In the Yaqui Valley of Sonora in northwest Mexico, the saltmarsh caterpillar, Estigmene acrea (Drury), has caused severe damage and stand reduction to fall-planted corn during 1957 and 1958. Field observations and insectary studies indicate that the preferred native host plants both for oviposition and for larval development are Amaranth, Amaranthus palmeri S. Wats., and ground cherry, Physalis angulata L. Studies of the biology of E. acrea indicated that the time required for development from egg to adult is approximately 1 month during July, August, and September, when the largest populations are produced, and that four or five generations occur per year. Natural enemies of E. acrea observed in this region include a Coccincllid and a Malachiid attacking the eggs, and two species of Reduviids and a fungus attacking the larvae. In chemical control tests, Dipterex® (O,O-dimethyl 2,2,2-trichloro-1-hydroxyethylphosphonate) at 0.5 kg./ha. has shown promise. Toxaphene 2.9 kg., endrin 0.4 kg., ethyl parathion 0.5 kg., methyl parathion 0.5 kg., Thiodan® (6,7,8,9,10,10-hexachloro-1.5.5a.9,9a-hexahydro-6,9-methano-2,4,3-benzodioxathiepin-3-oxide) 0.5 kg., and heptachlor 1.0 kg. were not effective.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: December 1, 1959
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