Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Pandanus leaf webworm (389)

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  • Unknown distribution. In Oceania, Fiji. A serious pest of Pandanus.
  • Damage: larvae web tips of young leaves together and feed on the surface layers, which become silvery and withered as the leaves mature.
  • Larva with flattened yellow body, red-brown head; pupa bordered by crescent-shaped mass of chewed leaf; adults light-brown, with hindwings fringed with thick hairs.
  • Natural enemies: unknown.
  • Cultural control: cut of tips of the leaves, and destroy the larvae.
  • Chemical control: biorational pesticides: (i) botanicals (chillies, neem, derris, pyrethrum); (ii) microbials e.g., spinosad, Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies kurstaki) against young caterpillars; (iii) synthetic pyrethroids - avoid, if possible, as they are likely to destroy natural enemies, if present. Spot-spray damaged shoots rather than 'blanket' spray.
Common Name

Pandanus leaf webworm

Scientific Name

Aeolarchis sphenotoma. It was known previously as Erechthias fibrivora, and before that Decadarchis fibrivora, the name under which it was described. It is a moth of the Tineidae, fungus moths.

AUTHOR Grahame Jackson & Mani Mua
1Information from Swaine G (1971) Agricultural Zoology in Fiji. Her Majesty's Stationery Office. London.

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project HORT/2016/18: Responding to emerging pest and disease threats to horticulture in the Pacific islands, implemented by the University of Queensland and the Pacific Community.

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