The springtail, Sminthurus viridis (L.) (Collembola: Sminthuridae), is an important agricultural pest across southern Australia. We investigated the seasonal abundance patterns and summer diapause response of S. viridis in southeastern Australia by using field and shadehouse (a greenhouse that offers seedlings shade) experiments. Seasonal activity patterns of S. viridis were largely consistent with previous studies, with the pest active from autumn to spring. In addition, the timing and pattern of the summer-diapausing egg stage was established, with multiple generations probably producing diapause eggs. A strong relationship between soil moisture and temperature with autumn emergence also was observed. These results suggest that S. viridis autumn pest pressure can be predicted and indicate that late-season spraying strategies currently used for a sympatric agricultural pest are unlikely to be as effective against S. viridis.
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Vol. 104 • No. 2