Growth and Survival of Tobacco Budworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) Larvae Fed Florida Beggarweed (Fabaceae) and Tobacco (Solanaceae)

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Four age groups (newly hatched, 3-, 5-, and 7-day-old) of tobacco budworm larvae, Heliothis virescens (F.), were each fed three phenological stages of Florida beggarweed, Desmodium tortuosum (Swartz) de Candolle, two stages of tobacco, Nicotiana tabacum L., and pinto bean artificial diet. Larvae were placed onto intact plants inside screen cages or onto artificial diet in cups for both laboratory and field experiments. After 7 days, larvae were either counted and measured (1978) or counted and weighed (1979). Newly hatched larvae grew equally well on all stages of beggarweed and nonflowering tobacco. Older larvae (3-, 5-, or 7-day-old) generally survived better and gained more weight on tobacco than on beggarweed. Larvae fed tobacco only or beggarweed only produced pupae nearly the same size as diet-reared pupae (280 mg). Newly hatched larvae fed artificial diet survived between 1.9 and 7.2-fold better and gained 1.7 to 6.7-fold more weight in 7 days than did those fed tobacco or beggarweed. Older larvae also generally survived better and gained more weight on artificial diet than on the intact plants.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 1984

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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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