Submitted to: Journal of Entomological Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/2/2009
Publication Date: 4/5/2009
Citation: Armstrong, J.S. 2009. A comparison of rearing Creontiades signatus distant on green bean pods or pea plants. Journal of Entomological Science. 45(2):193-196.
Interpretive Summary: We compared mass rearing a plant bug pest of cotton using green bean pods and whole cowpea plants to determine which host would provide the easiest and most efficient method for producing the insect in culture. More eggs were oviposited in the green bean pods when compared to the cowpeas, but the number of eggs that turned into nymphs and adults was almost identical. The difference in the success of eggs making it to nymphs and adults was the integrity of the host plant. The green beans dehydrated and shrunk, reducing the number of eggs that actually hatched. The cowpea, which was kept in hydroponic solution after the eggs were laid, maintained its integrity allowing for a higher portion of the eggs to successfully make it to adulthood. Even though the number of eggs laid on the green bean pods was higher, the most consistent rearing host appears to be the cowpea plant.
Technical Abstract: A laboratory procedure for mass rearing Creontiades signatus Distant, a relatively new plant bug pest of south Texas cotton, was compared using green bean pods versus whole cowpea plants to determine which would provide for the easiest most efficient method for producing the insect in culture. The number of eggs oviposited was significantly higher on the green bean pods compared to the cowpea plants, however, the production of nymphs and adults was almost identical over the 12 weeks of the rearing study. The green bean pods shrunk as they aged, limiting the number of eggs that developed to nymphs and adults. The cowpeas, kept in hydroponic solution inside the rearing chambers, maintained their integrity as an oviposition substrate resulting in a significant portion of the eggs that were oviposited successfully make it to nymphs and adults. The more consistent and reliable method for rearing Creontiades signatus with a higher portion of eggs successfully turning into adults was achieved by utilizing the whole cowpea plants. This method is the first published on rearing Creontiades signatus in culture and will remain the most efficient until a better host plant is discovered, or an acceptable artificial diet is developed.