State entomologists seek help pinpointing invasive beetle

State entomologists seek help pinpointing invasive beetle

HONOLULU (AP) - Hawaii entomologists are hoping the public can help track down the source of an infestation of invasive coconut rhinoceros beetle in Nanakuli on Oahu.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser newspaper reports the state Department of Agriculture is asking people who live between Nanakuli Avenue and Lualualei Homestead Road to allow compost or mulch on their properties to be inspected for signs of infestation.

Department entomologist Robert Curtiss says beetles found in three cases in Nanakuli likely originated from a load of organic material.

The last known Oahu breeding site was destroyed last week at Iroquois Point.

The large insects bore into the crowns of coconut and other palm trees to feed on sap, killing or damaging the trees.

The infestation of the beetles was first detected on Oahu in December 2013.

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