First report of Erwinia amylovora in Spain
Symptoms of fireblight were observed for the first time in Northern Spain in August 1995, and the presence of the bacterium, Erwinia amylovora (EPPO A2 quarantine pest), was confirmed in October 1995. This focus was found in a new plantation of cider apple trees of 1.2 ha, located in Lezo (Guipúzcoa - Comunidad Autónoma del País Basco) at 8 km from the French border. Eradication measures were applied and the whole plantation was burnt (i.e. 925 trees). A monitoring programme on fireblight was set up in Spain in 1994, and includes a network of 2500 points which are normally inspected from April to November. All plants showing suspicious symptoms are submitted to laboratory tests. As a result of this outbreak, an additional monitoring programme was carried out in order to verify the effectiveness of eradication measures. Therefore, surveys were carried out in autumn/winter in nurseries situated in the Province of Guipúzcoa. 979 plants (asymptomatic material from 10 nurseries) have been tested by different laboratories (in Spain and France), and E. amylovora was not detected. In addition, an extensive programme of information to the growers has been made in the country, and especially in the Comunidad Autónoma del País Basco.
During 1996, the Plant Protection will continue to apply the following measures:
1) reinforcement of the network created in 1994, especially in the area where E. amylovora had been found; 2) surveys of nurseries and establishments commercializing host plants of E. amylovora; 3) surveys of host plants in forests; 4) information campaigns; 5) tests of all suspect samples and of some asymptomatic samples.
Plant Protection Service of Spain, 1995-06.
De la Cruz Blanco, J. (1996) Incidencias climáticas y fitosanitarias en los cultivos españoles durante 1995 - Frutales.
Phytoma-España, no. 78, 22-27.