Beat Sampling Accuracy in Estimating Spruce Spider Mite (Acari: Tetranychidae) Populations and Injury on Juniper

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The use of a standardized beat sampling method for estimating spruce spider mite, Oligonychus ununguis (Jacobi) (Acari: Tetranychidae), densities on a widely used evergreen ornamental plant species, Juniperus chinensis variety ‘Sargentii’ A. Henry (Cupressaceae), was examined. There was a significant positive relationship between total spruce spider mite densities and spider mite densities from beat sampling on juniper. The slope and intercept of the relationship may be used by pest managers to predict total spider mite densities on plants from beat sample counts. Beat sampling dramatically underestimates the total number of spider mites on a foliage sample. The relationships between spruce spider mite feeding injury and spider mite density estimates from beat sampling juniper foliage and total spider mite counts on foliage were also examined. There was a significant positive relationship between spruce spider mite density as estimated from beat sampling and injury to the plants. There was a similar positive relationship between the total number of spruce spider mites and injury to the plants, suggesting that a pest manager could use beat sampling counts to estimate plant injury and related thresholds. These findings have important implications to decision-making for spruce spider mite control, especially as it relates to threshold levels and determining rates of predator releases. Further assessment of the effectiveness of beat and other sampling methods across multiple spider mite–host plant associations needs to be examined to enable pest managers to select sampling plans that are feasible and reliable.

Keywords: biological control; injury; integrated pest management; monitoring; threshold

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2004

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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