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Abstract

The HMB was first reported in Trinidad in 1995. Following short term control strategies a classical biological control programme was initiated in 1996 as a long term sustainable control strategy. The exotic natural enemies released were Cryptolaemus montrouzieri (Cm), Scymnus coccivora (Sc) and Anagyrus kamali (Ak). Since 1996, six islandwide surveys were conducted to determine spatial distribution of HMB and the exotic natural enemies to assess the impact of the natural enemies, and to quantify plant damage. The methodology was developed by the FAO under the Technical Cooperation Project (TCP). The data from these surveys were compared to determine the impact of the natural enemies on HMB. Generally few Ak and Sc were recovered. Flowever, Cm appears to be established in the environment. The FIMB population after releases was also low for all counties. Hibiscus spp. continue to be the most susceptable host plants. Although crinkling and curling symptoms appeared in surveyed plants, damage was not critical. Data from these surveys also served to provide supportive information on the status of the HMB population and facilitated the resumption of regional trade.

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