Scars Beetle – Guyana Chronicle

BANANA (Musa spp.), One of the most important fruit crops, is grown mainly in the tropical and subtropical regions. Plantain, which belongs to the same Banana family, is of great economic importance and is an iron-rich food source in Guyana. In recent years banana plantations in some parts of tropical America have suffered severely from attacks by the Banana Scars Beetle, Colaspis hyperchlora, Lefevre (1878). This species has been found in Colombia (type locality), British Guiana, Panama, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, British Honduras and Mexico. More than 200 species of insect and non-insect pests attack Bananas (Simmonds, 1966 and Singh, 1970). In Guyana, the area affected by this beetle has so far been estimated at around 12.14 hectares.

Pest Biology
Adults can produce between four and 40 eggs in batches. These are laid in the soil close to the roots of the plants, which have an incubation period of six to nine days.
The larvae remain in the soil feeding on plant roots and decaying materials. The larvae take about 20—22 days to develop. After that the pupa develops in the soil and takes about seven to 10 days. The immature stages survive best in humid conditions and thus, the pest population struggles best in rainy seasons.
The adults can survive between nine and 12 days and can be found hidden in shaded areas of the plants. This nocturnal beetle, which exhibits characteristics on its own, feeds on fruit that causes irreversible damage in the form of scars, making them illegible. Experts have revealed that beetle damage not only affects the exocarp (skin), has shown that the damage affects the quality of the mesocarp.

Nature of Harm
The beetles feed on young leaves and young fruit skin, making scars and spots on the deformed skin, and creating scars that are presented in the shape of an oval and the fruit, making them are not marketable.
Sometimes this insect lives in the center of the pseudo-system within the roll of the central leaf. The beetles are mainly found during the rainy season. The adult beetle feeds on various weeds as well as on young, uncoated banana leaves, stems and roots. The larvae feed on the young roots and the tunnel on the older roots to eat the tissues.

Continuous monitoring is required to understand the status of the pest. In doing so, care must be taken as damage caused by this beetle can easily be confused with that caused by the scaly bee Melipona (Trigona) Amalthea.

Cultural Management Methods
Cultural management approaches, such as good drainage and clean cultivation and litter removal, promote immature exposure to immersion. The removal of flowers after the fruit has been formed and alternative host plants are strongly recommended

Chemical Control
In line with the findings of DGSV-CNRF (2016) and that available in Guyana, chemical control should primarily include enclosing the crew inside an insecticide-treated bag. This practice, once widespread, is still recommended in South America. Must be bagged before the flower begins to open. Otherwise, insecticides like Carbaryl at 0.1% ai
Pic was saved as NAREI