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Impact of Livestock Grazing on Abundance of Miridae and Reduviidae (Hemiptera) in Crested Wheatgrass Pastures

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Abstract:

Miridae of the genera Labops and Irbisia, collectively referred to as “black grass bugs,” can cause significant damage to wheatgrasses (Poaceae) of several genera on western North American rangeland. Another mirid in the same area, Capsus cinctus (Kolenati), causes damage to bluegrass (Poa spp.). Previous studies suggest that grazing management may reduce mirid populations on rangeland by eliminating preferred oviposition sites and reducing accumulations of litter that provide diurnal refuges for nymphs. We tested the hypothesis that grazing reduces mirid populations, along with those of Reduviidae, during a controlled grazing experiment. Densities of mirids and reduviids declined with increasing intensity of grazing, even though grazing occurred after the peak of mirid abundance each year. This suggests that declines in hemipteran densities resulted from grazing that occurred during previous years, perhaps because the most heavily grazed plots had the least plant litter. The results further confirm that grazing has the potential to control black grass bug populations, although the benefits could be potentially offset by negative impacts on beneficial insects such as reduviids.

Keywords: Capsus; Irbisia; Labops; black grass bugs; grazing management

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2008

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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