Biodiversity of insect and mite pests infesting fig in the Indian Punjab
Punjab falls in the north-west subtropical zone of India wherein 17 fruit crops of sub-tropical, tropical and temperate climatic requirements are being grown commercially. Fig is a new crop introduced in Punjab. Fixed plot surveys were carried out in the fig plantations grown in College orchard of the Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, Punjab, India to study the biodiversity of insect and mite pests. The life stages of the insect and mite pests were collected and reared in the Fruit Entomology Laboratory in the Department of Fruit Science. This study reports 14 insect and mite pests and 1 pollinator from Punjab on different parts of fig tree, belonging to order Lepidoptera (4), Coleoptera (3), Hemiptera (3), Diptera (2), Hymenoptera (1), Thysanoptera (1) and Acarina (1). Major insect-pests observed were fig leaf roller, Phycodes minor Moore and P. radiata Ochsenheimer, fig borer or red spotted long horned beetle, Batocera rufomaculata DeGeer and B. rubus (Linnaeus), hairy caterpillars, Euproctis lunata Walker and Spilaractia obliqua (Walker), fruit flies, Bactrocera dorsalis and B. zonata, cottony cushion scale, Icerya sp., aphid, Aphis gossypii Glover and two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch. Among unidentified insects, whitefly, fruit weevils and thrips were observed. Fig wasp, Blastophaga sp., was observed to be the pollinator of the fig. Fig leaf rollers were active during July-September. Damage by fig borer was observed during August-September and December. Fruit flies were observed damaging ripe fig fruits during the first week of June. Fig wasps that pollinate fig fruits and fruit weevils were recovered from fig fruits during last week of April. Aphid, Myzus persicae was observed on leaves during August-September. Minute whiteflies were observed sucking sap from leaves during August. Attack of red thrips was observed on fig fruits in December and on leaves during April. Mite infestation was observed mainly during March-June and September-October.
Singh, S. and Kaur, G. 2017. Biodiversity of insect and mite pests infesting fig in the Indian Punjab. Acta Hort. (ISHS) 1173:257-262
fig, survey, biodiversity, pollinator, Punjab