Observing the devastating coffee berry borer (Hypothenemus hampei) inside the coffee berry using microcomputed tomography

Ignacio Alba-Alejandre, Javier Alba-Tercedor, Fernando E. Vega - Department of Zoology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Granada, Campus de Fuentenueva, 18071, Granada, Spain; Sustainable Perennial Crops Laboratory, United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Beltsville, MD, 20705, USA.

The coffee berry borer is the most devastating insect pest of coffee throughout the world. The insect spends most of its life cycle inside the coffee berry, which makes it quite difficult to observe its behaviour. Micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) was used to observe all developmental stages of the coffee berry borer inside coffee berries (Coffea canephora). An interesting oviposition pattern involving a sequential placement of eggs starting in the periphery of the seed and moving inwards was observed. Micro-CT should be useful in elucidating unknown life history aspects of other seed-feeding bark beetles as well as of bark and ambrosia beetles in general.

How Amira-Avizo Software is used

Volume rendered images and videos were obtained with FEI’s Amira’s software v. 6.5.0.