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Sampling Methods and Spatial Distribution Patterns for Threecornered Alfalfa Hopper Nymphs (Homoptera: Membracidae) on Soybean

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Estimates of Spissisttlus festtnus (Say) nymphal populations in soybean by ground-cloth, ground-cloth plus plant-base inspection, and whole-plant inspection methods were compared with absolute estimates obtained by bagging plants. Spatial distribution patterns were described by Taylor's power law for each sampling method. Whole-plant inspection was the most suitable method because of the high fidelity of its population estimates to absolute estimates and the absence of marked age-class bias. Both ground-cloth methods exhibited severe age-class bias, detecting late instars much more effectively than early instars, and gave lower population density estimates than the other methods. The value of the groundcloth methods as research sampling tools for S. festinus nymphs is questionable. Parameters for Taylor's power law were influenced by sampling method, sample size, and instar. Wholeplant inspection yielded parameter estimates that were most readily interpretable in light of previously reported aspects of S. festtnus. biology.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 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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