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Insect pest of Pomegranate in Hot Arid Region

Pomegranate Butterfly (Deudorix isocrates)

  • It is widely distributed all over India and is found wherever pomegranates are grown.

Host Range

  • It is a polyphagous pest having a very wide range of host plants, including, aonla, apple, ber, citrus, guava, litchi, loquat, mulberry, peach, pear, plum, pomegranate, sapota and tamarind.

Nature of Damage

  • On hatching, the caterpillars bore inside the developing fruits and are usually found feeding on pulp and seeds just below the rind.
  • As many as eight caterpillars may be found in a single fruit.
  • The conspicuous symptoms of damage are offensive smell and excreta of the caterpillars coming out of entry holes, the excreta are found stuck around the holes.
Damage symptoms of anar butter fly
  • Sometimes the holes may also be seen plugged with the anal end of a caterpillar.
  • The affected fruits ultimately fall down and are of no use.

Description

  • Eggs are laid singly on calyx of flowers or tender fruits.
  • Caterpillar is stoutly built dirty brown in colour, with light patches, a few short hairs and measures about 16-20 mm long.
Adults is bluish brown
  • Larval period is 18-47 days.
  • The adult is bluish brown.
  • On female adult V shaped patch on forewing.

Fruit sucking moths (Eudocima fullonica & E. maternal)

  • This pest is distributed in Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Philippines, Hawai, Thailand, India etc. The caterpillars of these are leaf defoliators on weed hosts viz., Tinospora cardifolia, Cocculus pendulus and C. hirsutus.

Host Range

  • Besides citrus, it also attacks pomegranate, grapes, apple, castor, ber, guava etc.

Nature of Damage

  • It is only the moths that are destructive to citrus fruits.
  • The moths are distinguished by having particularly well developed proboscis with dentate tips with which they are able to pierce the ripening fruits.
  • The moths are nocturnal in habit and may be seen flying about in orchards after dusk especially during rainy season.
  • The damaged fruits soon start rotting as the punctured regions are easily infected with bacteria and fungi and ultimately the fruits drop prematurely.

Description

  • The adults of O. fullonica has pale orange brown body with forewings dark greyish and the hind wings orange red with two black curved patches.
  • The adults of O. materna has pale greenish gray upper wings with pale white markings and the lower wings with a marginal dark brown region mixed with white spots and a circular dark spot.
Hind wings orangered with circular dark spot
  • The caterpillar is a semilooper, dark brown with yellow and red spots.
  • Full grown caterpillars are 50 - 60 mm long, stout, velvety-blue with yellow patterns on dorsal and lateral sides and having a hump at anal end.

Source: Insect Pest Of Arid Fruit Crops

IPM for Pomegranate

To know the IPM practices for Pomegranate, click here.



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