Submitted to: Southwestern Entomologist
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/19/2004
Publication Date: 6/1/2004
Citation: Showler, A., Setamou, M. 2004. Effects of kaolin particle film on selected arthropod populations in cotton in the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas. Southwestern Entomologist. 29(2):137-146.
Interpretive Summary: Kaolin, a white, nontoxic mineral that can be sprayed onto crops, deters boll weevils and beet armyworm ovipositioning and feeding on cotton squares and foliage. This study assessed the effects of kaolin on other insects common to cotton. Cotton aphid numbers increased where kaolin was applied in cotton field plots, but leafhopper numbers were reduced. Other arthropod groups were either minimally or not affected, including various herbivores and natural enemies.
Technical Abstract: Kaolin particle film applied to cotton, Gossypium hirsutum L., foliage deters boll weevil, Anthonomus grandis grandis Boheman, and beet armyworm, Spodoptera exigua (Hubner), ovipositioning and feeding on cotton squares and foliage. This study assessed the effects of weekly- and biweekly-applied kaolin on herbivorous and natural enemy arthropods in field grown cotton. Leaf counts and dvac sampling indicated that cotton aphid, Aphis gossypii Glover, populations increased in kaolin treated plots as compared to the kaolin-free control plots, but cicadellid populations were suppressed. Populations of dipterans, Orius spp., and wasps were reduced in the kaolin treatments only on one of ten sampling dates over two seasons (2000, 2001). Foliar kaolin sprays had no effect on other arthropod groups identified in this study (silverleaf whitefly, Bemisia argentifolii Bellows and Perring; herbivorous hemipterans and coleopterans; thrips; lepidopteran larvae; Geocoris spp.; Nabis spp.; reduviids; coccinellids; Collops spp.; neuropterans; and spiders).