Occurrence of exotic whitefly, Paraleyrodes minei Iaccarino (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) and other whitefly species on fruit crops in Maharashtra, India.
Severe incidence of an exotic whitefly species Paraleyrodes minei Iaccarino (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) was noticed in the Pune region of Maharashtra state, India, on the fruit trees guava (Psidium guajava L.), jamoon (Syzygium cumini L.), mango (Mangifera indica L.), chiku (Manilkara zapota L.), custard apple (Annona squamosa L.), citrus (Citrus spp.), banana (Musa spp.) and coconut (Cocos nucifera L.). Additional host plants of P. minei are neem (Azadirachta indica L.), Asoka (Saraca asoca) (Roxb.) and temple tree (Plumeria alba L.). The identity of the pest was established based on sequences of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase 1 (mtCO-I) region amplified from genomic DNA of single whitefly. The incidence of P. minei was 100% on guava, jamoon, and custard apple; wherein under the surface of the infested leaves looks completely white with cottony wax. In the case of, coconut, guava, chiku, and banana, P. minei was co-colonising along with the rugose spiralling whitefly (Aleurodicus rugioperculatus Martin). Star gooseberry (Phyllanthus acidus L., new host record) plants were severely infested with less frequently collected whitefly, Bemisia bryniae (Singh). Pomegranate (Punica granatum L.) was infested by whitefly Siphoninus phillyreae (Haliday). The study highlights the need for continuous monitoring of invasive whitefly species population on important fruit crops for timely application of management practices to prevent losses of potential yield.