Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Molecular survey for the invasive leafminer pest Liriomyza huidobrensis (Diptera: Agromyzidae) in California uncovers only the native pest Liriomyza langei.

Abstract

Liriomyza huidobrensis (Blanchard) is a highly destructive invasive leafminer pest currently causing extensive damage to vegetable and horticultural crops around the world. Liriomyza langei Frick is a leafminer pest native to California that cannot currently be morphologically distinguished from L. huidobrensis. We used a DNA-barcoding approach, a published PCR-RFLP method, and a new multiplex PCR method to analyze 664 flies matching the morphological description of huidobrensis-langei. We found no evidence for the presence of L. huidobrensis in our extensive samples from California. In addition to the new molecular method, this work is important because it provides definitive data that the California "pea leafminer" is currently, and has probably always been, L. langei. These data will also be important in the event that the highly invasive L. huidobrensis ever becomes established.