NATURAL ENEMIES OF TWO MAJOR SPECIES OF SCALE INSECTS INFESTING BLACK PEPPER (Piper nigrum L.) IN INDIA

SELVAKUMARAN S, KALLIL MINI, DEVASAHAYAM S

Abstract


Among the insect pests of black pepper  (Piper nigrmn L.) in India, scale insects and  mealybugs cause considerable damage to the  crop (Devasahayam er al., 1988). Twenty  three genera/species of scale insects and  mealybugs have been recorded on the crop in  India among which the mussel scale,  Lepidosaphes piperis Gr. and the coconut  scale, Aspilliotus destrucfor Sign. (Homoptera  : Diaspididae) cause appreciable damage  especially at higher altitudes (Abdulla Koya  et aI., 1996). Severe infestations of these pests  lead to yellowing and wilting of leaves, drying  of lateral branches and mortality of younger  vines. The pest infestation is severe during  postanonsoon and summer periods.


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