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Datasheet

Chrysodeixis chalcites
(golden twin-spot moth)

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Datasheet

Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 10 December 2020
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Pest
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Chrysodeixis chalcites
  • Preferred Common Name
  • golden twin-spot moth
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Arthropoda
  •       Subphylum: Uniramia
  •         Class: Insecta
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Although C. chalcites has been recorded in northern Europe, winter mortality prevents its long-term establishment out of doors. However, it has been able to extend its natural distribution into northern Europe by establishing in glasshouses. This can...

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); adult, alert. Indonesia.
TitleAdult
CaptionChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); adult, alert. Indonesia.
Copyright©Merle Shepard, Gerald R.Carner & P.A.C Ooi/Insects and their Natural Enemies Associated with Vegetables and Soybean in Southeast Asia/Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); adult, alert. Indonesia.
AdultChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); adult, alert. Indonesia.©Merle Shepard, Gerald R.Carner & P.A.C Ooi/Insects and their Natural Enemies Associated with Vegetables and Soybean in Southeast Asia/Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in extended posture. USA.
TitleLarva
CaptionChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in extended posture. USA.
Copyright©Steve Hatch/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in extended posture. USA.
LarvaChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in extended posture. USA.©Steve Hatch/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in 'looping' posture. USA.
TitleLarva
CaptionChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in 'looping' posture. USA.
Copyright©Steve Hatch/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in 'looping' posture. USA.
LarvaChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva, in 'looping' posture. USA.©Steve Hatch/Bugwood.org - CC BY-NC 3.0 US
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); pupa on soyabean.
TitlePupa
CaptionChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); pupa on soyabean.
Copyright©Ernst Neering
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); pupa on soyabean.
PupaChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); pupa on soyabean.©Ernst Neering
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva. Note presence of Braconid wasp (Glyptapanteles phytometrae) cocoon, a natural enemy.
TitleLarva
CaptionChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva. Note presence of Braconid wasp (Glyptapanteles phytometrae) cocoon, a natural enemy.
Copyright©Merle Shepard, Gerald R.Carner & P.A.C Ooi/Insects and their Natural Enemies Associated with Vegetables and Soybean in Southeast Asia/Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US
Chrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva. Note presence of Braconid wasp (Glyptapanteles phytometrae) cocoon, a natural enemy.
LarvaChrysodeixis chalcites (golden twin-spot moth, tomato looper); mature larva. Note presence of Braconid wasp (Glyptapanteles phytometrae) cocoon, a natural enemy.©Merle Shepard, Gerald R.Carner & P.A.C Ooi/Insects and their Natural Enemies Associated with Vegetables and Soybean in Southeast Asia/Bugwood.org - CC BY 3.0 US

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Chrysodeixis chalcites (Esper)

Preferred Common Name

  • golden twin-spot moth

Other Scientific Names

  • Autographa chalcites Esper
  • Autographa chalcites Linnaeus
  • Chrysodeixis chalcytes (Doubleday)
  • Chrysodeixis chalcytes (Esper)
  • Noctua chalcites Esper
  • Noctua chalcytes Esper
  • Noctua chalsytis Hubner
  • Noctua questionis Fabricius
  • Phalaena chalcites Esper
  • Phytometra chalcites Esper
  • Plusia buchholzi Plotz
  • Plusia chalcites (Esper)
  • Plusia chalcytes Saalmuller
  • Plusia cohaerens Schultz

International Common Names

  • English: garden, looper, green; golden twin spot; green garden looper; green looper; green semi-looper; groundnut semi-looper; tomato leafworm; tomato looper
  • French: noctuelle de l'artichaut

Local Common Names

  • Norway: gullmetallfly

EPPO code

  • PLUSCH (Chrysodeixis chalcites)

Summary of Invasiveness

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Although C. chalcites has been recorded in northern Europe, winter mortality prevents its long-term establishment out of doors. However, it has been able to extend its natural distribution into northern Europe by establishing in glasshouses. This can be considered as a type of invasiveness.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Arthropoda
  •             Subphylum: Uniramia
  •                 Class: Insecta
  •                     Order: Lepidoptera
  •                         Family: Noctuidae
  •                             Genus: Chrysodeixis
  •                                 Species: Chrysodeixis chalcites

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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Chrysodeixis chalcites has been known by many names since Esper first described it in 1789 as Phalaena chalcites. The substitution of an 'i' for the 'y' in the spelling of the species name has increased the number of ways the name appears in the literature. The present genus name has also been spelt in different ways, including Chryodeicis, Chrysodixis and Chrysodeixia (Nye, 1975). The accepted spelling of the genus and species name is Chrysodeixis chalcites. The confusion between Chrysodeixis chalcites and C. eriosoma is unresolved although Kostrowicki (1961) described C. chalcites as a species in its own right and separated it from C. eriosoma Doubleday on the basis of differences in wing facies, forewing coloration and morphological differences in cornuti of male genitalia. Benn et al. (1982) suggested that C. chalcites and C. eriosoma may be vicariant species. Holloway (1985) disagreed and thought that although there were only slight differences in the characters separating the two species, they were indeed distinct species. Later Holloway et al. (1987) suggested that the relationship between the two species required clarification.

Description

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Ovum/Egg

White to pale green and shiny. Dome-shaped with 28 to 32 vertical ribs from the micropyle to the base (Bretherton, 1983; Goodey, 1991).

Larva

Mature larvae are 34 to 38 mm long, pale yellow-green with a glassy green to grey head edged with a black streak. Above the spiracles on each side of the body is a thin dark green or black line stretching from the head to the seventh abdominal segment, below this is a thicker white line from the head to the tip of the anal proleg. Spiracles are black. The ventral region is speckled with white dots (Haggett, 1980; Bretherton, 1983; Passoa, 1995; Porter, 1997). Larvae have only three pairs of prolegs, instead of the normal five, resulting in the looping gait giving rise to some of the common names.

Haggett (1980) provides a detailed description and colour illustration of the final larval instar.

Pupa

The pupa is 20 mm long, black in a white cocoon which turns brown then black (Harakly and Farag, 1975; Bretherton, 1983; Sannino et al. 1988).

Adult

The adult wingspan is approximately 40 mm. The forewing is 15-17 mm, usually gold, although some individuals have more of a bronze colour. There are two oval silver spots on the forewing although in some individuals these are united. The hindwing is more pale. There are two prominent crests on the thorax (Pinhey, 1979; Bretherton, 1983; Passoa, 1995).

Distribution

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C. chalcites is primarily distributed between 45°N and 35°S, from southern Europe and the Mediterranean and the Middle East to southern Africa. Literature referring to C. chalcites (= chalcytes) in southern or eastern Asia or Oceania actually refers to C. eriosoma (Zhang, 1994).

C. chalcites immigrants from North Africa or southern Europe, borne on strong southerly winds, are sometimes recorded in central and northern Europe (Austria, Denmark, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK) in the late summer or autumn (Jor, 1973; Bretherton, 1983; Hachler et al., 1998; Palmqvist, 1998, 2002). There are about 50 records of C. chalcites as a migrant to the UK between 1943 and 1990 (Bretherton, 1983). Outdoor breeding populations occur in Europe as far north as northern Spain and northern Italy. No successful breeding is reported out-of-doors in northern Europe.

Lempke (1982) and Vos and Rutten (1995) noted that C. chalcites is present all year round in glasshouses in the Netherlands. Veire (1993) reported populations established in glasshouses in Belgium. However, there is no evidence that C. chalcites can overwinter outdoors in the Netherlands (Lempke, 1982) or elsewhere in northern Europe.

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Last updated: 24 Jun 2021
Continent/Country/Region Distribution Last Reported Origin First Reported Invasive Reference Notes

Africa

AlgeriaPresentNative
AngolaPresentNative
BeninPresent
Cabo VerdePresentNative
CameroonPresentNative
ComorosPresentNative
Congo, Democratic Republic of thePresent
Côte d'IvoirePresentNative
EgyptPresentNative
GambiaPresentNative
GuineaPresentNative
KenyaPresentNative
LibyaPresentNative
MadagascarPresentNative
MalawiPresentNative
MauritiusPresent, Few occurrencesNative
MoroccoPresentNative
MozambiquePresentNative
NigeriaPresentNative
RéunionPresentNative
Saint HelenaPresentNative
São Tomé and PríncipePresentNative
SenegalPresent, Few occurrencesNative
SeychellesPresentNative
Sierra LeonePresentNative
South AfricaPresentNative
TunisiaPresentNative
UgandaPresentNative
ZambiaPresentNative
ZimbabwePresent, Few occurrencesNative

Asia

BangladeshPresent
CambodiaPresent
IndiaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-DelhiPresent
-PunjabPresent
-RajasthanPresent
IndonesiaPresent
IranPresentNative
IraqPresentNative
IsraelPresentNative
JordanPresentNative
LaosPresent
LebanonPresentNative
PhilippinesPresent
SyriaPresentNative
TurkeyPresentNative
TurkmenistanPresent

Europe

AlbaniaPresentNative
AustriaPresent, Few occurrences
BelgiumPresent, Localized
BulgariaPresent, Localized
CroatiaPresent
CyprusPresentNative
DenmarkPresent, Few occurrences
FrancePresentNative
-CorsicaPresentNative
GermanyPresent, Few occurrences
GreecePresentNative
HungaryPresentNative
ItalyPresentNative
-SicilyPresent
MaltaPresentNative
NetherlandsPresent, Localized
North MacedoniaPresent
PolandPresentin glasshouses
PortugalPresentNative
-AzoresPresent
-MadeiraPresentNative
RomaniaPresentNative
RussiaPresent
SerbiaPresentNative
Serbia and MontenegroPresentNative
SloveniaPresent
SpainPresentNative
-Balearic IslandsPresent
-Canary IslandsPresentNative
SwedenPresent, Few occurrences
SwitzerlandPresent, Few occurrences
United KingdomPresent, Few occurrences

North America

CanadaPresent
-OntarioPresentIntroduced2008Invasive
United StatesPresent
-HawaiiPresent

Oceania

AustraliaPresent
-QueenslandPresent
New ZealandPresent

South America

Chile
-Easter IslandPresent

Risk of Introduction

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C. chalcites is on the A2 quarantine pest list for South Africa (EPPO, 2002). Larvae of C. chalcites can move on hosts traded internationally. For example, C. chalcites have been found carried with Pelargonium from Germany to Hungary (Meszaros and Tusnadi, 1994) and on Chrysanthemum morifolium and Pelargonium from the Canary Isles imported into the UK (Seymour and Kilby, 1978). C. chalcites has also been found in Italy on bananas from the Canary Isles (Jannone, 1966). C. chalcites is a tropical and subtropical pest although it has established in glasshouses in northern Europe, where out-of-doors the climate is unfavourable. There is a risk that it will establish in protected cultivation elsewhere, for example in the USA, where there have been findings in Ohio in glasshouses growing Pelargonium (Passoa, 1995).

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial

Hosts/Species Affected

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C. chalcites is highly polyphagous, feeding on many fruit, vegetable and ornamental crops and weeds in many plant families including Acanthaceae, Asteraceae, Bignoniaceae, Boraginaceae, Brassicaceae, Convolvulaceae, Crassulaceae, Lamiaceae, Fabaceae, Malvaceae, Orchidaceae, Rosaceae, Scrophulariaceae, Solanaceae, Verbenaceae and Violaceae. It can be a pest of crops grown outdoors and in protection, including both shade and glasshouses.

Host Plants and Other Plants Affected

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Plant nameFamilyContextReferences
AeschynanthusOther
    Anethum graveolens (dill)ApiaceaeOther
      Arachis hypogaea (groundnut)FabaceaeOther
      AsterAsteraceaeOther
        Brassica oleracea (cabbages, cauliflowers)BrassicaceaeUnknown
        Brassica oleracea var. botrytis (cauliflower)BrassicaceaeOther
          Brassica oleracea var. capitata (cabbage)BrassicaceaeOther
            Brassica spp.BrassicaceaeOther
              Brassicaceae (cruciferous crops)BrassicaceaeOther
                Cajanus cajan (pigeon pea)FabaceaeUnknown
                Capsicum annuum (bell pepper)SolanaceaeOther
                Chrysanthemum (daisy)AsteraceaeUnknown
                • Valletta (1973)
                Chrysanthemum indicum (chrysanthemum)AsteraceaeOther
                  CitrusRutaceaeOther
                    Cucumis sativus (cucumber)CucurbitaceaeOther
                      Cynara cardunculus var. scolymus (globe artichoke)AsteraceaeOther
                        DahliaAsteraceaeOther
                          Dianthus (carnation)CaryophyllaceaeOther
                            Echium vulgare ((common) viper's-bugloss)BoraginaceaeWild host
                              Ficus benjamina (weeping fig)MoraceaeOther
                                Ficus carica (common fig)MoraceaeOther
                                  Ficus elastica (rubber plant)MoraceaeOther
                                    Fragaria (strawberry)RosaceaeOther
                                      Geranium (cranesbill)GeraniaceaeUnknown
                                      Glycine max (soyabean)FabaceaeMain
                                      Gossypium herbaceum (short staple cotton)MalvaceaeMain
                                        Helianthus tuberosus (Jerusalem artichoke)AsteraceaeOther
                                          Hippeastrum hybrids (amaryllis)LiliaceaeOther
                                            Lactuca sativa (lettuce)AsteraceaeOther
                                              Lycopersicon pennelliiSolanaceaeOther
                                                Marrubium (horehound)LamiaceaeWild host
                                                  Medicago sativa (lucerne)FabaceaeOther
                                                    Musa (banana)MusaceaeOther
                                                      Musa acuminata (wild banana)MusaceaeUnknown
                                                      Nicotiana tabacum (tobacco)SolanaceaeMain
                                                        Onopordum acanthium (scotch thistle)AsteraceaeUnknown
                                                        Pelargonium (pelargoniums)GeraniaceaeOther
                                                          Phaseolus (beans)FabaceaeMain
                                                            Phaseolus vulgaris (common bean)FabaceaeMain
                                                            Salvia officinalis (common sage)LamiaceaeOther
                                                              Solanum (nightshade)SolanaceaeUnknown
                                                              Solanum lycopersicum (tomato)SolanaceaeMain
                                                              Solanum tuberosum (potato)SolanaceaeMain
                                                              Spinacia oleracea (spinach)ChenopodiaceaeUnknown
                                                              Stachytarpheta jamaicensis (Jamaica vervain)VerbenaceaeOther
                                                                Teucrium scorodonia (wood germander)LamiaceaeWild host
                                                                  Tradescantia zebrina (wandering jew)CommelinaceaeOther
                                                                    Trifolium repens (white clover)FabaceaeOther
                                                                      Triticum aestivum (wheat)PoaceaeOther
                                                                      Urtica dioica (stinging nettle)UrticaceaeWild host
                                                                        Zea mays (maize)PoaceaeOther

                                                                          Growth Stages

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                                                                          Flowering stage, Fruiting stage, Seedling stage, Vegetative growing stage

                                                                          List of Symptoms/Signs

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                                                                          SignLife StagesType
                                                                          Fruit / external feeding
                                                                          Leaves / external feeding
                                                                          Leaves / frass visible
                                                                          Leaves / leaves rolled or folded
                                                                          Leaves / webbing
                                                                          Whole plant / external feeding
                                                                          Whole plant / frass visible

                                                                          Biology and Ecology

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                                                                          C. chalcites is a polyvoltine species, with up to eight or nine generations per year in Egypt (Rashid et al., 1971; Harakly and Farag, 1975). After emergence females mate then begin oviposition within 2 or 3 days (Gasim and Younis, 1989). Eggs are laid on upper and lower leaf surfaces at night, whilst females are on the wing, females only briefly touching the leaf to deposit one, two or a few eggs at a time (Harakly and Farag, 1975). Eggs are very widely scattered in the crop (Linden, 1996). At 20°C egg incubation lasts between 5 and 26 days (Gaumont and Moreau, 1961).

                                                                          Reports in the literature show considerable variation in the number of eggs oviposited. Harakly and Farag (1975) reported females laying from 14 to 281 eggs with a mean of 149. In contrast, Gasim and Younis (1989) reported the mean number of eggs laid per female to be much higher with 385, 640 and 405 eggs at 20, 25 and 30°C, respectively.

                                                                          Gasim and Younis (1989) studied the development rate of C. chalcites eggs at three temperatures, 20, 25 and 30°C. The mean length of time between oviposition and egg hatch decreased with increasing temperature. At the lower temperature eggs took 4.5 days to hatch, at 25°C they took an average of 3.0 days and at the upper temperature they took 2.0 days. In mild winters eggs are laid outdoors in northern Italy and development continues although larval mortality is often high (Tremblay, 1975).

                                                                          First-instar larvae graze on the underside of leaves feeding on parenchyma. They can be quite difficult to detect. A larva will drop from the leaf and hang on a silken thread if disturbed (Goodey, 1991). During the second and third instars the larva begins to roll the edges of the leaves together and silken threads are spun on infested leaves (Rashid et al., 1971). Later instars eat through the leaves making infested leaves appear skeletonized. The last two larval instars are the most voracious feeders and will usually eat the entire leaf but may avoid the midrib, or other large veins. On legumes they may excavate deep into pods, sometimes cutting them in two. At the optimal temperature of 25°C there are six larval instars, each lasts approximately 2.5 to 3.5 days (Rashid et al., 1971; Harakly and Farag, 1975). At cooler temperatures the entire larval period lasts 44 to 50 days (Gaumont and Moreau, 1961).

                                                                          The mature larva stops feeding and enters a prepupal stage. It spins a cocoon within which it pupates. The cocoon is usually attached to the underside of a leaf but can be in the soil (Harakly and Farag, 1975). Gaumont and Moreau (1961) reported that the pupal period lasted 15 to 26 days although at the optimal temperature of 25°C it averages 8.8 days (Rashid et al., 1971).

                                                                          Adults emerge and soon begin to fly and mate. They rest with the wings folded over their back like a tent. Adults are semi-nocturnal and usually avoid strong sunlight. Generations continually breed through the year with no diapause. There are nine generations per year in Egypt (Harakly and Farag, 1975). In Spain the largest populations occur in August and September (Izquierdo et al., 1996) although in Bulgaria maximum densities are recorded between April and June (Lecheva and Loginova, 1988).

                                                                          Natural enemies

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                                                                          Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
                                                                          Bacillus thuringiensis alesti Pathogen Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Compsilura concinnata Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Copidosoma truncatellum Parasite Hawaii
                                                                          Cotesia kazak Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Cotesia marginiventris Parasite Arthropods|Larvae Cape Verde cabbages; tomatoes
                                                                          Cotesia ruficrus Parasite Arthropods|Larvae New Zealand
                                                                          Ctenochares bicolorus Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Drino imberbis Parasite Arthropods|Larvae; Arthropods|Pupae
                                                                          Eulophus pennicornis Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Meteorus gyrator Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Meteorus pulchricornis Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Nemorilla maculosa Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Nomuraea rileyi Pathogen
                                                                          Pales pavida Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Pimpla hypochondriaca Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Pseudogonia rufifrons Parasite Arthropods|Larvae; Arthropods|Pupae
                                                                          Stomoxys calcitrans Parasite Arthropods|Larvae not specific
                                                                          Stomoxys calcitrans Parasite Sankar et al. (2005)
                                                                          Sturmia bella Parasite Arthropods|Larvae
                                                                          Telenomus busseolae Parasite Eggs
                                                                          Trichogramma achaeae Parasite Eggs Cape Verde Brassica; cabbages; tomatoes
                                                                          Trichogramma canariensis Parasite Eggs Pino et al. (2013)
                                                                          Trichogramma evanescens Parasite Eggs
                                                                          Voria ruralis Parasite Arthropods|Larvae

                                                                          Notes on Natural Enemies

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                                                                          The hymenopteran parasitoid Eulophus pennicornis was found in glasshouse sweet peppers in Belgium parasitizing C. chalcites (Veire, 1993). Two parasitoids are recorded from Spain, Cotesia kazak and Meteorus pulchricornis. In surveys, 31.4% of larvae were parasitized (Cabello, 1989). Parasitic wasps attacking C. chalcites prefer to target groups of eggs, where they can oviposit all their eggs in one go (Linden, 1996).

                                                                          Means of Movement and Dispersal

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                                                                          C. chalcites is not recorded as a vector.

                                                                          Plant Trade

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                                                                          Plant parts liable to carry the pest in trade/transportPest stagesBorne internallyBorne externallyVisibility of pest or symptoms
                                                                          Fruits (inc. pods) eggs; larvae Yes Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye
                                                                          Leaves eggs; larvae Yes Pest or symptoms usually visible to the naked eye

                                                                          Wood Packaging

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                                                                          Wood Packaging not known to carry the pest in trade/transport
                                                                          Loose wood packing material
                                                                          Non-wood
                                                                          Processed or treated wood
                                                                          Solid wood packing material with bark
                                                                          Solid wood packing material without bark

                                                                          Impact

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                                                                          C. chalcites is a polyphagous polyvoltine species that feeds on the foliage and fruit of vegetable, fruit and ornamental crops. It is considered as one of the most serious lepidopteran pests in many countries although quantitative data measuring damage is lacking.

                                                                          C. chalcites is the major pest of tomato in Israel during the growing season (Broza and Sneh, 1994) causing considerable damage to the leaves and vegetative parts of the plant although it does not bore into the fruit (Harakly and Farag, 1975). In Israel it is also one of the most important noctuid pests of fodder crops such as lucerne and clover (Avidov and Harpaz, 1969). It also feeds on lucerne, maize and soyabean in Spain (Amate et al., 1998). In northern Italy, C. chalcites is one of the principal arthropod pests on soyabean (Zandigiacomo, 1990); it also attacks fields of artichokes (Ippolito and Parenzan, 1985). In Egypt, C. chalcites is considered as the most serious of all semi-looper pests attacking field fruit and vegetables. It is a serious pest of potato in Mauritius (Anon., 1984).

                                                                          In protected cultivation, C. chalcites can occur at any time of the year (Linden, 1996) where it can reach high levels of infestation on vegetables and ornamental plants. It is reported as a serious pest in Bulgaria and Turkey (Loginova, 1992; Uygun and Ozgur, 1980) affecting tomato, cucumber and peppers. C. chalcites is one of the four main noctuid pests of glasshouse crops in Sicily (Inserra and Calabretta, 1985) and a continual pest in glasshouses in the Netherlands (Vos and Rutten, 1995) and Belgium (Veire, 1983).

                                                                          Detection and Inspection

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                                                                          Leaves should be examined on upper and lower surfaces for larvae. Damage symptoms such as skeletonized or rolled leaves with webbing may be easier to detect.

                                                                          Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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                                                                          In Africa and Europe, C. chalcites may be confused with C. acuta although C. acuta is larger and has a more pointed forewing. The silver spots are also larger (Bretherton, 1983).

                                                                          In the USA immigrant C. chalcites appear similar to Pseudoplusia includens. Larvae should be reared to adulthood to confirm their identity (Passoa, 1995).

                                                                          The relationship between C. chalcites and C. eriosoma needs clarification (Holloway et al., 1987).

                                                                          Prevention and Control

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                                                                          Due to the variable regulations around (de)registration of pesticides, your national list of registered pesticides or relevant authority should be consulted to determine which products are legally allowed for use in your country when considering chemical control. Pesticides should always be used in a lawful manner, consistent with the product's label.

                                                                          Pyrethroids such as cypermethrin or deltamethrin can give control of C. chalcites. Bassi et al. (2000) reported effective control of C. chalcites using indoxacarb (an oxadiazine) on vegetable crops in open fields and plastic houses in Italy. Misappropriate use of chemicals can lead to the development of resistance.

                                                                          The insect growth regulator cyromazine, gave good control of second- and fourth-instar larvae of C. chalcites in glasshouses on tomatoes, lettuce and ornamentals when applied as a foliar spray (Veire and Degheele, 1994).

                                                                          Different strains of Bacillus thuringiensis gave full control (100% efficacy) of C. chalcites when sprayed on tomatoes grown under net protection or in non-heated greenhouses in Sicily, Italy (Vacante et al., 2001). B. thuringiensis var. kurstaki is used to control C. chalcites in Israel (Broza and Sneh, 1994).

                                                                          Toguebaye and Bouix (1983) demonstrated that the entomopathogenic fungus Nosema manierae can kill C. chalcites larvae in a few days.

                                                                          Pheromone trapping has been used in field experiments in Israel. The most effective lure was found to be a mixture of 1 mg (Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate and 0.2 mg (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetate absorbed on rubber septa (Dunkelblum et al., 1981). Pheromone trapping has been tried in glasshouses in the Netherlands but has not proved successful (Bos, 1983).

                                                                          There are reports of natural enemies providing some control in protected conditions. The natural enemies predate or parasitize eggs and larvae. In Italian glasshouses the predatory pentatomid heteropterans Podisus maculiventris and P. nigrispinus both from North America have been tested as control agents (Vacante et al., 1996). In the UK, under controlled conditions the endoparasitic braconid Meteorus gyrator showed considerable potential as a biocontrol agent against C. chalcites. Parasitized larvae showed an 80% reduction in the weight of tomato leaf-tissue eaten although this level of control was not shown under less controlled, commercial conditions (Bell et al., 2000). Research has shown that because the eggs are laid singly and widely apart, parasitization and predation cannot progress efficiently. However, there has been some success. For example, Pizzol et al. (1997) released 7000 Trichogramma evanescens in 800 m² of a tomato crop grown under glass in France, on three occasions, 15 days apart. This action resulted in 82% of C. chalcites eggs being parasitized. In the Cape Verde Islands, the solitary endoparasitoid Cotesia marginiventris was introduced with some success for the control of C. chalcites in the field (Lobo Lima and Harten, 1985).

                                                                          It is not only invertebrates that can be used as natural control agents. Linden (2000) describes an experiment where Alcippe brunnea, a bird found in dense forest undergrowth in India, successfully controlled C. chalcites on sweet peppers grown in glasshouses in the Netherlands.

                                                                          References

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