Natural efficiency of parasitism by Billaea rhynchophorae (Blanchard) (Diptera: Tachinidae) for the control of Rhynchophorus palmarum (L.) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae)

Eficiência do parasitismo natural por Billaea rhynchophorae (Blanchard) (Diptera: Tachinidae) para o controle de Rhynchophorus palmarum (L.) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae)

The occurrence of the tachinid parasitoid Billaea rhynchophorae (Blanchard) on larvae of the palm weevil Rhynchophorus palmarum (L.) was evaluated in plantations of piassava palm (Attalea funifera Mart.) and African oil palm (Elaeis guineensis Jacquin), in southeastern Bahia, Brazil. The monthly percentages of parasitism were evaluated during 13 months, from November 2000 to November 2001, based on the comparison between the number of parasitized and non-parasitized cocoons of R. palmarum. Mean parasitism was 40% and ranged from 50% in November 2000 to 18% in July 2001. While there is no method of mass reproduction of the parasitoid, a simple management practice is recommended, in order to preserve its beneficial effects in palm plantations.

Attalea funifera; Elaeis guineensis; palm tree; Bursaphelenchus cocophilus; red ring disease

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