Gestronella Weise (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae: Cassidinae) contains six species from Africa (Staines 2012) and has never been revised. Gestronella centrolineata (Fairmaire) and Gestronella lugubris (Fairmaire) have been reported as pests of palms and Appert (1974) studied them under caged conditions.
Gestronella centrolineata and Gestronella lugubris are found in Madagascar.
Gestronella centrolineata feeds on palms (Uhmann 1963); Acanthophoenix crinita Wendl. (Jolivet 1979); and Cocos nucifera L. (Appert 1974) (Arecaceae).
Gestronella lugubris feeds on Cocos nucifera L. (Arecaceae) (Lepesme 1947).
Gestronella centrolineata and G. lugubris can cause extensive leaf damage to coconuts.
According to Appert (1974) the eggs are laid along the midribs of the folded leaflets and covered by the female with a foamy adhesive which prevents the unfolding of the leaflet; for G. lugubris each group contains 8-12 eggs and for G. centrolineata 1-2. The egg stage lasts 4-12 days for G. centrolineata and 4-14 days for G. lugubris, being shortest at 30°C and longest at 18°C. The larval stage lasts 47 and 50 days for the two species at 25°C and the pupal stage 6.3 and 7.5 days; the adults of both species live for about a month. Studies of leaf consumption by the larvae and adults indicated that G. lugubris was 1.5 times as injurious as G. centrolineata although its total life-span averaged only 4 days longer.
Appert, J. 1974. Sur deux coléoptères Hispines du genre Gestronella nuisibles au cocotier à Madagascar. Oléagineux 29 (12): 559-564.
Jolivet, P. 1979. Reflexions sur l’ecologie, l’origine et la distribution des Chrysomelides (Col.) Des Iles Mascareignes, Ocean Indien, avec la description de deux especes nouvelles. Bulletin Mensuel de la Société Linnéenne de Lyon 48 (10): 606-608, 641-643.
Staines, C. L. 2012. Tribe Cryptonychini. Catalog of the hispines of the world (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae: Cassidinae). http://entomology.si.edu/Collections_Coleoptera.html
Uhmann, E. 1963. Hispinae (Cryptonychini) von den Mascarenen. 210. Beitrag zur Kenntnis der Hispinae (Coleopt. Chrysomelidae). The Mauritius Institute Bulletin 5: 287-298.