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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Reno, Nevada » Great Basin Rangelands Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #305212

Research Project: Ecological Interactions in Integrated and Biologically-Based Management of Invasive Plant Species in Western Rangelands

Location: Great Basin Rangelands Research

Title: Stephanopachys conicola Fisher (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae) feeding on decaying western juniper (Juniperus occidentalis Hook. var. occidentalis) berries: a novel association for Bostrichidae

Author
item Tonkel, Kirk
item Rector, Brian
item Longland, William - Bill
item Dimitri, Lindsay - University Of Nevada
item Ivie, Michael - Montana State University

Submitted to: The Coleopterists Bulletin
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/15/2014
Publication Date: 10/18/2014
Citation: Tonkel, K.C., Rector, B.G., Longland, W.S., Dimitri, L.A., Ivie, M.A. 2014. Stephanopachys conicola Fisher (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae) feeding on decaying western juniper (Juniperus occidentalis Hook. var. occidentalis) berries: a novel association for Bostrichidae. The Coleopterists Bulletin. 68:403-406.

Interpretive Summary: Pinyon-juniper expansion is a growing problem for ranchers and land managers in the western U.S. Little is known about the suite of insects that attack western juniper seeds, and their potential to influence the number of viable seeds a tree produces. As part of a study of western juniper seed ecology, berries and litter were collected from three sites in northeastern California (Madeline, Shinn Peak and Likely; all in Lassen and Modoc Co, California) in 2011 and 2012. In the process of rearing out insects infesting western juniper berries, a rarely collected species of beetle, Stephanopachys conicola Fisher (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae), was found feeding on decaying berries. Sixty adults were reared from berries collected on the ground at the Likely, CA site, although no known collections of this beetle report western juniper berries as a host. The unexpected discovery of this rarely collected bostrichid living in juniper berries has implications on bostrichid evolution, stored product pests, and the seed ecology of Intermountain West juniper populations.

Technical Abstract: As part of a study of Juniperus occidentalis Hook. var. occidentalis seed ecology, berries and litter were collected from three sites in northeastern California (Madeline, Shinn Peak and Likely; all in Lassen and Modoc Co, California) in 2011 and 2012. Sixty adult Stephanopachys conicola Fisher (Coleoptera: Bostrichidae) were reared from berries collected on the ground at the Likely, CA site, although no known collections of S. conicola report J. occidentalis berries as a host. The unexpected discovery of this rarely collected bostrichid living in juniper berries raises issues of bostrichid evolution, stored product pest pathways, and the seed ecology of juniper systems.