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|February 22, 2017|
Pest threatens southern California’s iconic palm trees
Southland -The Red Palm Weevil is a serious pest of palm trees. The beetle’s first North American detection in Laguna Beach surprised entomologists.
Since the nearest known population of Red Palm Weevil to North America was in Aruba, Florida was the more likely assumption for the first infestation in the U.S.
The larvae causes the most damage to palms and prefer to feed in the inside of the crown working their way to the trunk.
Entomologist Dr. Mark Hoddle of UC Riverside says local palm trees are vulnerable to infestation.
“The Red Palm Weevil has high potential for infesting a lot of our ornamental palms in the Inland Empire. Many of the preferred varieties that we grow in our urban area are highly desirable for the Red Palm Weevil as a food source,” he said.
The pupa of the weevil is one way to diagnose the infestation.
A significant tool in combating the beetle will be reported sightings made by the public.
More information is available on the Center for Invasive Species Research website; http://cisr.ucr.edu/red_palm_weevil.html
Story Date: November 22, 2010