Widespread distribution. Asia, Africa, Europe, Oceania. Sweetpotato main host, but it also occurs on eggplant, capsicum, tomato, and legumes. Occasionally, an important pest.
Larvae eat young succulent leaves. Eggs are laid singly on the leaves and stems. Outbreaks are not common, although they are devastating when they occur.
Natural enemies: parasitoid wasps and predators.
Cultural control: avoid planting next to gardens where outbreaks have occurred; handpicking; use chickens; collect vines and other trash and burn after harvest.
Chemical control: none recommended for routine treatments, as pesticides will disrupt natural control. For major outbreaks: PDPs: neem, derris, pyrethrum, or chilli; or biopesticides – Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis), or spinosad. Synthetic pyrethroids are likely to kill natural enemies.