An Asian ambrosia beetle Euwallacea fornicatus and its novel symbiotic fungus Fusarium sp. pose a serious threat to the Israeli avocado industry


The ambrosia beetle, Euwallacea fornicatus Eichhoff, was first recorded in Israel in 2009. The symbiotic fungus Fusarium sp., carried in mycacangia located in the anterior region of the female head, is responsible for the typical wilt symptoms inflicted on avocado (Persea americana Miller) trees. The beetle–fungus complex has become a serious threat to the future of the avocado industry in Israel.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4


  1. Browne, F. G. (1961). The biology of Malayan Scolytidae and Platypodidae. Malayan Forest Records No. 22, 1–255.

  2. Danthanarayana, W. (1968). The distribution and host-range of the shot-hole borer (Xyleborus fornicatus Eichh.) of tea. Tea Quarterly, 39, 61–69.

    Google Scholar 

  3. Gadd, C. H., & Loos, C. A. (1947). The ambrosia fungus of Xyleborus fornicatus Eich. Transactions of the British Mycological Society, 31, 13–18.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  4. Hulcr, J., Mogia, M., Isua, B., & Novotny, V. (2007). Host specificity of ambrosia and bark beetles (Col., Curculionidae: Scolytinae and Platypodinae) in a New Guinea rain forest. Ecological Entomology, 32, 762–772.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. Liu, X., Sievert, J., Arpaia, M. J., & Madore, M. A. (2002). Postulated physiological roles of the seven-carbon sugars, mannoheptulose, and perseitol in avocado. Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science, 127, 108--114.

    Google Scholar 

  6. O’Donnell, K., Sutton, D. A., Fothergill, A., McCarthy, D., Rinaldi, M. G., Brandt, M. E., et al. (2008). Molecular phylogenetic diversity, multilocus haplotype nomenclature, and in vitro antifungal resistance within the Fusarium solani species complex. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 46, 2477–2490.

    PubMed  Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Rabaglia, R. J., Dole, S. A., & Cognato, A. I. (2006). Review of American Xyleborina (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae) occurring north of Mexico, with an illustrated key. Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 99, 1034–1055.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Swofford, D. L. (2002). PAUP*. Phylogenetic analysis using parsimony (and other methods). Version 4. Sunderland: Sinauer Associates.

    Google Scholar 

Download references


The authors would like to thank Prof. Randy C. Ploetz and Prof. Jorge Peña from the Univ. of Florida, Homestead, Florida, USA, and Michael Noi, Ministry of Agriculture, Israel, for helpful discussions, and the Israeli avocado growers’ organization for partial funding of this research. We also thank Stacy Sink for generating the DNA sequence data reported in this study and Nathane Orwig for running the DNA sequences in NCAUR’s DNA core facility. The mention of firm names or trade products does not imply that they are endorsed or recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture over other firms or similar products not mentioned. The USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Z. Mendel.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Mendel, Z., Protasov, A., Sharon, M. et al. An Asian ambrosia beetle Euwallacea fornicatus and its novel symbiotic fungus Fusarium sp. pose a serious threat to the Israeli avocado industry. Phytoparasitica 40, 235–238 (2012).

Download citation


  • First report
  • Fusarium solani species complex
  • Persea americana