Tracking an ectoparasitic fungus of Harmonia axyridis in the USA using literature records and citizen science data
Abstract: Hesperomyces harmoniae nom. prov. (Ascomycota: Laboulbeniales) is a common fungal ectoparasite of Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), a globally invasive pest species. We launched an initiative to create a dataset encompassing all available records of the H. axyridis – H. harmoniae nom. prov. association in the USA. Reports have been gathered from the literature and from online citizen science platforms such as Bugguide and iNaturalist. A total of 163 curated records were downloaded from Bugguide and iNaturalist. Using these records, we built a distribution map available at http://beetlehangers.org. All occurrences are shown, each with location information, collection date, collector(s), and source – Bugguide, iNaturalist or literature. In time, the map will become searchable by date, as to be able to determine where in the USA the ladybirds–parasite association originated and track its distributional expansion over the years.