Pollens Ingested by Boll Weevils (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) in Southern Texas and Northeastern Mexico

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Boll weevils, Anthonomus grandis grandis Boheman, were collected in 1978- 1980 from grandlure-baited traps in the Lower Gulf Coast (LGe) and the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) of southern Texas, and in northeastern Mexico (NEM). The weevils were dissected, and the midgut was removed and examined for the presence of pollen grains. Pollen grains representing 12 families of plants were found in boll weevils from the LRGV, 9 families of plants from the LGC, and 6 families of plants from NEM. The most frequently encountered pollen grains were from plants in the families Poaceae (grasses), Brassicaceae (mustards), and Asteraceae (sunflowers and daisies). Some ingested pollen grains could not be identified. In a separate no-choice study, boll weevils were caged on 22 species of plants during blooming to document pollen feeding. Twenty to 100% of the boll weevils caged on a plant species consumed pollen from that species. These data suggest that adult boll weevils in the field may consume pollen from a wide range of plant species; however, further studies are required to confirm this.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 1991

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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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