The Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture has issued an alert about a new pest of avocado that has been reported in the Islands, the avocado lace bug (Pseudacysta perseae). First discovered in Pearl City in December, it has since been seen in Waialua as well. So far, it has only been found on O‘ahu.
The lace bug causes yellow blotching, chlorosis, and “scorching” on leaves and causes the leaves to drop early. The bugs can be found on the undersides of leaves, where they lay their eggs and coat them with a shiny black layer of excrement for protection. Adults have black heads and a black horizontal line across their yellow-tan bodies.
CTAHR is working with HDOA to learn more about the spread of the insect and establish treatment options.