skip to Main Content
Safj Sa Fruit Journal Cri Extension Briefs Dec 2023 Featured
December 2023 / January 2024

Extension briefs for December and January 2024

SA Fruit Journal: December 2023 / January 2024

By Hannes Bester, MC Pretorius, Wayne Mommsen, Coenraad Fraenkel, André Combrink, Natasha Jackson
and Jan Landman (CRI)

Integrated pest management

False codling moth (S.D. Moore)

It is utterly imperative that the False Codling Moth Management System (FMS) for citrus, including the False Codling Moth (FCM) Systems Approach, be implemented diligently and thoroughly. Neither growers nor the industry can afford a lapse in the implementation of comprehensive and effective management practices. The details of all of these practices are described in the FMS, with reference to CRI's IPM Guidelines for FCM Management (available on the CRI website). These Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) must be followed as described.

One of the most important practices is orchard sanitation, which must be conducted at least weekly in all orchards, also for lemons. This involves not only collecting and destroying fallen fruit, but also removing all hanging fruit that appear damaged or infested in any way. It has been shown that such a practice can effectively remove an average of up to 75% of FCM larvae from an orchard. In the hotter summer months orchard sanitation should be increased to at least twice a week, in order to have the same effect. Fruit must not be mulched inside the orchard.

Although lemons at the commercially ripe stage for export are not a host to FCM, very small and over-ripe lemons can host FCM, which can result in lemon orchards being a source of FCM for adjacent and nearby orchards of FCM-susceptible cultivars. This makes sanitation in lemon orchards as important as in orchards of other citrus types.

The use of an area-wide control technique, such as the sterile insect technique (SIT) or mating disruption, from early in the season, will also provide effective suppression of the FCM population while it is still low. Initiating control measures only a few weeks or months before harvest is unlikely to be sufficiently effective.

Finally, monitoring of fruit infestation, as described in the FMS is extremely important to ascertain FCM risk. Monitors must be trained and proven competent for this very important task. Colour plates are available from CRI, to assist with correct identification of FCM larvae and other insects that can internally infest citrus fruit. If there is any doubt as to whether a larva is FCM or not, it must be recorded as FCM, due to its phytosanitary status and the potential consequences of underestimating levels of incidence.

Read More
Back To Top