African Journal of
Agricultural Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Agric. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1991-637X
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJAR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 6656

Full Length Research Paper

Natural occurrence of Diadiplosis megalamellae (Barnes) in mealybugs on roses in Kenya

Anouk H. J. Hoogendoorn
  • Anouk H. J. Hoogendoorn
  • The Real IPM Company (K) Ltd, P. O. Box 4001-01002, Madaraka, Thika, Kenya.
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Ruth Murunde
  • Ruth Murunde
  • The Real IPM Company (K) Ltd, P. O. Box 4001-01002, Madaraka, Thika, Kenya.
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Evans Otieno
  • Evans Otieno
  • The Real IPM Company (K) Ltd, P. O. Box 4001-01002, Madaraka, Thika, Kenya.
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Henry Wainwright
  • Henry Wainwright
  • The Real IPM Company (K) Ltd, P. O. Box 4001-01002, Madaraka, Thika, Kenya.
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  •  Received: 15 October 2018
  •  Accepted: 27 November 2018
  •  Published: 03 January 2019

Abstract

Over the last decade there has been an increasing adoption of Integrated Pest Management on rose farms in Kenya. As a consequence, there has been a rise in secondary pests on rose plants, including in particular the citrus mealybug Planococcus citri (Risso). On cut flowerrose farms in Kenya, the presence of the predatory midge Diadiplosis megalamellae (Barnes) (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae) was observed. Therefore, a survey was carried out to quantify the occurrence of D. megalamellae and the association with mealybug infestations in commercial cut flower rose crops in Kenya. Four farms in four different regions of Kenya and eight rose varieties were surveyed. The midge D. megalamellae was present on farms located in Naivasha, Nairobi and Thika, but was absent in Nanyuki region. The midge D. megalamellae was found mainly in P. citri mealybug colonies and, although in much lower numbers, in the long tailed mealybug Pseudococcus longispinus (Targioni Tozzetti) colonies. The number of mealybugs was positively correlated with the number of number of D. megalamellae larvae suggesting increased multiplication of the D. megalamellae when the pest is present in larger numbers. The number of mealybugs increased with an increase in altitude at which a rose farm was located but there were no D. megalamellae present at the high altitude farm. The reasons for differences in mealybug population between farms is discussed along with further work needed, however, as an indigenous Kenyan predator, this midge offers potential for mealybug biocontrol on rose farms in Kenya.

Key words: Pseudococcidae, Cecidomyiidae, biological control, predatory midge.