic?
According to Seitz, Euproctis fraterna Moore occurs in India, Ceylon and Burma. There is also an illustration of the species in Seitz.
It was suggested to test the efficacy of Bacillus thuringiensis kurstaki, used here successfully in New Zealand, for instance, with a sterile male release in the presumed eradication of painted apple moth.