The Biology of the Pine Webworm, Tetralopha robustella, in Wisconsin1

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The pine webworm, Tetralopha robusrtella Zeller, is a potential pest ill Wisconsin as a defoliator of red and jack pines. Its life history and habits were studied in a plantation of red pine and a natural stand of jack pine on the sandy Wisconsin River valley. The webworm is widely distributed throughout the eastern half of the United States, and has been recorded on 10 species of pine.

An analysis of head capsule measurements using Dyar's Rule indicates six instars. A general description of eggs, larvae, cocoons, and adults of the webworm is given. Webworm larvae overwinter in sand-covered cocoons within the first inch of soil beneath the host tree. Pupation occurs in early .June and adults emerge about two weeks later. Oviposition begins in early .July and continues until mid-August. Larvae appeal' in early .July and spend at least. the first instar' mining needles. Then they leave the needles and construct frass shelters in which several live for the remainder of the larval feeding period. They begin to abandon the nest to enter the ground to overwinter in mid-September; so,ne remain in the frass nest. until mid-November.

Eight parasites and two insect predators were found feeding on the webworm. Twig and branch foraging birds were also observed destroying frass nests and eating webworms.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 1960

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  • Journal of Economic Entomology is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December. The journal publishes articles on the economic significance of insects and is divided into the following sections: apiculture & social insects; arthropods in relation to plant disease; forum; insecticide resistance and resistance management; ecotoxicology; biological and microbial control; ecology and behavior; sampling and biostatistics; household and structural insects; medical entomology; molecular entomology; veterinary entomology; forest entomology; horticultural entomology; field and forage crops, and small grains; stored-product; commodity treatment and quarantine entomology; and plant resistance. In addition to research papers, Journal of Economic Entomology publishes Letters to the Editor, interpretive articles in a Forum section, Short Communications, Rapid Communications, and Book Reviews.
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