South American Palm Weevil
The South American palm weevil is a serious palm pest in its native range in Mexico, Central and South America. It is highly likely that the insect has established permanent populations in southern San Diego County in an area that ranges, at least, from San Ysidro to Chula Vista.
This invasive weevil presents a significant new threat to date and ornamental palm producers, managers of wilderness, tourist, and recreational areas, and home owners. In addition to causing direct palm mortality, South American palm weevil vectors a plant pathogenic nematode, red ring nematode, that can also kill palms.
The invasive species signature program supported a one day meeting held in October 2016 at the Sweetwater Summit Community Building in Bonita San Diego County, about five miles from the Sweetwater Reserve, a major infestation site.
One of the goals of this meeting was to inform as many stakeholders as possible about this new pest and what can likely be expected within the next few years as it continues to spread. The one day meeting was very well attended, with approximately 125 people registered and participated in the meeting and the post-meeting field trip in the afternoon to observe infested palms in the nearby Sweetwater Reserve.