Submitted to: National Cotton Council Beltwide Cotton Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/5/2005
Publication Date: 6/28/2005
Citation: Esquivel, J.F. 2005. Occurrence of the cotton fleahopper in a previously unreported early-season host in Central Texas. In: Proceedings of the Beltwide Cotton Conferences, January 4-7, 2005, New Orleans, Louisiana. 2005 CDROM. Interpretive Summary: The cotton fleahopper continues to be a major early-season cotton pest in the southern and southeastern United States. Senescing native host plants contribute to the development of early-season fleahopper populations, and their subsequent movement into fruiting cotton. In Central Texas, Rapistrum rugosum (commonly known as turnipweed) was identified as a previously unreported host. Adults and immatures were collected in blooming turnipweed during 2003 and 2004. Also, the average proportion of adults that were females was typically less than 0.50. Identification of turnipweed as a new early-season host has led to additional research examining the influence of weather conditions on fleahopper dispersal. Findings in the current study, and those anticipated from dispersal studies, will provide insight into factors contributing to the development and movement of early-season fleahopper populations.
Technical Abstract: The cotton fleahopper continues to pose early-season threats to developing cotton in Central Texas and in other areas of the Cotton Belt. Blooming native weed species were sampled year-round to monitor plant bug populations in Central Texas. Cotton fleahoppers were collected from Rapistrum rugosum during the early spring in Central Texas. Rapistrum rugosum, commonly known as turnipweed, has not been previously reported as an early-season host plant in the region. Capture data provided documentation of cotton fleahopper adults and nymphs on this host. The mean proportion of adults that were females was typically less that 0.50. These findings are being used in additional research avenues addressing cotton fleahopper movement and migration. Results from the current study, in conjunction with dispersal studies, should provide insight into factors which can influence the development and movement of early-season cotton fleahopper populations.