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Biocontrol introduction

Target pest: Phthorimaea operculella (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae), potato tuber moth

Agent introduced: Apanteles scutellaris (Hymenoptera: Braconidae)

Imported:

1966-67, 1969-70

Import source:

Northern Argentina and southern Brazil via India

Import notes:

Cameron et al. (1989) - between November 1966 and March 1967 there were six shipments of A. scutellaris from the Commonwealth Institute of Biological Control station in India to Nelson, New Zealand, with all individuals being directly released. Between November 1969 and April 1970 there were a further five shipments of A. scutellaris from India to Nelson, all of which were directly released. The A. scutellaris material had been originally sourced from northern Argentina and southern Brazil in 1963-64 and cultured at the Californian Station of CIBC; when this station closed, the colony was transferred to the Indian Station of CIBC, from where the 1966-67 and 1969-70 shipments were made to New Zealand.

Released:

1966

Release details:

Cameron et al. (1989) - approximate numbers released from the 1966-67 importations were 945 at Lincoln, Canterbury and Oamaru, North Otago, South Island (specific numbers at each site was not clear in the records). Approximate numbers released from the 1969-70 importations were 530 at Lincoln/Oamaru and 495 at Nelson, South Island.

Establishment:

Cameron et al. (1989) - sporadic examination of potato tubers and foliage at Oamaru, North Otago and Lincoln, Canterbury for P. opercullela parasitoids was undertaken between mid-1967 and late-1973; there are no records of A. scutellaris being detected. Apanteles scutellaris released at Nelson in 1969-70 were not known to have bred in that season.

References

Cameron PJ, Hill RL, Bain J, Thomas WP (1989). A Review of Biological Control of Invertebrate Pests and Weeds in New Zealand 1874-1987. Technical Communication No 10. CAB International Institute of Biological Control. DSIR Entomology Division. 424p.