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Oak Defoliation and Population Density Relationships for the Gypsy Moth (Lepidoptera: Lymantriidae

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In 18 yr of observations on the population dynamics and defoliation of the gypsy moth, Lymantria dispar (L.), in New Jersey, percentage defoliation increased at the beginning of an outbreak, usually reached highest levels in the year before the peak population, and declined rapidly thereafter. In linear regression analyses, egg and egg massdensity explained considerable amounts of variation in subsequent defoliation; the addition of a variable for population trend (i.e., the ratio of egg masses per hectare in the present year to that in the previous year) further improved the r'. Use of a sigmoid function to model the relationship resulted in r' values of 0.65-0.67. Because variability was high at intermediate population densities, patterns of defoliation and population trend were explored further. Overall, defoliation in a given range of density was significantly higher when the trend was stable or increasing than when it was decreasing. The use of these results in making management decisions is discussed.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 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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