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Earias insulana Boisduval, E. fabia Stoll, E.  cupreoviridis Walker, E. huegeli

Rogenhofer, etc. -- Family: Arctiidae




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The genus Earias, spiny or spotted bollworms, is a group of Palearctic, Ethiopian, Asiatic and Australasian pests that can cause extensive damage to cotton, Gossypium hirsutum.  The origin of this group covers a greater geographical range than Pectinophora gossypiella, but some species in both genera are coincident in cotton producing areas outside of the Western Hemisphere.  However, developmental stages of Earias are relatively more exposed on the plant than with Pectinophora, making them more vulnerable to attack by predators and nonspecialized parasitoids.  Thus far Earias is absent from the Nearctic and Neotropical regions. 


Species studied include Earias bipalaga Walker, E. chlorana (L.), E. cupreoviridis Walker, E. fabia Stoll, E. huegeli Rogenhofer,  E. insulana Boisduval, E. vernana (Hübner), & E. vittella Fab.


Parasites & Predators


Parasitism of spiny bollworms is heavy in northwestern Australia and at times in India.  Because of interference with insecticidal sprays in commercial cotton, it is not absolutely possible to determine if natural enemies would reduce abundance of these pests to economically acceptable levels.  However, Stam & Elmosa (1990) in Syria showed that predator numbers were significantly reduced with insecticide applications followed by significant increases in bollworm populations.  They also reported that parasitoids were not important for the control of lepidopterous pests in cotton.  The high activity of parasitoids in northwestern Australia (Legner & Altmann, unpub. data) suggests that classical biological control attempts be made.


Maximum parasitism in India reported by Sekhon & Varma (1983) were as follows:  egg attacking parasitoids:  Trichogramma achaeae Nagaraja & Nagarkatti (61%), Trichogramma chilonis Ichii (15%), Trichogrammatoidea sp. nr. guamensis Nagaraja (MS) 42%, larval parasitoids, Bracon greeni Ashmead <5%, Rogas sp. 13%, Elasmus johnstoni Ferrière 0.43%, and pupal parasitoid Brachymeria nephantidis Gahan 57%.  Other parasitoids reported from India include egg-attacking Chelonus heliopae Patel, larva-attacking Rogas kampurensis Mani, and Strobliomyia nana (Curr.), Actia aegyptia Vill., Bracon brevicornis Wesmael, Centrochalcis sp., Chelonus rufus Lyle, Rogas testaceus Spinola, Phanerotoma hendecasisella Cameron, and pupa-attacking Goryphus nursei (Cameron), Brachymeria tachardiae Cameron, Brachymeria responsator Walk and Brachymeria sp..  In Pakistan, the pupal parasitoid Brachymeria bicolorata Khokhar et al. and the larval parasitoids Elasmus orientalis Khokhar et al. and E. dorsalis Khokhar et al. are known.  In Uganda the parasitoids Apanteles diparopsidis Lyle, Agathis aciculata (Brues), Rogas sp., Netelia sp. and Trichogramma sp. have been reared on Earias.  In Taiwan Brachymeria obscurata (Walker) was reared from Earias pupae.  In Syria Bracon brevicornis Wesm. is highly active, while in Iran Bracon lefroyi (D. & G.) is most active.


Kashyap & Verma (1987) summarized the following parasitoids, predators and pathogens attacking Earias spp. naturally throughout their distribution range:


Egg Parasitoids:  Erythemelus sp., Gonatocerus sp., Trichogramma achaeae, T. brasiliensis Ashmead, T. chilonis Ishii, T. evenescens Westwood, Trichogramma sp., Trichogrammatoidae bactgrae Nagaraja, Trichogrammatoidae sp. nr. guamensis Nagaraja and Trichogrammatoidae sp., Trichogrammatoidea lutea Gir.


Egg-larval Parasitoids:  Chelonus blackburni Cameron, C. heliopae (Gupta).


Larval Parasitoids:  Actia aegyptie Vill., A. hyalinata Mall., Actia sp., Agathus aciculatus (Brues), Agathus sp., Apanteles spp., Bracon (Microbracon) brevicornis (Wesmael), B. greeni (Ashm.) (lefroyi) (Dudgeon & Geough), B. hebetor (Say), Bracon sp., Bassus spp., Brachymeria tenuicornis (Kieff), Chelonus blackburni Cameron, Chelonus sp., Elasmus johnstoni Ferriere, Elasmus sp., Exorista spp., Microbracon gelechidiphagus, Prolodaspis spp., Rhogas aligarhensis Quadri, R. lefroy Ashm., R. testaceous Grav., Rhogas sp. nr. pallidater (Thnd.), Rhogas sp.,


Larval-pupal Parasitoids:  Chrysis obliterata Moesary, Coryphnus sp.


Pupal Parasitoids:  Brachymeria apantelesi, B. lasus, B. responsonator (Walker), B. nephanttidis Gah., B. tachaididae (Cameron), Brachymeria (Chalsis) spp., Chelonus rofus Lyle, Chelonus spp., Centrochalcis spp., Chrysis habrobracon, Goryphus (Melcha) nursei (Cameron), and Goryphus sp.


Predators:  Brumoides suturalis (F.), Geocoris sp., Cartheconidea furcellata (Woeff), Eumenes petiolata, Menochilus sexmaculatus and Phanerotoma hendecasisella.


Fungi:  Fusarium moniliformae var. subglutinams, Serratia marcescens and Bacillus cereus.




REFERENCES:          [ Additional references may be found at:   MELVYL Library ]


Anonymous.  1960.  Cotton growing countries of the world, the Syrian region of the United Arab Republic.  Liverpool Raw Cotton Annual.  p. 71-167.


Anonymous.  1981.  Half monthly report No. 704, for the 2nd half of July 1981.  Cotton Bureau, Aleppo Min. Agr. Agrar. Ref. S.A.R.  12 p.


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Abdel-Fattah, S. A. S., I. M. F. Sharaf, A. El-Sebae, & A. El-Sebae.  1983.  Performance of flucythrinate (Cybolt) against a wide spectrum of agricultural pests in Egypt.  Arab. J. Plant Prot. 1: 74-8.


Abdel-Rahim, W. A., S. M. I. Metwally & F. El-Dakrousy.  1980.  Effect of certain physical and chemical characteristics of cotton varieties on susceptibility to infestation by pink and spiny bollworm.  Plant Prot. Dept., Tanta Univ., Kaft-el-Sheikh, Egypt.  p. 727-31.  (RAE, A:  69:  5118).


Abid, M. K., A. Ghobrial, P. Sl Elhaideri & S. A. Abbs.  1978.  Dimilin (TH-6040):  Effects on the spiny bollworm, Earias insulana Boisd. (Lepid: Phalaenidae).  Z. angew. Ent. 85:  321-4.


Abul-Nasr, S. & M. M. Megahed.  1971.  Infestation of the cotton plant by the spiny bollworm, Earias insulana (Boisd.) (Lepidoptera: Arctiidae).  Bull. Soc. Ent. Egypte 55:  339-54.


Abul-Nasr, S., M. M. Megahed & A. A. M. Mabrouk.  1972.  A study on three host plants of the spiny bollworm, Earias insulana (Boisd.), other than cotton and maize.  Bull. Soc. Ent. Egypte 56:  151-61.


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Jutsum, A. R., G. J. Marrs, R. F. S. Gordon, d. G. Campion, B. R. Critchley, L. J. McVeigh, A. Cork, D. R. Hall, B. F. Nesbitt, M. M. Hosny & E. A. Nasr.  1983.  Control of crop pests with microencapsulated insect pheromones.  Proc. 10th Internatl. Cong. Plant Prot., Brighton, Eng., 20-25 Nov, 1983. 1:  266-7.


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Katiyar, K. N.  1982.  Relationship between time of flowering and bollworm infestation in cotton.  Indian J. Ent. 44:  373-92.


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