Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract Full Text

The aggressive behaviour of the Corythucha ciliata at the environmental changes of the last years.


In the last two years, in the peri-urban and urban areas of the city of Timisoara (Romania) numerous small insects have been observed. These have been identified as species of the Tingidae family, the order Hemiptera, more specifically species of Corythucha ciliata (sycamore lace bugs). In the western part of the country, the species has had a less evolution and without entering the attention, until 2017. In the last two years it gradually experienced an increasing evolution, so that in summer and autumn of 2019, the population level of they became so great that they changed their behaviour. Known as a pest of the plane tree (Platanus sp.), it has developed adaptive abilities to other species and is often observed on birch trees (Betula sp.). During the month of August when the temperature was high the insect became aggressive, so that in the 2 locations where the observations were made (private gardens with houses) behavioural deviations were recorded. In detail, individuals had a chaotic flight and an attraction to human skin (people in the locations under observation were stung manifesting mild allergy symptoms). Also frequent in September and October (during the prewintering period) they were observed on other plants (conifers) in association with the predatory spiders, caught in their canvas. The cause of their presence on conifers is not known, but most likely they have withdrawn to house buildings and in plants with foliage more often in search of heat, in order to wintering. Some of them were seen on terraces and houses. It is obvious that with the changes in temperature in recent years produced changes in the biology and behaviour of this species. As such, it is important to constantly monitor insect populations and to find solutions for their management, especially invasive ones, as well as the target species of this work.