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.
Pests > Pests Entities > Mites, Spiders, Scorpions > Mites > Scaring of fruit, Papaya, Cook Is
November 2000. Cook Islands reported an increasing problem with surface scarring on export papayas. According to a survey conducted in October 1990 the scarring was thought to be caused by the false blossom moth, Cryptoblabes gnidiella (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae). Caterpillars of C gnidiella were found feeding on papaya inflorescences. The damage caused on the fruits heals, but the scars expand as the fruit matures and can cover up to 50% of the fruit surface, making the fruit unacceptable for export.
Members had not heard of scarring caused by Cryptoblabes on papaya, and asked for specimens. However, it was pointed out that mite/thrips damage is also a possibility. It is sometimes difficult to to see mites, in particular; it is necessary to look at the very smallest fruits. A good hand lens should detect the mites. Broad mite is a small active glassy-looking mite.
Mites are also hard to collect and may be damaged if picked up. The best way to collect is to wash then off the fruit with 70% alcohol, centrifuge to concentrate and then preserve in 70% alcohol. Be very careful when labelling tubes – the mites can stick to the labels. It is better to put the label (in pencil) on the outside of the tube. 8