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Ear Resistance of Sweet Corn Populations to Sesamia nonagrioides (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) and Ostrinia nubilalis (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae)

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Corn borers are the main pests of maize, Zea mays L., in temperate areas. In Spain and other Mediterranean countries, the principal corn borer is Sesamia nonagrioides Lefebvre, although the European corn borer, Ostrinia nubilalis (Hübner), is also an important pest in sweet corn. The objectives of this work were to study resistance to attack of both species in sweet corn populations and to compare the mechanisms of resistance. Twenty sweet corn populations and 1 field corn population were evaluated for ear resistance under artificial infestation, with eggs of S. nonagrioides and O. nubilalis, under natural conditions, and protected with an insecticide, in 1996 and 1997. There were significant differences between years and the interactions genotype × year and treatment × year were significant for most traits. In 1996, damage produced by S. nonagrioides was greater than damage produced by O. nubilalis. In 1997, attack of O. nubilalis was most important. The insecticide did not protect the crop in 1996, and protection was low in 1997. The field corn synthetic cultivar ‘BSCB1(R)C11’, and the sweet corn synthetic cultivars ‘NE-HY-13A(S)C1’, ‘NE-HY-13B(S)C1’, and ‘AS11’ were resistant to attack by both species in both years. Stowell’s ‘W. Evergreen’ and ‘EPS11’ were resistant to O. nubilalis and showed some resistance to S. nonagrioides. All resistant populations have field corn in their pedigree. Field corn seemed to be more resistant than sweet corn, and mechanisms of resistance to both pests were not entirely independent.

Keywords: Ostrinia nubilalis; Sesamia nonagrioides; plant resistance; sweet corn

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 1999

More about this publication?
  • 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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