Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Non-native insects in urban and forest areas of Slovenia and the introduction of Torymus sinensis with Dryocosmus kuriphilus.

Abstract

We survey non-native insects species in whole territory of Slovenia. Data on non-native species were collected in field, and we also used results of projects in which we participated and with overview of literature data in scientific publications. Correspondence Analysis (CA) of data was carried out with the soft-ware Statgraphics Centaurion XVI, U.S.A. Up to 254 non-native insect species are present: around 83% are phytophagous (43% feed on woody plants, 40% on other plants); around 12% are non-phytophagous; and 5% are parasitoids or predators of other insects or mammals. Among the phytophagous species, Hemiptera predominates (with 38.2%), followed by Coleoptera (29.8%) and Lepidoptera (14.5%). Non-native insects that do not feed on plants include Coleoptera (80%), Lepidoptera (6.5%), Hymenoptera (6.5%) and Diptera (6.5%). Most of phytophagous species are associated with introduction of plants on which they are specialists, but some have also shifted from introduced to native plant hosts. 36 non-native phytophagous species (14.17% of all non-native insects) have become harmful plant pests of urban trees and crops. 20 appear on woody plants, but only Dryocosmus kuriphilus, appears in urban forest areas. In the past decades species such as D. kuriphilus, Leptoglossus occidentalis, Xylosandrus germanus, Gnathotrichus materiarius, Dasineura gledichiae, Phyllonorycter issikii, Cinara curvipes, Ophiomyia kwansonis have been recorded in parks and forests. Some non-native species are spreading in Slovenian urban forests and affect economic, ecological and other forest and urban forest functions. The number of harmful insects in forests is extremely small probably due to high diversity of the forest ecosystem, where close-to-nature forest management is practiced, which retains forest's self-regulatory ability to control pests. Such management enables for example the reduction of D. kuriphilus with expansion of its parasitoid, Torymus sinensis. We attempt to explain this phenomenon: we assume that T. sinensis was introduced in Slovenia as diapaused eggs in its host, D. kuriphilus.