First report of Agrilus planipennis in the region of Moscow, Russia
In Russia, Agrilus planipennis (Coleoptera: Buprestidae - EPPO A1 List) was first reported from the Far East as Agrilus marcopoli (Alexeev, 1979) which was later considered a synonym of A. planipennis. So far, A. planipennis is not a regulated pest for Russia. In 2005, several specimens of an unusual Buprestidae were observed in the city of Moscow (in several instances walking on the pavement!). Similar insects had already been observed in 2003. Specimens were sent to Dr Alexeev who identified the pest as being A. planipennis. In 2006, more beetles were found in the city of Moscow as well as in the surroundings (30 km west of the city). It is estimated that in the city of Moscow, around 20% of the planted tree species are Fraxinus (mainly Fraxinus pennsylvanica and to a lesser extent F. excelsior). Many declining or dying Fraxinus trees are being observed in city squares or along railway tracks. In some places, 70-80% of the Fraxinus trees have lost most of their foliage, usually with a few remaining green branches at the base of the trees. Some A. planipennis adults could be observed on the lower branches, both on healthy looking and stressed trees. The source of this introduction remains unknown but different hypotheses are envisaged. In the 1990s, many large trees were imported from Canada (although the pest was not known to occur there at that time) and planted in the city along roads or in private gardens. It is also suggested that A. planipennis may have been introduced from Asia with wood packing material. It is stressed that A. planipennis represents a high risk for urban plantations and natural forests of Fraxinus, and that delimiting surveys are needed. This is the first report of A. planipennis in the European part of Russia.
The situation of A. planipennis in Russia can be described as follows: Present, Far East and European Russia (Moscow and its surroundings).
Alexeev AV (1979) [New species of beetles (Coleoptera, Buprestidae) unknown or hardly known from the territory USSR of eastern Siberia and the Far East] 12-139. In: Krivolutskaya (Ed.): [Beetles of the Far East and eastern Siberia (new data on fauna and systematics)], Vladivostok Akademiya Nauk SSSR, 157 pp (in Russian).
Mozolevskaya EG, Izhevskii SS (2007) [Outbreaks of emerald ash borer in Moscow region.] (in Russian). Zashchita Rastenii no. 5, 28-30.
INTERNET (last retrieved in 2007-04)
- Zoological Institute, St Petersburg, Russia. Beetles (Coleoptera) and Coleopterists website
Izhevsky SS (2007) [The threatening finding of Agrilus planipennis in the region of Moscow.] (in Russian). http://www.zin.ru/Animalia/Coleoptera/rus/agrplaiz.htm
Shankhiza EV (2007) [Invasion of Agrilus planipennis in the region of Moscow.] (in Russian). http://www.zin.ru/Animalia/Coleoptera/rus/fraxxx.htm
Volkovich MG (2007) [Agrilus planipennis, a new and dangerous pest of Fraxinus in the European part of Russia.] (in Russian). http://www.zin.ru/Animalia/Coleoptera/rus/eab_2007.htm