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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Stink Bugs in Midsouth Cotton: Identification, Life Cycles, and Natural Enemies

Authors
item Williams, Livy
item Castle, Sandra

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: January 1, 2004
Publication Date: January 31, 2004
Citation: Williams, L., III & S. C. Castle. 2004. Stink bugs in midsouth cotton: identification, life cycles, and natural enemies. Proceedings of the Beltwide Cotton Conferences. pp. 1898-1899.

Interpretive Summary: Several species of stink bugs feed on Midsouth row crops, including cotton, soybean, corn, and sorghum. This damage causes millions of dollars in yield loss every year. In the past, these bugs have been regarded as sporadic pests, but their importance is expected to increase in response to the reduction of insecticide applications resulting from widespread use of transgenic cotton and the implementation of the boll weevil eradication program. It is likely that researchers, consultants, and growers will encounter stink bugs more frequently in the future. Therefore, it is important that they be familiar with these insects. This poster presents information on the life history and identification of the predominant stink bugs in Midsouth cotton. These include the pests: brown stink bug, green stink bug, red-shouldered stink bug, and southern green stink bug, as well as a beneficial (i.e., predaceous) stink bug, the spined soldier bug. Easy-to-use characters are illustrated to help distinguish the different species. Life history information and illustrations are also presented for several important beneficial insects that attack stink bugs. Data on stink bug egg mortality in cotton and adjacent weedy plants is presented, and the potential for biological control is discussed.

Technical Abstract: A complex of stink bugs causes damage to Midsouth row crops, including cotton, soybean, corn, and sorghum. In the past, these bugs have been regarded as sporadic pests, but their importance is expected to increase in response to the reduction of insecticide applications resulting from widespread use of transgenic cotton and the implementation of the boll weevil eradication program. It is likely that researchers, consultants, and producers will encounter stink bugs more frequently in the future. Therefore, this poster presents information on the life history and identification of the predominant stink bugs in Midsouth cotton. These include the pests: brown stink bug, (Euschistus servus), green stink bug (Acrosternum hilare), red-shouldered stink bug, (Thyanta custator), and southern green stink bug (Nezara viridula), as well as the beneficial: spined soldier bug (Podisus maculoventris). Easy-to-use characters are illustrated to help distinguish the different species. Life history information and illustrations are also presented for several important natural enemies of stink bugs. Data on stink bug egg mortality in cotton and adjacent non-crop vegetation is presented, and the potential for biological control is discussed.

Last Modified: 10/20/2014
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