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Predicting the Potential Global Distribution of Scirtothrips dorsalis (Hood) (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) with Emphasis on the Americas Using an Ecological Niche Model

Neotrop Entomol. 2023 Mar 8. doi: 10.1007/s13744-023-01038-0. Online ahead of print.


Scirtothrips dorsalis Hood (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) is an invasive pest that is popularly known as chilli thrips. This insect pest has a wide range of hosts distributed across 72 plant families, causing damage to numerous crops of great economic importance. In the Americas, it is present in the USA, Mexico, Suriname, Venezuela, Colombia, and some Caribbean Islands. Knowing the regions which have environmentally suitable conditions for the survival of this pest is important for phytosanitary monitoring and inspection. Thus, our objective was to forecast the distribution potential of S. dorsalis with a focus on the Americas. Models were produced to design this distribution, in which the environmental variables used were made available in Wordclim version 2.1. The algorithms used for the modeling were the generalized additive model (GAM), generalized linear model (GLM), maximum entropy (MAXENT), random forest (RF), and Bioclim, in addition to the ensemble, which consisted of the grouping of the algorithms used. The metrics used to evaluate the models were area over the curve (AUC), true ability statistics (TSS), and Sorensen score. All models had satisfactory results (> 0.8) for all metrics used. In North America, the model showed favorable regions on the west coast of the USA and east coast near New York. In South America, the potential distribution of the pest is significant, encompassing regions in all countries. It is concluded that S. dorsalis has suitable areas for the occurrence in the three American subcontinents and, in particular, a large part of South America.

PMID:36884146 | DOI:10.1007/s13744-023-01038-0

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