Submitted to: Revista Mexicana de Fitopatologia
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/6/2018
Publication Date: 8/20/2018
Citation: Esquivel, J.F., Medrano, E.G. 2018. Transmission of Nematospora coryli to multiple cotton bolls by individual stink bugs. Revista Mexicana de Fitopatologia. 36:S6.
Technical Abstract: Cotton is a high value cash crop that is persistently plagued by insect pests such as stink bugs and related species. Stink bugs were recently shown to vector pathogens, causing necrosis of the cotton seed and lint, but the frequency of pathogen transmission by individual stink bugs is undocumented. Individual southern green stink bug [Nezara viridula (L.)] adults (n = 100) were fed green beans (Phaseolus vulgaris L.) infected with the fungus Nematospora coryli (Peglion) and exposed to five (5) successive bolls of known age to determine potential for infection of multiple bolls by a single stink bug. Stink bug adults fed upon 82.4% of available bolls (n = 108) and pathogen transmission occurred on 68.5% of these bolls (n = 89). Normal flora microbes were detected in all available bolls. Overall insect feeding frequency ranged from 1 to 5 bolls per stink bug; more importantly, the frequency of boll infection also ranged from 1 to 5 bolls per stink bug. The frequency of Nematospora infection in bolls exposed to males and females did not differ between sexes (Fisher’s Exact Test: P = 0.84) and the number of females and males infecting 1 to 5 bolls did not differ (Fisher’s Exact Test: P = 0.92). These findings can serve as an impetus for determining whether current insect management thresholds should be reconsidered given the potential for multiple boll infections by individual southern green stink bugs.