Scirpophaga incertulas (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) is autochthonous and monophagous on rice, Oryza spp., which favors the development of a physiological time model using degree-days (°C) to establish a well defined window during which adults will be present in fields. Model development of S. incertulas adult flight phenology used climatic data and historical field observations of S. incertulas from 1962 through 1988. Analysis of variance was used to evaluate 5,203 prospective models with starting dates ranging from 1 January (day 1) to 30 April (day 121) and base temperatures ranging from −3 through 18.5°C. From six candidate models, which shared the lowest standard deviation of prediction error, a model with a base temperature of 10°C starting on 19 January was selected for validation. Validation with linear regression evaluated the differences between predicted and observed events and showed the model consistently predicted phenological events of 10 to 90% cumulative flight activity within a 3.5-d prediction interval regarded as acceptable for pest management decision making. The degree-day phenology model developed here is expected to find field application in Guandong Province. Expansion to other areas of rice production will require field validation. We expect the degree-day characterization of the activity period will remain essentially intact, but the start day may vary based on climate and geographic location. The development and validation of the phenology model of the S. incertulas by using procedures originally developed for pecan nut casebearer, Acrobasis nuxvorella Neunzig, shows the fungibility of this approach to developing prediction models for other insects.
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Vol. 98 • No. 4