The first photographic documentation and new data on Enteucha guajavae (Lepidoptera, Nepticulidae), a pest of guava from equatorial America

Publication Type:Conference Proceedings
Year of Conference:2014
Authors:A. Remeikis, Stonis, J. Rimantas, Diškus, A., Davis, D. R.
Editor:J. Rimantas Stonis
Conference Name:Selected abstracts and papers of the First Baltic International Conference on Field Entomology and Faunistics.
Publisher:Edukologija Publishers
Conference Location:Vilnius
Keywords:Ecuador, Enteucha guajavae, host plant, Lepidoptera, Myrtaceae, Nepticulidae

Pygmy moths (Nepticulidae) are economically important because these insects are often recognized as pestsor potential pests (dozens of species have been listed as pests of cultivated plants, see Kuznetzov & Puplesis,1994). This article deals with a previously poorly known leaf-miner of Enteucha Meyrick, a pest of guava.The common guava (Psidium guajava, Myrtaceae) (or guayaba in Spanish) is one of the most popularfruit trees (particularly in Latin America). The guava is widely cultivated in tropical and subtropicalregions around the world, although it is native to the Neotropics (Central America and probably morewidespread). It is an evergreen small tree or shrub, which florishes in a moist tropical environment but cantolerate drought conditions.The small genus Enteucha, belonging to the plant-mining (predominantly leaf-mining) family Nepticulidae,includes several described species, the majority of which are known from the Neotropics: E. cyanochloraMeyrick, 1915; E. gilvafascia (Davis, 1978); E. hilli Puplesis & Robinson, 2000; E. contracoloreaPuplesis & Robinson, 2000; E. terricula Puplesis & Robinson, 2000; E. snaddoni Puplesis & Robinson, 2000;E. acuta Puplesis & Diškus, 2002; and E. guajavae Puplesis & Diškus, 2002 (Puplesis & Robinson, 2000;Puplesis et al., 2002b). Although the biology and host-plants of most of the species are still unknown, thelatter species – E. guajavae – was described from reared material as a monophagous leaf-miner on Psidiumguajava (Puplesis et al., 2002a). To date this is only guava-feeding species among Nepticulidae; however,after the species first discovery in 2001, no more data on E. guajavae have been published or collected. Ourrecent searches for plant-mining larvae on Psidium guajava in Bucay (a type locality of E. guajavae) andother localities of central Ecuador, Colombia, Guatemala, and Mexico have brought no results (except fora few empty old leaf-mines observed at the type locality in March–April 2005 and 2007). This could bebecause our searches were either too sporadic (seldom and unfocused) , or because of the restricted distributionsof the species.A recent business trip to La Universidad Técnica Particular de Loja (southern Ecuador), undertaken inFebruary 2014 by the first two authors, has resulted in the rediscovery of E. guajavae and revealed new dataon the species biology, distribution and female morphology.In the original description of the species (see Puplesis et al., 2002a), the ink drawings of the genitaliaare quite accurate but they did not show all details of the female genitalia or leaf-mines. Here, on the basisof new material, we present a re-description of E. guajavae, with the first photographic documentation ofthe leaf-mines, adults, and genitalia.

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