Pineapple mealybug, seasonal distribution, Huimanguillo.
Objective: To identify the pineapple mealybug Dysmicoccus spp. and determine its prevalence and seasonal distribution in Huimanguillo Tabasco, Mexico.
Design/Methodology/Approach: This study was carried out in two pineapple producing localities in the municipality of Huimanguillo, Tabasco. The varieties studied were MD2 and Cabezona. The seasonal distribution and infestation percentage was determined in both localities and for both varieties from January to June 2021. Forty plants were randomly sampled per month in a 4-ha area per locality. Roots, stems, basal leaves, and fruits were examined at the plant level.
Results: The highest abundance of pineapple mealybugs (D. brevipes sp.) was found in the Cabezona variety. D. brevipes is mainly located in 85.46 and 61.76% of the old leaves of the stem, in the Cabezona and MD2 varieties, respectively. From January to April —when the highest temperatures were recorded—, the population of D. brevipes was moderate, while the highest populations were recorded towards mid-June, when the rains began.
Study Limitations/Implications: Climatic variables can affect the evaluation parameters. The immature stages dynamics can limit the interpretation of results.
Conclusions: D. brevipes is mostly distributed in the lower parts of the plant. To determine the population fluctuation, predict the total number of insects per plant, and establish their temporal and spatial distribution, the entire production cycle must be considered, as well as the climatic parameters, in order to develop a targeted control strategy on dates of moderate abundance.