Suppression of mealybugs and green scale infesting coffee with natural enemies in Karnataka.
Mealybugs, Planococcus citri, P. lilacinus, P. minor and green scale, Coccus viridis, are important sucking pests of coffee in India. Among the natural enemies, Spalgis epius [Spalgis epeus] occurred as a major predator of Planococcus while aphelinids, Coccophagus cowperi and C. bogoriensis resulted in parasitization of C. viridis of up to 87%. The fungal pathogen, Verticillium lecanii, caused more than 90% mortality of C. viridis during monsoon and the colder months of the year when RH was above 76%. The exotic parasitoid, Leptomastix dactylopii, released in 73 mealybug infested coffee estates in Karnataka between 1984-94, was found to have established as a parasitoid of P. citri in 31 estates out of 39 surveyed, causing 3.8 to 100% parasitization in different locations.