Cotton, Gossypium hirsutum L., bolls were sampled in commercial fields for stink bug (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) injury during 2007 and 2008 in South Carolina and Georgia. Across both years of this study, boll-injury percentages averaged 14.8 ± 0.3 (SEM). At average boll injury treatment levels of 10, 20, 30, and 50%, the percentage of samples with at least one injured boll was 82, 97, 100, and 100%, respectively. Percentage of field-sampling date combinations with average injury <10, 20, 30, and 50% was 35, 80, 95, and 99%, respectively. At the average of 14.8% boll injury or 2.9 injured bolls per 20-boll sample, 112 samples Dx = 0.1 (within 10% of the mean) were required for population estimation, compared with only 15 samples at Dx = 0.3. Using a sample size of 20 bolls, our study indicated that, at the 10% threshold and α = β = 0.2 (with 80% confidence), control was not needed when <1.03 bolls were injured. The sampling plan required continued sampling for a range of 1.03–3.8 injured bolls per 20-boll sample. Only when injury was >3.8 injured bolls per 20-boll sample was a control measure needed. Sequential sampling plans were also determined for thresholds of 20, 30, and 50% injured bolls. Sample sizes for sequential sampling plans were significantly reduced when compared with a fixed sampling plan (n = 10) for all thresholds and error rates.
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