Xylella fastidiosa detected in mainland Spain and update for Baleares
Xylella fastidiosa (EPPO A1 List) has been detected for the first time from mainland Spain. The presence of the bacterium was confirmed in June 2017 in one plot of almond trees in El Castell de Guadalest, near Alicante (Comunidad Valenciana). This plot of 0.47 ha was comprised of almond trees (Prunus dulcis cvs. Marcona and Guara) that were more than 30 years old. The grower had alerted the official services because he had noticed a reduction in almond production. A first analysis (RT-PCR) carried out in December 2016 on an asymptomatic sample had given negative results. Another asymptomatic sample was collected in May 2017 and gave positive results by RT-PCR (but negative by cPCR). This plot was inspected and symptoms resembling those of X. fastidiosa were observed on leaves. The identity of the bacterium was then confirmed by other serological and molecular tests. It noted that this almond plot is located in a region where the main crops are fruit trees: 2 800 ha of loquat (Eriobotrya japonica), 1 700 ha of olive (Olea europaea), 920 ha of citrus, and 393 ha of almond. In this area, insect vectors of X. fastidiosa have been monitored by using yellow traps with more than 1 160 trapping points. All tests carried out on caught specimens gave negative results for X. fastidiosa. The origin of this outbreak is unknown. Eradication measures (in accordance with EU Implementing Decision 2015/789) were implemented with a demarcated area of 10 km radius around the infected plot and the application of insecticide treatments against vectors of X. fastidiosa. It was also prohibited to move plants out of the 7 nurseries and garden centres which are located within this demarcated area.
In Islas Baleares, the NPPO declared in 2017-07-10 that X. fastidiosa has been detected in a total of 281 plants (172 in Mallorca, 73 in Ibiza, 36 in Menorca). In Mallorca, X. fastidiosa has been detected for the first time in 2 symptomatic Ficus carica in the municipalities of Sant Llorenç des Cardassar and Santa Eugenia. Both trees were growing in agricultural areas where weeds were also present.
The pest status of Xylella fastidiosa in Spain is officially declared as: Present, under eradication.
NPPO of Spain (2017-06).