Effect of Amblyseius largoensis (Acari: Phytoseiidae) on Raoiella indica (Acari: Tenuipalpidae) by Predator Exclusion and Predator Release Techniques


  • Daniel Carrillo University of Florida, Tropical Research and Education Center, Homestead, FL 33031, USA
  • Marjorie A. Hoy University of Florida, Department of Entomology and Nematology, Gainesville, FL 32611, USA
  • Jorge E. Peña University of Florida, Tropical Research and Education Center, Homestead, FL 33031, USA


mites, Cocos nucifera, invasive species, red palm mite, predator releases, damage, biological control


Raoiella indica Hirst (Acari: Tenuipalpidae), a pest of coconut and other species of palms, recently invaded the Western Hemisphere. Amblyseius largoensis (Muma) (Acari: Phytoseiidae), is a predatory mite found associated with R. indica in different parts of the world. Exclusion and release tactics were used to obtain coconut palms with varying levels of A. largoensis in order to quantify their effects on R. indica densities. Four treatments consisting of 4 rates of release of A. largoensis females (0 = control, 1:10, 1:20 and 1:30 A. largoensis: R. indica) were tested. The releases of A. largoensis resulted in a significant reduction of R. indica densities and less damaged leaf area in the treated coconut palms compared to the controls within 3 months. The largest pest density reduction (~92%) was observed at the highest predator release rate (1:10 A. largoensis: R. indica). The other 2 release rates (1:20 and 1:30 A. largoensis: R. indica) caused significant and equivalent reductions in pest densities (55 and 43%, respectively). Results of this study support the hypothesis that A. largoensis is an important mortality factor of R. indica and should be considered as a key biological control agent in IPM programs targeting R. indica.



Raoiella indica Hirst (Acari: Tenuipalpidae) es una plaga del cocotero y otras especies de palmas que invadió el hemisferio occidental recientemente. Amblyseius largoensis (Muma) (Acari: Phytoseiidae), es un ácaro que se encuentra asociado con R. indica en varias partes del mundo. Se combinaron técnicas de exclusión y liberación para obtener niveles diferentes de A. largoensis en plantas de coco infestadas con R. indica. Se evaluaron cuatro tasas de liberación de A. largoensis (0 = control, 1:10, 1:20 y 1:30 A. largoensis: R. indica). La liberación de A. largoensis produjo una reducción significativa en las densidades de R. indica y del daño foliar ocasionado por este ácaro fitófago. La mayor reducción en densidades de R. indica (~92%) se observó en la tasa de liberación más alta (1:10 A. largoensis: R. indica). Las tasas de liberación de 1:20 y 1:30 (A. largoensis: R. indica) causaron una reducción significativa pero equivalente (55y 43%, respectivamente) en las densidades de R. indica. Los resultados de este estudio indican que A. largoensis es un factor importante que causa mortalidad de R. indica y debe considerarse como agente de control biológico clave en programas de manejo integrado de R. indica.


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