Karl Fritze S. Sampiano and Larry V. Aceres


Abstract— Agriculture is among the most crucial sector in almost all countries around the world. It provides both income and employment opportunities among people ensuring food security and sustainability. However, an insect pest called spiralling whitefly, Aleurodicus dispersus Russell (Hemiptera:Aleyrodidae) threatens the agricultural industry. This pest is native to Caribbean Region and Central America and was first reported and described in Florida in 1965. From there on, it logistically spreads and invades many countries around the world. The spiralling whitefly is an intensively polyphagous pest with a wide range of host plants. It affects the plants by directly feeding on leaves competing with nutrients to the host. Indirect effects were also observed, such as producing honeydew and waxy substances that affect the host plants’ overall physiological ability. Management strategies against the pest include releasing insect predators and parasitoids, removing infested leaves, installing light and sticky traps, selecting possible resistant crop varieties, using naturally occurring insecticides, and some synthetic control tactics. However, in the Philippines, very few studies have been conducted concerning the biology, ecology, and management of this polyphagous pest. Considering that the country is looking for a sustainable, healthier, and environmentally friendly pest management approach, research efforts should therefore give considerable attention to mitigate and prevent the possible impacts of this polyphagous insect pest in the future of the Philippine agricultural sector.

Keywords - Invasive pest, pest management, Philippines, polyphagous pest, spiralling whitefly


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