Serious infestations of Xylosandrus germanus (Blandford, 1894) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Scolytinae) in chestnut plantations of North-Western Italy.
In the Spring 2018 large infestations of the Asian ambrosia beetle Xylosandrus germanus were observed in various chestnut plantations in province of Cuneo (NW Italy). Unexpected thermal increase recorded in April triggered massive colonization of young Euro-Japanese hybrids chestnuts planted in 2017. The attacks spread in a wide western territory of the Cuneo province (Valle Infernotto, Valle Varaita, Saluzzo plain, Valle Po), causing the death of about 25% of the trees growing in the plantations affected by the infestations. Prompt clearcut and destruction of the infested trees, and the laying of attractive traps is needed to contain the damage and reduce the pest population density. Continuous monitoring of the physiological conditions of young chestnut trees and of the pest population is required in order to prevent new outbreaks.