Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Occurrence of cassava mealybug, Phenacoccus manihoti matile-ferrero (Pseudococcidae: Hemiptera), a new invasive pest on cassava in India and prospects for its classical biological control.

Abstract

Increased globalization and trade have made India a target for entry of many new alien insect pests. One such unintentional recent introduction is the cassava mealybug (CMB), Phenacoccus manihoti on cassava. Monitoring on the occurrence and damage potential of CMB on cassava was undertaken during 2020. Among the places surveyed, maximum damage score (4-5) and density of the mealybug (>1000/shoot tip) were recorded in Salem and Namakkal districts of Tamil Nadu and Thrissur district of Kerala. In the absence of effective native natural enemies and other methods of control, CMB might pose a major crisis to the cassava industry in India. The prospects of its suppression by classical biological control are quite vibrant and the initiative to import the parasitoid wasp, Anagyrus lopezi from Thailand and the Republic of Benin is already being taken by ICAR-NBAIR, Bengaluru, India.