The insect family Cicadellidae includes economically important vectors of plant pathogens. Hishimonus sellatus (Uhler) transmits jujube witches'-broom (JWB). Currently, H. sellatus and Hishimonus lamellatus Cai et Kuoh are observed to co-occur at the same locality on jujube. H. lamellatus is now suspected to be a JWB vector. As such, correct identification of Hishimonus species present in vineyards is essential for epidemiological surveys. However, traditional identification of Hishimonus by morphology is limited to the adult male. We provide a comprehensive description of morphological and molecular tools for discriminating between H. sellatus and H. lamellatus, for use in identification and monitoring of the two Hishimonus species and studies of their plant hosts. A rapid and inexpensive method is introduced to identify H. sellatus and H. lamellatus occurring in jujube orchards. This method is based on amplification of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) gene, using PCR with multiplexed, species-specific primers. The reliability of this new method has been tested on different populations from different sites in Beijing region of China.
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Vol. 108 • No. 5