Ripple, Brandon Wayne (2003-05). Host plant resistance to Whiteflies, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius), Biotype B, (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) in cotton race stocks for breeding improved cotton cultivars. Master's Thesis. Thesis uri icon


  • Whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci, Biotype B, Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) are pests of cotton crops, affecting the yield of the crop both indirectly and directly. These pests feed on the leaves of cotton plants and produce "honeydew," a sticky liquid excretion which covers the lint of the open cotton boll creating problems during the processing of the lint. High densities of these pests also can decrease the productivity of the cotton plant by stripping it of vital nutrients. The primary objective of this research was to screen 116 converted cotton race stocks for resistance to sweetpotato whiteflies. Responses of converted race stocks to whiteflies are compared to that of known susceptible commercial cultivars PSC 355 and Delta Pearl.

    Screens for antibiosis resistance to whitefly were established using excised leaves placed in a nutrient solution ( 1/4 strength Hoagland's). Cohort populations of whiteflies were established on these leaves and followed daily to determine differences in developmental time as well as percent survival. Resistant candidates were determined using a chi-squared test comparing the ranked sums of leaf averages for the two selection criteria, whitefly developmental time and percent whitefly survival, of each cotton race stock to that of the putative known susceptibles (KS). These tests showed 6 converted race stocks to be significantly different (P <= 0.1) from the KS for at least one of the two selection criteria. Of these converted race stocks, M-9044-0154 and M-9044-0156 showed to have lower whitefly survival than the KS, while M-9644-0188, M-9644-0195, M-0044-0221, and M-9644-0242 showed whitefly to have an increased developmental time. Retesting of these six converted race stocks along with several others identified another race stock line, M-0044-0171, which was significantly different from the KS. Retesting also indicated that M-9644-0188 was different for survival in addition to developmental time which was determined in the original screening.

    Additional tests were conducted in the greenhouse and field to examine these race stock lines. Greenhouse screenings indicated that M-9044-0156 and M-9644-0188 contained possible non-preference resistance characteristics. Field screenings conducted in Weslaco and College Station, TX in 2002 and 2003 failed to provide useful data due to low densities of insects.

ETD Chair

publication date

  • May 2003