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Updating data on the sycamore seed bug Belonochilus numenius (Say, 1832) (Hemiptera: Lygaeidae) in Spain

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2015
Authors:J. M. Riba, Marti, I., Goula, M.
Journal:Butlletí de la Institució Catalana d’Història Natural
Keywords:alien species, Catalonia, Iberian Peninsula, sycamore seed bug, true bugs, trunk injection, urban entomology, urban parks and green areas, urban pest

Belonochilus numenius is a Nearctic seed bug living on different species of Platanus (Platanaceae). It was first found in Europe in 2008 and since then it has spread rapidly across the continent. It is likely that this rapid expansion has been favored by the widespread presence of its Platanus spp. host plants, which is used everywhere as an ornamental tree. In July 2015, B. numenius became an urban pest for the first time, becoming a public nuisance in Barcelona city (Spain), and thus forcing the Municipal Technical Services to undertake treatment. Because of these facts, we wanted to update available information about B. numenius in Spain and to summarise control actions carried out in some urban areas affected in Catalonia. Information sources consulted include published references, observations by the authors or by others graciously communicated to the authors, and the review of photos available through the Biodiversidad Virtual sharing website. All this information was collated from 2008 to the present, resulting in over a hundred Catalan municipalities where the species has been detected. Information is also provided on management treatments including effective alpha-cypermethrin treatments and selective pruning experiments. Trunk injection treatments with abamectin were very effective against the sycamore lace bug (Corythucha ciliata), but they were not effective against B. numenius.

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