Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Review of the invasion of Tetranychus evansi: biology, colonization pathways, potential expansion and prospects for biological control.

Abstract

In the last two decades the subtropical red tomato spider mite, Tetranychus evansi, has expanded its geographical distribution and emerged as a major invasive agricultural pest. The mite is considered to be native to South America. Since its first report from north-eastern Brazil in 1952, it has been reported from different continents. This paper reviews literature on several aspects of the biology of T. evansi related to its status as an invasive species. It addresses taxonomical issues, occurrences, life history traits, host-plant interactions, genetic diversity of geographical isolates and worldwide colonisation pathways. It also presents updated data which allowed the assessment of the actual worldwide distribution of this species, from its discovery to the latest reports. As T. evansi is considered an emerging agricultural pest, we also present data based on modelling of the potential of T. evansi to colonize new geographical areas. In addition, this review presents past and current research on natural enemies of T. evansi potentially useful for its biological control. While summarizing the knowledge on T. evansi, the review emphasizes research possibilities that are worth pursuing, mainly concerning the ability of T. evansi to establish new populations and to detect new promising natural enemies.