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Coffee berry borer in coffee

Hypothenemus hampei (syn. Cryphalus hampei, Hypothenemus coffeae) Agakoko gapfumura imbuto z’ikawa in Kinyarwanda, Scolyte des baies de café in French
  • Plant coffee varieties (Harrar; POP 3303/21; Jackson 2/1257; BM 139) tolerant to coffee berry borer damage
  • Mix shade trees (Alnus, Calliandra, Leuceana) with coffee trees for shade to favour natural enemies of borers
  • Harvest every time there are fully ripe berries as these are susceptible to infestation. Place sacks or sheets under the trees you are harvesting from to prevent berries from being lost in mulch
  • Prune in June-August coupled with de-suckering all shoots and excessive suckers- leave 2 suckers
  • Branch stripping: Pick remaining berries after harvest (including fallen ones) as they are hosts of the borers. Boil in water and bury.
  • Look for tiny dark cylindrical holes at bottom of coffee berries or black beetles of 1 ½ mm.
  • Open some coffee berries to observe beetle, white beetle larvae or black dead cells due to borer damage
  • Inspect coffee plants at least once per week for coffee berry borers, 8-32 weeks after flowering as that is when they attack both green and ripe berries
  • Count all berries on at least 3 lower branches of 10 trees per hectare and evaluate percentage attack.
  • Threshold: consider action at 4-6% infested berries per tree on average.
  • Place 20 traps/ha (plastic water bottles painted with red colour and containing kairomones), or traps with 1:1 ethanol + methanol lure to trap flying borers. Inspect traps 14 days after and remove berry borers. Check if there are still kairomones in the trap bottles.
  • Use Beauveria bassiana (such as BOTANIGARD® ES), usually apply 1.0 to 1.5 L/acre in 50 L of water to berries and the soil surface (where berries fall) between 60 and 150 days after flowering. But check product labels.
  • Pesticide sprays must be done before the beetles lay eggs. The best time is when the adult females are flying (see traps). This happens all year long but most often between 60 and 150 days after flowering. This is at older not yet hardened berries close to maturity. Spray mornings or evenings.
  • When using a pesticide or botanical, always wear protective clothing and follow the instructions on the product label, such as dosage, timing of application, pre-harvest interval, max number of sprays, restricted re-entry interval. Do not empty into drains and water sources.
  • Always consult recent list of registered pesticides of RALIS in Rwanda.
  • Use Azadirachitin – based products; (such as Nimbecidine, and others), usually applied at 5mL/L of water (max 2.5-3L/ha), but double-check product label.
  • Not-WHO classified, but considered unlikely acute hazardous in normal use. Harmful to predatory mites, flower bugs, parasitoids, Max. 1 spray. pre-harvest interval p.h.i: 0 days, restricted re-entry interval r.e.i: ½ day
  • Use Pyrethrin – based products (e.g. Pyrethrum 5 EW) usually applied at 20mL/5L of water, but double-check product label.
  • Not WHO-classified, but considered slightly acute hazardous in normal use. Harmful to parasitoids and fish. p.h.i: 1-3 days, r.e.i: ½ day
  • Imidacloprid – based products; (Confidor®, Admire® , or others), a systemic neo-neonicotinoid pesticide.
  • WHO toxicity class II (moderately acute hazardous). r.e.i. ½ day, p.h.i: 14 days. Toxic to bees (do not apply when coffee or other plants are flowering). Max. 1 spray.
  • Alpha-cypermethrin – based products (e.g: Astound, Fastac, and others), a synthetic pyrethroid, non-systemic with contact and stomach action. Usually applied at 5-10mL/L water, but check label.
  • WHO toxicity class II (moderately acute hazardous). r.e.i.: 12 hrs, p.h.i: 24 hours; Toxic to bees (do not apply when bees are foraging; not when coffee or other plants are flowering). Max. 1 spray per season
AUTHOR(S): Alexandre Rutikanga (University of Rwanda, College of Agriculture) Rwanda, phone no (+250) 788 41 50 85, email:

PRODUCED BY: Plantwise

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