EPPO Global Database

EPPO Reporting Service no. 11 - 2008 Num. article: 2008/223

New insect pests introduced into Europe

Drs J-F Germain (FR), I Sánchez and N Pérez (ES) recently attracted the attention of the EPPO Secretariat to the introduction into Europe of the following new insect pests.

  • Drepanaphis acerifoliae (Homoptera: Aphididae)
In Spain, populations of Drepanaphis acerifoliae (painted maple aphid) were located for the first time on Acer saccharinum trees in the provinces of Lleida (Cataluña) and León (Castilla y León) in June 2006 and August 2007, respectively. D. acerifoliae originates from North America (Canada, USA). In Europe, it was reported for the first time in the 1990s in northern Italy (Milan and Como, Lombardia). It is noted that A. saccharinum is increasingly being used as an ornamental tree in urban landscapes. D. acerifoliae produces large quantities of honeydew which may be a nuisance in urban environments.

  • Neotoxoptera violae (Homoptera: Aphididae)
In 2007, during breeding experiments carried out in the south-west of France, unusual aphids were observed damaging mother plants of Viola odorata, a violet species used for its delicate fragrance. The aphid was identified as Neotoxoptera violae. The presence of this aphid had been suspected in France during the last decade but is confirmed for the first time in France. Although its distribution in France remains to be further studied, N. violae was observed in Aquitaine and Midi-Pyrénées in 2007. On violets, N. violae causes leaf deformations and its honeydew favours the development of sooty moulds. N. violae probably originates from North America and also occurs in South America, Oceania (Australia, New Zealand), and Asia (China, Korea, Taiwan). In Europe, its presence has been reported in Spain (province of Castellón, Comunidad Valenciana) and Italy (Sicilia).

  • Platycorypha nigrivirga (Homoptera: Psyllidae)
In spring 2007, the presence of an unknown psyllid (together with aphids, Aphis craccivora) was observed on trees of Tipuana tipu (Fabaceae) planted along an avenue in Jerez de la Frontera (province of Cádiz,), Spain. T. tipu is an ornamental tree originating from South America which has increasingly been planted during the last 30 years in Spain, particularly along the Mediterranean coast. In 2008, significant populations of psyllids were observed in other streets and parks of the city, damaging leaves and shoots of T. tipu and producing large amounts of honeydew. The pest was identified as Platycorypha nigrivirga. In addition to Jerez de la Frontera, P. nigrivirga was observed on T. tipu in other cities of Andalucía, in Sevilla and Benalmádena. So far, P. nigrivirga was only reported from South America (recorded in Argentina, Bolivia, and Uruguay, and since 2000 in Brazil). Although it was detected for the first time on the island of Mallorca (Baleares, Spain) in 2004, the recent records in Andalucía are the first from continental Europe.


Germain J-F, Deogratias J-M (2008) Confirmation de la présence en France du puceron de la violette. PHM-Revue Horticole, n° 507, 42-44.
Pérez Hidalgo N, Pons X, Meir Durante MP (2008) Detection of Drepanaphis acerifoliae (Thomas) [Hemiptera: Aphididae: Drepanosiphinae] on sugar maple trees, Acer saccharinum, in Spain. Boletín Sociedad Entomológica Aragonesa, no. 43, 441-444.
Sánchez I (2008) Primera cita de Platycorypha nigrivirga Burckhardt, 1987 (Hemiptera: Psyllidae) para Europa continental. Boletín Sociedad Entomológica Aragonesa, no. 43, 445-446.