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1 April 2014 Coptoborus ochromactonus, n. sp. (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae), an Emerging Pest of Cultivated Balsa (Malvales: Malvaceae) in Ecuador
Abby R. Stilwell, Sarah M. Smith, Anthony I. Cognato, Malena Martinez, R. Wills Flowers
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Abstract

A new species of xyleborine ambrosia beetle has been found to attack balsa, Ochroma pyramidale (Cavanilles ex Lamarck) Urban, in Ecuador. Coptoborus ochromactonus Smith & Cognato is described and its biology is reported. Large-scale surveys were conducted between 2006 and 2009, and observational studies were carried out between 2010 and 2013 in Ecuadorian commercial plantations to determine life history and host preference characteristics. C. ochromactonus attacked balsa between 1.5 and 3 yr in age. Successful attacks were more prevalent in smaller diameter trees and unhealthy trees. In general, attacks and beetle-caused mortality were more prevalent during the dry summer months when trees were under more moisture and light stress. Fungal mycelia were consistently observed coating beetle galleries and are likely the true damaging agent to balsa trees.

© 2014 Entomological Society of America
Abby R. Stilwell, Sarah M. Smith, Anthony I. Cognato, Malena Martinez, and R. Wills Flowers "Coptoborus ochromactonus, n. sp. (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae), an Emerging Pest of Cultivated Balsa (Malvales: Malvaceae) in Ecuador," Journal of Economic Entomology 107(2), 675-683, (1 April 2014). https://doi.org/10.1603/EC13559
Received: 18 December 2013; Accepted: 1 January 2014; Published: 1 April 2014
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