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View this page in Spanish: Sobre el mapa de plagas or French: À propos de la carte phytosanitaire

Vigilance on the ground in detecting, diagnosing and reporting pests is essential to minimise their spread and limit their impact on vital crops. Local-level distribution information can be very difficult to find, but is extremely useful in, for example, alerting of immediate or potential risks, shaping extension programmes, informing agricultural policy at a national and international level, and modelling the potential effect of climate change on the movement of pests over time.

Note: The boundaries displayed on the map come from the Natural Earth database. They are approximate and are not intended to represent geographic or political boundaries.


The Plantwise mapping application (v2.1) currently displays distribution information from the following sources:

CABI resources

  • Crop Protection Compendium – country level and some state and region-level distribution data
  • Distribution Maps of Plant Pests and Diseases (2003 - present) – country level and some state and region-level distribution data
  • CAB Abstracts text mining - we are now showing more local-level distribution data for pests and diseases, which have been mined from previously published scientific literature
  • CABI Projects Data - we have a sample dataset from one of the projects undertaken by CABI scientists on coffee wilt disease (Gibberella xylarioides) in Uganda

Partner data

We have incorporated distribution data points from our partner in the UK, the National Biodiversity Network (NBN). The NBN offers localised distribution data for many species covering the UK and Ireland, based on surveys from a network of organisations, down to 10 km2 grids. Crop pest data have been extracted and are made available in the Plantwise pest mapping application. We also have data for distribution of the cassava mealybug, Phenacoccus manihoti, in Thailand from the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). The national agricultural research body in Kenya, Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO), has provided localised data on Cercospora zeae-maydis.

We welcome suggestions of other datasets that could be plotted alongside those we currently show.  If you know of, or have any, such distribution or survey information for crop pests, please contact us at .

Plant clinics data

The Plantwise pest mapping application will soon be displaying distribution data from our Plant Clinics. We are currently exploring data collection technologies and processes at our Clinics to incorporate agreed, robust verification processes on potential new disease reports before publication.

Other geographical data

The following geographical properties datasets have also been incorporated into the Plantwise pest mapping application to explore potential layering and filtering functionalities on the properties at a particular localised area of pest distribution to begin establishing what that pest’s environmental requirements might be.

  • Climate zones – the Köppen-Geiger climate classification maps (current data and data based on Köppen-Geiger predictive climate modelling)
  • Soil types – the FAO Digital Soil Map of the World
  • Land use – FAO LADA land use

We are currently exploring the availability of datasets for:

  • Temperatures (ave/min/max)
  • Rainfall (ave/min/max)

Almost any digital dataset could be incorporated into Plantwise. If you feel particular geographical information should be included to make Plantwise a better tool, please let us know:


Where does the information used to report distribution of pests come from?
CABI collects information on pests and diseases from a variety of sources and collates these to generate the most up-to-date source of information on location. This is then plotted on a map to give easy visualisation of pest location. Data is taken from reliable sources and each point is given a source reference to enable the user to judge on its verifiable status. Sources include CABI’s own products (such as CAB Abstracts and the Crop Protection Compendium, and hence the general scientific literature), other organisations that collate such data (often regionally, such as the National Biodiversity Network for the UK), specimen collections (such as herbaria), reports directly from the field, etc.

How can I trust the datasets that you have available?
Datasets are clearly marked with their source and method of compilation to help you make a judgement on those you might include in your analysis depending on the level of verification you need. The most robust will have gone through scientific and editorial review while others were perhaps collated by untrained observers or those in the field without access to necessary diagnostics and should be used with differing degrees of caution.

How up-to-date is this information?
This depends on the source. Data taken from CABI’s Crop Protection Compendium is likely to be the most up-to-date and has gone though CABI’s editorial processes for verification. Other sources are labelled with a date of loading or publication.

Can you plot information taken from Plantwise plant clinics in the field?
Yes, we aim to include such information where we have the appropriate country agreements, to enable the accumulation of granular information on pests worldwide.

What does ‘text mined information’ mean?
In some cases, such as specific surveys or trials, information is given in the scientific literature about sub-national distribution of a pest.  Plantwise is in the process of extracting the geospatial information from the text of CAB Abstracts records to produce species distribution records for plant pests and diseases. So far, this has provided over 3000 detailed sub-country level distribution points, and this number continues to increase.

Can other sub-national information be plotted?
Yes, where it is available, such as the National Biodiversity Network of the UK, herbaria records or from scientist’s datasets. If you have, or know of, other such data sources please let us know:

Is there duplication between data sources?
There may be and users should take this into account. For example, data from CABI’s Distribution Maps of Plant Pests and Diseases are fed into the Crop Protection Compendium both of which can be used as separate data sources within the Plantwise Knowledge Bank.

Can I use such datasets to gain an idea of the spread of pests over time?
Yes, however results should be interpreted cautiously. For example, Mycosphaerella fijiensis has a CABI Map created in 2003 and a more up-to-date set of data from the 2011 Crop Protection Compendium. By turning the plotting of each off and on, the spread of reports of the disease can be seen on the map over the intervening eight years. However, in those years it may be that older (pre-2003) reports have come to light through improved techniques at searching the literature and so changes are not due solely to pest movement.

What is the “Date” on records? Is it when the pest was found, or when the report was published?
In this version of the application, our intention is to preserve the date given at the data source. Depending on the data-gathering philosophy of the source, “date” might mean:

• when the pest was recorded in the field
• when the pest record was recorded into a database from field notes
• when the pest record was verified by an authority
• when the pest record was published in scholarly literature
• when the pest record was collected into Plantwise Knowledge Bank

There is inevitable variation between how each of our sources treat dates that we will address through future development, perhaps by standardising on one definition for date, or by providing information with each piece of date data. Your feedback will be especially important to us here.

What is your approach to reports of pest absence or eradication? Are they plotted on the map alongside presence records?
At present our application only plots records of presence. It is a future avenue of development to handle the timeline of pest discovery through to eradication.

To what do the latitude/longitude values in the marker-click pop-up refer? Are they coordinates for the location where a pest was found?
No, they are the coordinates of the centre of the location that was matched by our software to the original record, whether that is a country, state, grid reference or populated place. So, for example, country-level records are plotted in the centre of that country, and the latitude/longitude values in the pop-up box reflect that.

Can I map two or more species at the same time? I’d like to see where a host species and a pathogen overlap distributions.
Yes, you can map up to three species. So, for example you could map a pest, a host it attacks and a natural enemy of the pest.

I have found a bug or problem with the mapping application. How should I report it?
Please report any bugs to us at Feedback is always welcome, so thank you!