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1 August 2000 Effects of Surface Wax Variation in Pisum sativum on Herbivorous and Entomophagous Insects in the Field
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Abstract

Seven accessions or varieties of cultivated pea Pisum sativum L. varying in surface waxbloom characteristics were grown in replicated small plots (1 m2) for two seasons to monitor natural infestations of insect herbivores and abundance of predatory insects. Waxbloom was quantified on the basis of the amount of waxes extractable from leaf surfaces, densities of wax crystals visible with scanning electron microscopy, and visual appearance. During each season, pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum (Harris) (Homoptera: Aphidae), densities per plant were significantly lower on peas with reduced surface waxbloom as compared with peas with standard or ‘normal’ surface waxbloom. This difference was greatest between two near-isolines of peas differing in expression of a mutation that reduces surface waxes. Although reduced-waxbloom plants had lower end-of-season above ground biomass and vine lengths, including these variables as covariates did not affect the significance of the waxbloom effects on aphid densities. Damage to leaves and stipules by the pea leaf weevil Sitona lineatus (L.) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) was greater on reduced-waxbloom peas than normal-waxbloom peas. Thus, as occurs in other crops, reduced waxbloom in peas is associated with lower natural infestations of an aphid, but also with increased susceptibility to a folivorous beetle. Populations of predatory coccinellids did not differ consistently between years on reduced-waxbloom versus normal-waxbloom peas, failing to support a hypothesis that predator populations are higher on reduced waxbloom peas, contributing to the lower aphid populations on these plants.

C. White and S. D. Eigenbrode "Effects of Surface Wax Variation in Pisum sativum on Herbivorous and Entomophagous Insects in the Field," Environmental Entomology 29(4), (1 August 2000). https://doi.org/10.1603/0046-225X-29.4.773
Received: 27 August 1999; Accepted: 1 May 2000; Published: 1 August 2000
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