Classification and host plants
Species: C. tenebrionis L.
“Phytopathology, agricultural entomology and applied biology” – M.Ferrari, E.Marcon, A.Menta; School edagricole - RCS Libri spa
Host plants: Stone fruit and Pome fruit.
Identification, damage and biological cycle
The Capnodio is a beetle that lives at the expense of the fruit trees, in particular the stone fruit; adults have a typical blackish, stocky and enlarged body, tapered in the back, up to 28 mm long. The larvae are apod, elongated, of whitish cream color, with the thorax more showy and wider than the other segments, which has a typical inverted V design and a darker color; the larvae can reach considerable lengths, even up to 6-7 cm.
Capnodio is particularly widespread in central and southern Italy, especially in the Mediterranean areas. Adults appear from May-June until the end of July; they damage the vegetation by feeding on leaves and their petioles, but above all by nibbling the rind of the young twigs. The adults lay on the rind of the host plants, above all at the base of the trunks; the larval stages produce the main damages of the Capnodio.
In fact, the larvae first dig shallow subcortical tunnels, then penetrate the wood where they dig tunnels even in the deepest layers; these tunnels can also have a vertical trend due to the movement of the larvae from the trunk to the roots and vice versa.
The most affected wood organs are the stems, especially in the basal parts, and the large roots; the affected plants seriously deteriorate and, especially the younger ones, can die.
Capnodio takes 1-2 years to complete its biological cycle (adults reappear in the 2nd or 3rd calendar year); mature larvae can be easily identified because at the end of the cycle they are brought and pupated in superficial subcortical niches.
Capnodio - Capnodis tenebrionis L. (photo Petr Zabransky www.zabra.at)
Larva diCapnodio on apricot tree branch (photo www.inra.fr)
The fight against Capnodio involves a destruction of the already infested specimens and any chemical interventions, with white oils activated with synthetic insecticides, to be carried out during the oviposition by washing the basal parts of the plants well with the insecticide suspension to prevent their larval activity.
The adults could be controlled with chemical interventions to the vegetation during their period of trophic activity against the epigean parts.