Bagrada Bug Back in 2010

The Bagrada bug is back in low desert California and Arizona farm fields this spring, according to research entomologist John Palumbo of the University of Arizona (UA).

Palumbo discovered adult Bagrada bugs on cabbage in Yuma, Ariz., in mid-April. A pest control adviser found a large aggregation of adults feeding on a single London rocket weed in the middle of a watermelon field in California's Coachella Valley.

"The Bagrada bug is back in 2010," said Palumbo, based at the UA's Yuma Agricultural Center in Yuma.
The Bagrada bug was first found in the low desert last August. Baffled growers, PCAs, and entomologists found chewed up plants in some cole crop fields in southern California and southwestern Arizona.

Adult and nymph Bagrada bugs suck sap from young leaves. Feeding causes small puncture marks visible as white patches on leaf edges. A heavily-attacked plant has a scorched appearance. The damage can result in plant death, plants without heads ("blind head"), or multiple heads too small for the commercial market.

The Bagrada bug is a stinkbug native to Africa, India and Pakistan.Read more from the May 3 issue of Western Farm Press at the address below.

Contact name: 
John Palumbo
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Released date: 
Jun 12 2010