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Indagine su Henosepilachna elaterii (Rossi) (=Epilachna chrysomelina (F.)) e Raphidopalpa foveicollis (Lucas) in meloneti biologici della Sicilia occidentale.

  • Publication year: 2011
  • Type: eedings
  • Key words: Coleoptera, film mulching, traps
  • OA Link:


Investigations on Henosepilachna elaterii (Rossi) and Raphidopalpa foveicollis (Lucas) in an organic cultivation of winter melon in western Sicily. A study on H. elaterii and R. Foveicollis, serious pests of winter melon, was conducted in two organic melon fields of the western Sicily. Dynamics of population and infestation levels were investigated. In addition, the possible influence of mulching on R. Foveicollis infestation has been taken into account. Our results showed that H. elaterii occurred only in one field from the beginning of June and it infested 60% of the plants in the mid-July, then the pest population density dropped to about 10%. R. foveicollis occurred in both locations from the beginning of June and reached high levels of population density around the mid-June; then the pest density rapidly decreased in the two following weeks. Adults were found in the traps and the peak catches occurred in mid-June. A greater number of catches was found in the traps placed between the rows and the greater number of individuals has been detected on plants of the not mulched plots. The percentage of plants with damaged leaves ranged from 68.7% to 100% on mulched plots and 93.3% to 100% on not mulched plots. In conclusion, the damages inflicted by R. foveicollis are counterbalanced by the rapid growing rate of the plant occurring during June. Hence, this pest may cause serious injuries only in case of heavy infestation on winter melon seedlings. Similarly, the damage caused by H. elaterii is usually not heavy even if presence of high levels of infestation.