Potentially important insect pests of Celtis australis in Slovenia, Croatia and Hungary.
We have collected published data and carried out pilot studies on European nettle tree (Celtis australis) entomofauna in Croatia, Slovenia and Hungary. Seven taxa of Lepidoptera (Libythea celtis, Nymphalis polychloros, Archips xylosteana, Erannis defoliaria, Caloptilia fidella, Phyllonoricter millierella and Hyphantria cunea), one cerambycid (Neoclytus acuminatus) and one hemipteran (Metcalfa pruinosa) were found. Two species of Lepidoptera (L. celtis and P. millierella) are monophagous on the leaves of C. australis. The other recorded species are also known on other woody hosts. For N. polychloros, A. xylosteana, E. defoliaria, C. fidella and N. acuminatus European nettle tree is a new host plant. The monophagous species of butterflies on C. australis have appeared more frequently in the last decade. The results are intended to predict whether this tree species is suitable for introduction on a wider scale in pine plantations of Pinus nigra affected by climatic extremes, pests and diseases, such as sphaeropsis blight (Diplodia pinea). Taking into the account the potential rise and growing impact of European nettle defoliators, which, according to some projections will prosper in the future due to global warming, some reservations arise and reduction of C. australis viability are to be expected.