Huanglongbing (HLB)

Pest: Huanglongbing (HLB) (Candidatus Liberibacter asiaticus)

Pest Type: Infectious disease, bacterium

Major Identifying Features: Young citrus leaves infested with Asian citrus psyllid nymphs may begin to curl and twist, HLB causes asymmetrical yellow mottling of leaves and odd shape and greening of the fruit

Life Cycle: Bacterium spreads via its host the Asian citrus psyllid. The adult psyllid is the size of an aphid with red eyes, a brownish-winged body, and short antennae, they live 1-2 months, females lay up to 100 tiny yellow-orange eggs on developing leaves, nymphs molt 4 times before maturing, nymphs remove sap from plant tissue and excrete honeydew

Pest Rating: Invasive

Management Rating: Very difficult

Host/Season/Outbreak Information: The Asian citrus psyllid Diaphorina citri (ACP) is a small brown insect that feeds on citrus throughout California and is the host of huanglongbing disease. The psyllid takes the bacteria into its body when it feeds on bacteria-infected plants and spreads it to healthy plants

Damage Information: Psyllid nymphs damage leaves on citrus trees, produce honeydew which encourages the growth of sooty mold. HLB disease can kill a citrus tree in as little as five years, and there is no cure.

Management Options: Prevention of the spread of the HLB pathogen by monitoring psyllid population with yellow sticky traps, cultural control of psyllid and ant populations, biological control with parasitic wasps (Tamarixia radiata), lady beetles, syrphid fly larvae, lacewing larvae, and minute pirate bugs, mechanical control by removing and destroying any infected trees, chemical control with insecticides (WARNING ON THE USE OF CHEMICALS)

Sources:

http://www.ipm.ucanr.edu

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