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Biocontrol introduction

Target pests:

Agent introduced: Hemisarcoptes coccophagus (Astigmata: Hemisarcoptidae)

Imported: 1987

Import source: Israel

Import notes: Charles et al. (1995) - more than 1,000 field-collected and laboratory-reared individuals imported. From the field collected as hypopodes (non-feeding deuteronymphs, the second nymphal stage, adapted for clinging to arthropods or vertebrates) under elytra of the ladybird Chilocorus bipustulatus; laboratory-reared individuals imported as adults and immatures in a laboratory colony of California red scale (Aonidiella aurantii).

Released: 1987-1993

Release details: Charles et al. (1995) - 120,000 individuals released at four sites in Kerikeri (Northland), 92,000 at two sites in Whangarei (Northland), 82,000 at two sites in Auckland, 64,000 at five sites in Tauranga (Bay of Plenty), 4,200 at one site in Te Puke (Bay of Plenty), 109,000 at six sites in Gisborne (Poverty Bay) and 9,400 at five sites in Nelson. The first few releases were as deuteronymphs in drinking straws, but most subsequent releases were as active colonies on scale-infested pumpkins or potatoes. Released into shelterbelt trees and/or woody weeds adjacent to kiwifruit blocks. Subsequent to the above releases, releases from the laboratory colony to other sites in New Zealand continued into 1995.

Establishment: Charles et al. (1995) - a survey in 1993 recovered H. coccophagus from one Kerikeri, Auckland, Bay of Plenty and Nelson site, and three sites in Gisborne. It is regarded as having established in New Zealand.


Charles JG, Hill MG and Allan DJ (1995). Releases and recoveries of Chilocorus spp. (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) and Hemisarcoptes spp. (Acari: Hemisarcoptidae) in kiwifruit orchards: 1987-93. New Zealand Journal of Zoology 22: 319-324