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Patterns of Mitochondrial Haplotype Diversity in the Invasive Pest Epiphyas postvittana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae)

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The light brown apple moth, Epiphyas postvittana (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), is a horticultural pest of Australia and New Zealand that has more recently invaded Hawaii, Europe, and California. A 2,216-bp region of the mitochondrial genome containing the cytochrome oxidase I and II genes was sequenced from 752 individuals. Haplotype network analyses revealed a major split between a predominantly Western Australian clade and all other samples, suggestive of either a deep genetic divergence or a cryptic species. Nucleotide and haplotype diversity were highest in the country of origin, Australia, and in New Zealand populations, with evidence of haplotype sharing between New Zealand and Tasmania. Nucleotide and haplotype diversity were higher in California than within the British Isles or Hawaii. From the total of 96 haplotypes, seven were found in California, of which four were private. Within California, there have been at least two introductions; based on genetic diversity we were unable to assign a likely source for a single moth found and eradicated in Los Angeles in 2007; however, our data suggest it is unlikely that Hawaii and the British Isles are sources of the major E. postvittana population found throughout the rest of the state since 2006.

Keywords: Epiphyas postvittana; haplotype; invasive species; mitochondrial population genetics; origin

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1603/EC10342

Publication date: June 1, 2011

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  • Journal of Economic Entomology is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December. The journal publishes articles on the economic significance of insects and is divided into the following sections: apiculture & social insects; arthropods in relation to plant disease; forum; insecticide resistance and resistance management; ecotoxicology; biological and microbial control; ecology and behavior; sampling and biostatistics; household and structural insects; medical entomology; molecular entomology; veterinary entomology; forest entomology; horticultural entomology; field and forage crops, and small grains; stored-product; commodity treatment and quarantine entomology; and plant resistance. In addition to research papers, Journal of Economic Entomology publishes Letters to the Editor, interpretive articles in a Forum section, Short Communications, Rapid Communications, and Book Reviews.
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