Accurate insect pest identification is a prerequisite in the
implementation of quarantine measures to prevent the spread of the
dreaded Brontispa into unaffected coconut farms. Likewise, it is
essential in the application of insect pest control methods to eradicate
Just like the popular saying “an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure,” proper identification of insect pest always precedes the application of insect pest control methods. This is so because there is nothing to control when nothing is detected. The same rule applies to preventive measures.
However, just because nothing is reported does not always mean that
the beetle is not there. Many possibilities could be responsible for the
continued invasion of coconut farms in the Philippines.
It is likely that many of us are still not totally aware of the
impending danger of a possible Brontispa epidemic. It also appears that
even if the beetle is already there, they are not detected simply
because the people who always come close to the affected plants are
unable to identify the insect pest and their damage symptoms.
Description of Brontispa
Brontispa (Brontispa longessima Gestro), also called coconut leaf beetle (CLB) and coconut hispine beetle, is a small, flat and slender beetle, with body width about 20 percent of its length. The adult has a distinctive black and reddish color, the latter towards the head. Its larva and adult are most destructive to the coconut tree.
They are not easily seen because they stay and breed within the folds of unopened leaflets of young coconut spears.
And be careful of this tiny beetle,they may stick to the clothing when inspecting an infested palm, and possibly carried elsewhere.
Read more: Practical method of insect pest control as applied in mango production. Click here.