n African Entomology - Molecular discrimination between the spider mite Baker & Pritchard, an important pest of tomatoes in southern Africa, and the closely related species Koch (Acarina : Tetranychidae) : short communication

Volume 11, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1021-3589



During the last two decades, tomato farmers in southern Africa have been facing increasing problems with spider mites (Acari: Tetranychidae). In Zimbabwe and Zambia, these mites are commonly referred to as 'red spider mites' and identified as Koch, (Boisduval) or sp. (Jensen & Mingochi 1988; PPRI 1988). Recent work has shown that Baker & Pritchard is responsible for the spider mite outbreaks on tomato in these countries (Knapp & Luchen 2000). is a pest of crops of the family Solanaceae (tomatoes, potatoes, tobacco and others; Bolland 1998) and probably originates from South America. It was recorded for the first time in Africa from tobacco in Zimbabwe in 1979 (Blair 1983). is now widespread in southern Africa (Meyer 1996) and also occurs in Kenya (Knapp 2002), Congo (Bonato 1999), Morocco (El Jaouani 1988) and Tunisia (Bolland 1998).

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