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Giant rhinoceros beetle Golofa claviger (Linnaeus) (Coleoptera: Melolonthidae: Dynastini) is damaging North Brazilian oil palm plantations

Valois, Marcely, Tinôco, Ricardo, Chia, Gilson, Vaz-de-Mello, Fernando, Grossi, Paschoal, Silva, Fernando
Revista Brasileira de entomologia 2019 v.63 no.1 pp. 6-8
Curculionidae, Elaeis guineensis, Scarabaeidae, feeding behavior, fronds, insects, mouthparts, pests, plant tissues, plantations, ripping, Brazil
The oil palm is an economically important crop cultivated in the North of Brazil. Damage caused by insects is one of the main causes of reduced productivity for the oil palm. Before this research, only the beetles of the family Curculionidae were considered to be oil palm pests in Brazil. However, for the first time, we report on the damage caused by a giant rhinoceros beetle to oil palm plantations in Pará, Brazil. The beetle was identified as Golofa claviger (Linnaeus, 1771), which has a single record in Brazil (Pará) but is widely distributed in South America. The species occurs in an unprecedentedly high abundance of local specimens. The attacks are concentrated on the central cluster of young palms. Feeding behavior is identified as the main cause of the damage as the beetles use their mouthparts to rip the plant tissues, causing wedge-shaped cuts on young fronds that have not yet unfurled. After an attack, the leaflets of the unfurled fronds are partially destroyed.