Characteristics of Transmission of a Horseradish Brittle Root Isolate of Spiroplasma citri by the Beet Leafhopper., Circulifer tenellus (Homoptera: Cicadellidae)

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Abstract:

Characteristics of transmission of a horseradish brittle root isolate of Spiroplasma citri from Illinois by the beet leafhopper, Circulifer tenellus (Baker), were determined in laboratory tests. Effects of acquisition access period (AAP), incubation period (IP), and inoculation access period (lAP) on vector efficiency were investigated. Turnip (Brassica rapa L.) was used as the source and test plant species. Percentage of test plants developing infections was the criterion for determining percentage of inoculative leafhoppers (vector efficiency) per treatment. Nymphs given AAPs as brief as 45 min were inoculative when confined subsequently as adults on test plants. Transmission rates by leafhoppers given AAPs as nymphs peaked following an AAP of 5 d, remained fairly steady at AAPs of 9-17 d, and then dropped sharply at an AAP of 21 d. The minimum IP (which we define to include AAP) at which transmission of S. citri could be determined was from 7-9 d. Transmission frequencies did not increase significantly when insects were tested at periods longer than 17-23 d after the start of an AAP. The inoculation threshold period was ca. 15 min; percentage of inoculative leafhoppers did not increase significantly with lAPs longer than 2 d. Vector efficiencies of leafhoppers caged singly on test plants reached highs ranging from 41-90% in individual experiments. Males were generally more efficient vectors than were females. These findings indicate that C. tenet/us can readily acquire and transmit S. citri at a high frequency.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 1988

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