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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Tifton, Georgia » Southeast Watershed Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #386274

Research Project: Biologically-based Management Systems for Insect Pests and Pollinators in Agricultural Landscapes in the Southeastern Region

Location: Southeast Watershed Research

Title: Characterizing the spatiotemporal distribution of stink bugs (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) across an agricultural landscape

item Grabarczyk, Erin
item Cottrell, Ted
item Tillman, Patricia - Glynn

Submitted to: Insects
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/28/2021
Publication Date: 9/22/2021
Citation: Grabarczyk, E.E., Cottrell, T.E., Tillman, P.G. 2021. Characterizing the spatiotemporal distribution of stink bugs (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) across an agricultural landscape. Insects.

Interpretive Summary: Stink bugs are pests that eat and cause damage to a variety of crops. Habitats that surround farms, such as forests, wetlands, and pastures may play a role in where stink bugs are found. ARS researchers found that Brown stink bugs were most often captured in crops, while Dusky stink bugs were captured in forest, and Green stink bugs were found in both farm fields and non-crop habitat. An additional finding that all three stink bug species were observed to aggregate early in the cropping season near field edges that were near to fruiting black cherry and elderberry suggests that stink bug control may be improved by targeting treatments to nearby habitats preferred by these pests.

Technical Abstract: Stink bugs (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) are polyphagous pests that cause significant annual economic losses to a variety of crops. Although many species have been documented to aggregate within agricultural fields, much less is known regarding distribution patterns of adults and nymphs within and between surrounding non-crop habitat. We explored the spatiotemporal distribution of Euschistus servus (Say), Euschistus tristigmus (Say), and Chinavia hilaris (Say) and examined whether distribution patterns varied between species according to habitat type. Stink bugs were monitored weekly for three years within an 18 km2 grid of pheromone-baited traps. We tested whether habitat type affected distribution patterns, used Spatial Analysis by Distance Indices (SADIE) to identify aggregations, and visualized distributions with interpolated maps. Overall, Euschistus servus adults were captured in crops, whereas E. tristigmus adults and nymphs were mainly captured in forests. Accordingly, distribution patterns of E. tristigmus were relatively stable over time, whereas aggregations of adult E. servus varied over space, and the timing of aggregations reflected the phenology of major crops. Chinavia hilaris were most often captured in forest followed by crop habitat. Pest management strategies for stink bugs may require taking an area-based approach that accounts for movement in agricultural fields and the surrounding habitat.