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The biology and phenology of Arenipses sabella Hmps. and Cadra figulilella (Gregson) (Lepidoptera, Pyralidae) on dates in israel *

  • M. Kehat (a1) and S. Greenberg (a1)

Larvae of Arenipses sabella Hmps., a serious pest of date palm trees in Israel, developed normally on inflorescences, immature or ripe rates and on green fruits of Phoenix canariensis, and their development at 30°C. took 34–45 days. Survival of males and fertilised famales was 10.8–12.0 days at 25°C. and 7.0–8.2 days at 27°C. No difference was found between survival of males and females, but unfertilised females lived rather longer than fertilised famales. The total production of eggs per female was 285 eggs at 25°C. and 328 at 27°C. At 25°C. 825 per cent. of the eggs were laid during the sixth and seventh nights of the female’s life, at 27°C. 74 per cent. were laid during the third and fourth nights. The total number of eggs laid by unfertilised females was lower than that of fertilised ones. The number of females fertilised was dependent on the number of males present in the rearing cage.

In Israel, only two generations of A. sabella— those in the spring and in the late autumn—become sufficiently large to be of economic importance. Damage occurs during only a short period in spring, when inflorescences, toung fruits and fruit stalks are attacked. In autumn and winter most larvae enter diapause. In the laboratory, the moth passes through four generations a year and even at the relatively high temperatures maintained during the winter the larvae entered a diapause.

Cadra figulilella (Gregson) is a serious pest of ripening dates in Israel and damages fruit still on the tree and also after it has been picked, if it is not then fumigated.

The time taken for development at 30°C. was 54–65 days. At this temperature adults lived for 4–6 days and the average number of eggs laid per fertilised female was 160. Unfertilised females laid fewer eggs. Most of the eggs were laid during the second and third nights after emergence of the female. The number of fertilised females depended on the number of males present in the rearing cage.

A few larvae were observed in the plantation in dropped, decaying dates throughout the year, but attack on the bunches started only when the fruit began to ripen.

Azinophos-methyl (E.C.20%) 0.5 per cent. and diazinon (E.C.25%) 0.5 per cent. were the most effective of the compounds tested. Application when the colour of the fruit began to change and again three or four weeks later resulted in excellent control of the pset.

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Bulletin of Entomological Research
  • ISSN: 0007-4853
  • EISSN: 1475-2670
  • URL: /core/journals/bulletin-of-entomological-research
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