First report of two new eucalyptus pests in the South of France: Ophelimus maskelli and Leptocybe invasa
In December 2005, the presence of Ophelimus maskelli and Leptocybe invasa (both Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) was confirmed in France, in samples of eucalyptus showing leaf galls. Samples had been collected from the communes of Fréjus and Sainte-Maxime, in Var department (region Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur). It has been observed that O. maskelli could cause numerous galls on eucalyptus in areas where it occurs. Galls caused by L. invasa had already been observed in 2004 in Corsica and in 2005 in Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur, but at that time the identification of the pest could not be confirmed because no adults could be obtained. It is noted that since 2000, both eucalyptus pests are actively spreading in the Near-East, as well as in Mediterranean and African countries, causing serious damage to young plantations and nurseries.
NPPO of France, 2006-05.