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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: A Scanning Electron Microscopic Analysis of Adult Silverleaf Whitefly (Bemisia Argentifolii) Probing and Feeding on Cotton Leaves

Authors
item Freeman, Thomas - NORTH DAKOTA STATE UNIV
item Nelson, Dennis
item Buckner, James
item Chu, Chang Chi
item Henneberry, Thomas

Submitted to: Plant Resistance to Insects Workshop Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: March 22, 2000
Publication Date: N/A

Technical Abstract: Silverleaf whiteflies, Bemisia argentifolii, feed on a wide variety of plants in tropical and subtropical climates worldwide. The factors determining host selection as well as feeding and oviposition sites on the leaf are not known. Current theory suggests that whiteflies feed and oviposit on the abaxial surface of leaves due to the closer proximity of phloem tissue to the surface. Using a combination of light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy, we have shown that the labium of the adult feeding apparatus surrounds the slender feeding stylet and that the stylet is long enough that the adult can reach a phloem bundle from any position on the leaf. In the feeding process, the tip of the labium, which contains chemosensory or mechano-chemosensory sensilla, is placed against the leaf surface. The tip of the labium appears to become glued to the surface of the leaf. The adult then uses the serrated tip of the stylet to penetrate the plant epidermis.

Last Modified: 7/31/2014
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