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Title: Collection of fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) adults and nontarget Hymenoptera in different colored Unitraps

item Meagher, Robert - Rob

Submitted to: Florida Entomologist
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/12/2001
Publication Date: 3/1/2001
Citation: Meagher Jr, R.L. 2001. Collection of fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) adults and nontarget Hymenoptera in different colored Unitraps. Florida Entomologist. 84(1):77-82.

Interpretive Summary: The fall armyworm is a moth pest whose larvae attack various row crops such as corn, rice, forage grasses, cotton, and peanuts in the eastern and central United States. It is present all year in southern Florida and Texas, but migrates to the northern part of its range during spring, summer, and fall seasons. Growers of sweet corn in southern Florida may apply over 20 insecticide applications per season to control this pest. Because of environmental concerns over insecticide applications, new population monitoring techniques and alternative control strategies are needed. Sex pheromone baits were developed and are used to detect and measure population sizes. Scientists at the Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology, Gainesville, Florida, are improving trapping techniques that will aid in monitoring adult fall armyworm populations. In this report, plastic bucket traps of different colors were tested in grower fields for attraction and collection of fall armyworm male moths. Bucket traps have three parts, a canopy, funnel, and collecting bucket. Each of these parts can be of different colors. The first test, conducted in peanut fields, showed that more moths were collected in standard-colored traps (green canopy, yellow funnel, and white bucket) than in all-white or all-green traps. The second test, conducted in corn fields, compared the standard traps to those with different yellow colored-buckets. Results indicated that traps with yellow buckets caught slightly more moths than the standard white buckets, but probably not enough to warrant a change in practice.

Technical Abstract: Field experiments were conducted to determine the effectiveness of different colored pheromone-baited traps in capture of fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda, males and nontarget Hymenoptera. Plastic Unitraps of different colors were baited with commercial sex pheromone and were placed in peanut and corn fields in northern Florida. In one study, standard-colored (green canopy, yellow funnel, white bucket) traps collected more moths than all-white or all-green traps. More Sphecoidea were found in white traps while more Vespoidea were collected in standard traps. In another study, trap capture was compared among standard, all-white, and standard traps with buckets painted two different yellow colors. Results showed that there were few differences in capture among traps with different colors, however, contrasts between traps with yellow buckets or traps with white buckets suggested more moths could be captured in yellow-bucket traps. Very few Hymenoptera were collected, although more Apoidea were found in white traps.