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Infestation of Raoiella indica hirst (Trombidiformes: Tenuipalpidae) on host plants of high socio-economic importance for tropical America
Otero Colina, Gabriel (coaut.) ; González Gómez, Rebeca (coaut.) ; Martínez Bolaños, L. (coaut.) ; Otero Prevost, L. G. (coaut.) ; López Buenfil, J. A. (coaut.) ; Escobedo Graciamedrano, R. M. (coaut.) ;
Contenido en: Neotropical Entomology Vol. 45, no. 3 (June 2016), p. 300–309 ISSN: 1678-8052
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Resumen en inglés

The mite Raoiella indica Hirst was recently introduced into America, where it has shown amazing ability to disseminate and broaden its range of hosts. An experiment was conducted in Cancún, Mexico, to determine infestation levels of this mite on plants recorded as hosts: coconut palm (Cocos nucifera) of cultivars Pacific Tall and Malayan Dwarf, oil palm (Elaeis guineensis) hybrids Deli x Ghana and Deli x Nigeria, Dwarf Giant banana (Musa acuminata, AAA subgroup Cavendish), Horn plantain (M. acuminata x Musa balbisiana, AAB subgroup Plantain), lobster claw (Heliconia bihai), and red ginger (Alpinia purpurata). Nursery plants of these host species or cultivars were artificially infested with R. indica in February 2011. In the four replications of 10 plants, each plant was infested with 200 R. indica specimens, and the numbers of infesting mites were recorded for 6 months. A maximum of 18,000 specimens per plant were observed on coconut Pacific Tall and Malayan Dwarf, followed by lobster claw, with a maximum of 1000 specimens per plant. Infestations were minimal for the remaining plants. Mite numbers on all plants declined naturally during the rainy season. All plant materials sustained overlapping mite generations, indicating that they are true hosts. Complementarily, infestation level was determined in backyard bananas and plantains. Correlations of infestation with plant height, distance from coconuts, and exposure to direct sunlight were estimated. Both bananas and plantains were infested by R. indica even when situated far from infested coconut palms. A Spearman correlation was found between infestation and plant height, although it was significant only for Silk plantain.