Date of this Version
Abrego L J, Rivera JA, Vargas H C, Garrido A, Gutiérrez L J, Osorio-Arenas MA, Arauz L PA, Jaén LA, Collantes G R, Santos-Murgas A. 2023. First record of Paratelenomus saccharalis (Dodd, 1914) (Hymenoptera: Scelionidae) a natural enemy of the invasive species Brachyplatys subaeneus (Westwood, 1837) (Heteroptera: Plataspidae) in Panama and the Neotropical region. Insecta Mundi 1010: 1–7.
Paratelenomus saccharalis (Dodd) (Hymenoptera: Scelionidae) parasitizing Brachyplatys subaeneus (Westwood) eggs is reported for the first time for Panama. Brachyplatys subaeneus is an invasive species from Asia and is regarded as an important agricultural pest in the Americas.
The family Plataspidae (Hemiptera: Heteroptera) contains 66 genera and 606 species described (Rider et al. 2018), all distributed in the Old World, with the greatest diversity in Asia and Africa. Within this family, the genus Brachyplatys Boisduval, 1835 (Heteroptera: Plataspidae) has an Asian distribution with about 50 described species. The species Brachyplatys subaeneus (Westwood, 1837) is distributed in the Indo-Malay biogeographic region, being reported from Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, the Philippines, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Taiwan, and Vietnam, and is apparently restricted to tropical and subtropical humid deciduous forests (Rédei 2016). Brachyplatys subaeneus has been reported in the Americas from Panama (Aiello et al. 2016), the Dominican Republic (Pérez-Gelabert et al. 2019), Costa Rica (Carmona-Ríos 2019), Ecuador (Añino et al. 2020), and the United States (Eger et al. 2020). In Panama, B. subaeneus was initially identified using molecular methods by Aiello et al. (2016) as Brachyplatys vahlii (Fabricius, 1787). However, Rédei (2016) correctly identified the species morphologically as B. subaeneus. This invasive species is a pest in various legume crops (Fabaceae), including Cajanus cajan (L.) Huth. (Fabaceae), and because it lacks natural enemies in Latin America, could multiply exponentially, affecting legumes on a wide scale (Eger et al. 2020). More research is needed on this crop (Gálvez et al. 2022). A recent survey of pests in Cajanus cajan discovered an egg parasitoid of B. subaeneus. Johnson (1996) reported known hosts for an egg parasitoid, Paratelenomus saccharalis (Dodd, 1914) (Hymenoptera: Scelionidae), which includes Brachyplatys subaeneus and Megacopta cribraria (Fabricius, 1798) (Heteroptera: Plataspidae). The objective of this paper is to report on an egg parasitoid of Brachyplatys subaeneus in Panama, and to recommend it as a potential biological control agent for this species.