Tracking the pink hibiscus mealybug (Maconellicoccus hirsutus green) and the success of its parasitoids in Miami–Dade county, Florida, using the GPS/GIS mapping system

Divina M. Amalin, Lizandra Lizandra Nieves-Rivera, Amy Roda, Catharine Mannion


The movement of Anagyrus kamali Moursi and Gyranusoidea indica Shafee, two parasitoids of pink hibiscus mealybug (PHM), Maconellicoccus hirsutus Green (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae), was assessed in the initial infested core area in Miami–Dade County where these parasitoids were released. A comprehensive survey was done to determine the spread of the mealybug infestation and its parasitoids beyond the original parasitoid release sites. The survey consisted of two randomly selected areas in Miami–Dade County: central Miami and Kendall. A total of 80 parasitoid releases from Jan. 2003 to June 2003 were made at the initial infested core area in central Miami and Kendall with 9,600 and 11,400 total numbers of A. kamali and G. indica, respectively. Each survey area was divided into 6 transects starting at the boundary line of the known parasitoid release sites and initial infested core area. A total of 90 and 80 locations were surveyed in central Miami and Kendall areas, respectively. The data collected in Sept. 2004 were evaluated and presented using Geographic Information System (GIS) program (ESRI®). GIS mapping of the data showed that PHM had not spread widely beyond the initial infested core area in both the central Miami and Kendall areas from the initial detection. Out of 90 locations in the central Miami area, only 5 locations had PHM infestations. In the Kendall area, 8 locations out of 80 surveyed locations had PHM infestations. All locations with PHM infestations also had PHM parasitized by A. kamali and G. indica, which confirmed the movement of these parasitoids along with PHM.

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Proc. Fla. State Hort. Soc.     ISSN 0886-7283