Impact of Feeding by Lygus hesperus (Heteroptera: Miridae) on Red Clover Grown for Seed

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Lygus hesperus Knight reduced seed set an average of 20% when five adult bugs fed 2 d on culms of red clover, Trifolium pratense L., in different stages of floral development. The dominant form of damage was shriveled seed pods approximately twice the size of reproductive parts of unpollinated florets. Bugs also produced shriveled seeds by feeding directly on seeds when the endosperm had a watery consistency. Despite the presence of many other suitable host plants, wintering females preferred dog fennel, Anthemis cotula L., for oviposition, based on field samples of first-generation nymphs collected on various hosts. First-generation adults that developed successfully on dog fennel produced a second generation on red clover that averaged 4.9 bugs per sweep in two study fields. A weed-control program is recommended for dog fennel both alongside and within red clover as part of a L. hesperus management program.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 1987

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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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