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ARS Home » Plains Area » Manhattan, Kansas » Center for Grain and Animal Health Research » Stored Product Insect and Engineering Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #377984

Research Project: Sustainable Management Strategies for Stored-Product Insects

Location: Stored Product Insect and Engineering Research

Title: Brown marmorated stink bug overwintering aggregations are not regulated through vibrational signals during autumn dispersal

Author
item BEDOYA, CAROL - University Of Canterbury
item BROCKERHOFF, ECKEHARD - New Zealand Forest Research Institute
item HAYES, MICHAEL - University Of Canterbury
item Leskey, Tracy
item Morrison Iii, William - Rob
item RICE, KEVIN - University Of Missouri
item NELSON, XIMENA - University Of Canterbury

Submitted to: Royal Society Open Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/30/2020
Publication Date: 11/18/2020
Citation: Bedoya, C.L., Brockerhoff, E.G., Hayes, M., Leskey, T.C., Morrison III, W.R., Rice, K.B., Nelson, X.J. 2020. Brown marmorated stink bug overwintering aggregations are not regulated through vibrational signals during autumn dispersal. Royal Society Open Science. 7(11):201371. https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.201371.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.201371

Interpretive Summary: The brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), Halyomorpha halys, is regarded as one of the world’s most worst invasive pest species, as it feeds on a wide range of economically important crops. During autumn, BMSB eventually moves to potential overwintering sites, such as human-made structures or among trees in the landscape where it will alight and seek out a final overwintering location, often aggregating with other adults. The cues used during this process are unknown, but may involve sound. We evaluated whether vibrational signals produced by BMSB regulate aggregation behavior during overwintering site selection. Both movement and vibrational signal production increased after the second week past the autumnal equinox, and peaked in week four, before decreasing. We found that only males produced vibrations during autumn, but there was no correlation between movement and vibrational signals, which we confirmed through playback experiments. However, it is likely that vibrations by BMSB may communicate information about group size and quality of habitat to other stink bugs.

Technical Abstract: The brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae), is regarded as one of the world’s most pernicious invasive pest species, as it feeds on a wide range of economically important crops. During this autumn dispersal period, H. halys ultimately moves to potential overwintering sites, such as human-made structures or trees where it will alight and seek out a final overwintering location, often aggregating with other adults. The cues used during this process are unknown, but may involve vibrational signals. We evaluated whether vibrational signals regulate cluster aggregation in H. halys in overwintering site selection. We collected acoustic data for 6-weeks during the autumn dispersal period and used it to quantify movement and detect vibrational communication of individuals colonizing overwintering shelters. Both movement and vibrational signal production increased after the second week, reaching their maxima in week four, before decaying again. We found that only males produced vibrations in this context, yet there was no correlation between movement and vibrational signals, which was confirmed through playback experiments. The cues regulating the formation of aggregations remain largely unknown, but vibrations may indicate group size.