Worldwide distribution and phylogeography of the agave weevil Scyphophorus acupunctatus (Coleoptera, Dryophthoridae): the rise of an overlooked invasion
Viviano A, Cocco A, Colangelo P, Delitala GM, Pantaleoni RA, Loru L (2024) Worldwide distribution and phylogeography of the agave weevil Scyphophorus acupunctatus (Coleoptera, Dryophthoridae): the rise of an overlooked invasion. NeoBiota 90: 53–78. https://doi.org/10.3897/neobiota.90.101797
Global plant trade represents one of the main pathways of introduction for invertebrates, including insects, throughout the world. Non-native insects include some of the most important pests affecting cultivated and ornamental plants worldwide. Defining the origins and updating the distribution of nonnative invasive species is pivotal to develop effective strategies to limit their spread. The agave weevil, Scyphophorus acupunctatus (Coleoptera, Dryophthoridae), is a curculionid beetle native to Central and North America, although it also occurs in Eurasia, Africa, Oceania and South America as a non-native species. Despite being widespread, the extent of occurrence and origins of European populations of the agave weevil have been overlooked. In the present study, the current and potential worldwide distribution of S. acupunctatus was assessed and an analysis of its genetic diversity in the native and non-native ranges was performed. By analysing occurrences from local phytosanitary bulletins and citizen-science platforms, the agave weevil was confirmed to be widely distributed and to occur on all continents, except Antarctica. Additionally, there is potential for expansion throughout the world, as estimated by species distribution models.
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