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1 February 2008 Relationships of Abscised Cotton Fruit to Boll Weevil (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) Feeding, Oviposition, and Development
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Abstract

Abscised cotton, Gossypium hirsutum L., fruit in field plots planted at different times were examined to assess adult boll weevil, Anthonomus grandis grandis Boheman (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), use of squares and bolls during 2002 and 2003 in the Lower Rio Grande Valley of Texas. Although boll abscission is not necessarily related to infestation, generally more bolls abscised than squares and abundances of fallen bolls were not related to the planting date treatments. During 2003, fallen squares were most abundant in the late-planted treatment. Although large squares (5.5–8-mm-diameter) on the plant are preferred for boll weevil oviposition, diameter of abscised squares is not a reliable measurement because of shrinkage resulting from desiccation and larval feeding. Fallen feeding-punctured squares and bolls were most abundant in late plantings but differences between fallen feeding-punctured squares versus fallen feeding-punctured bolls were found in only one treatment in 2003. During the same year, fallen oviposition-punctured squares were more numerous in the late-planted treatment than in the earlier treatments. Treatment effects were not found on numbers of oviposition-punctured bolls, but fallen oviposition-punctured squares were more common than bolls in the late-planted treatment compared with earlier treatments each year. Dead weevil eggs, larvae, and pupae inside fallen fruit were few and planting date treatment effects were not detected. Living third instars and pupae were more abundant in fallen squares of the late-planted treatment than in the earlier treatments and bolls of all three treatments. This study shows that fallen squares in late-planted cotton contribute more to adult boll weevil populations than bolls, or squares of earlier plantings.

Allan T. Showler "Relationships of Abscised Cotton Fruit to Boll Weevil (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) Feeding, Oviposition, and Development," Journal of Economic Entomology 101(1), 68-73, (1 February 2008). https://doi.org/10.1603/0022-0493(2008)101[68:ROACFT]2.0.CO;2
Received: 8 March 2007; Accepted: 23 August 2007; Published: 1 February 2008
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