First report of Hercinothrips dimidiatus in Portugal
The NPPO of Portugal recently informed the EPPO Secretariat of the first report of Hercinothrips dimidiatus (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) on its territory. In October 2014, high levels of infestation were found on plants of Aloe arborescens (Xanthorrhoeaceae) in the municipalities of Lisbon, Oeiras and Cascais. These plants were grown in gardens (public and private) and along the roads. H. dimidiatus was found during research studies on thrips conducted by the National Plant Health Laboratory (INIAV, Ep). The insect was identified by INIAV on the basis of its morphological characteristics and this identification was confirmed by a taxonomist. Studies are being conducted by INIAV in order to better understand the bioecology of H. dimidiatus and determine the most appropriate control measures. Very little information is available in the literature on this thrips species. H. dimidiatus is only known to occur in South Africa where it has been found in Liliaceae (without any further details) and no information is provided on the damage it may cause.
The pest status of Hercinothrips dimidiatus in Portugal is officially declared as: Present, restricted distribution.
NPPO of Portugal (2014-11).