Plant Response and Economic Injury Levels for a Boll-Feeding Sucking Bug Complex on Cotton.
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Whole-plant cage field experiments were conducted in 2014, 2015, and 2016 to characterize cotton injury from a species complex of boll-feeding sucking bugs represented by the verde plant bug, Creontiades signatus (Distant) (Hemiptera: Miridae), brown stink bug, Euschistus servus (Say), green stink bug, Acrosternum hilare (Say), and redbanded stink bug, Piezodorus guildinii (Westwood) (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae). Field-collected adult bugs were used to infest cotton plants previously maintained free of insect injury. Plants caged in groups of four were infested at mid-bloom and late-bloom for 7 d with four insect densities: 0 (control), 0.25 bugs per plant, 1 bug per plant, and 2 bugs per plant. Species and water stress conditions varied across years, allowing selective within-year comparisons. Response to feeding resulted in boll injury in the form of lint deterioration and cotton boll rot at mid- and late-bloom stages, and in water limiting and non-water limiting conditions. Although plant injury was apparent across a wide range of conditions, subsequent yield decline attributed to insect feeding was seen primarily under water limiting conditions when plants were infested at mid-bloom. For these conditions, significant yield-insect density relationships were used to calculate economic injury levels (EILs) for each species. EILs expressed as bugs per plant from lowest to highest were the brown stink bug (0.29-0.31 bugs per plant), redbanded stink bug (0.33), verde plant bug (0.49), and green stink bug (0.50). Given the variability observed among species, species-specific EILs may be used where the injurious species is known and combined for stink bugs (a common EIL of 0.34 bugs per plant) where multiple species occur. Verde plant bug was less damaging and can be considered separately, but its EIL was generally within a range of values for the boll-feeders encountered.
author list (cited authors)
Glover, J. P., Brewer, M. J., Parajulee, M. N., & Sword, G. A.