Effects of Rainfall on Range Forage and Populations of Grasshoppers, San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation, Arizona1

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The effects of fall and winter precipitation and of the response of range plants to weather on populations of grasshopper species that hatch in the spring were studied from 1953through 1967 in areas of the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation containing sparse to moderate amounts of shortgrasses. A rain gauge was situated in each such area, surveys of vegetation were made in the spring and summer, and populations of grasshoppers were recorded every 2 weeks throughout the 15 years. Rainfall from Oct. 1 to Mar. 31 had a direct effect on vegetation and an indirect effect on populations of grasshoppers. In three 2- year periods (1953-54, 1957-58, and 1962-63) when rainfall was good, the spring vegetation was abundant, and populations of grasshoppers increased. During the dry springs of 1955, 1959, and 1964, annual weedy vegetation was sparse and stunted, and although the initial populations of grasshoppers were large, they decreased drastically by summer. Populations of grasshoppers were low through the springs of 1956, 1960-61, and 1965-67, regardless of the conditions of the range.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 1969

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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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