Spatial and temporal relationships among catches of adult stable flies, Stomoxys calcitrans (L.), on sticky traps in eastern Nebraska were evaluated. Twenty-five alsynite sticky traps were placed in a 5 by 5 grid with ≈1.6-km intervals in a mixed agricultural environment from 2003 to 2011. Denser grids of 45–90 traps were implemented for varying lengths of time during the course of the study. More than two million stable flies were collected over 9 yr. Seasonal abundances based upon total collections from the primary grid of 25 traps were bimodal most years with population peaks in June and September or October. Individual trap catches varied greatly, both spatially and temporally. Trap catches were spatially aggregated with autocorrelation extending to ≈2 km. Synchrony among trap catches declined linearly with respect to distance between traps and differences in seasonal distribution increased asymptotically relative to distance between traps. Proximity to confined livestock facilities increased catch and proportion of catch collected later in the season. Fifteen to 20 traps were adequate for estimating stable fly populations with the standard error of the mean equal to 30% of the mean for most of the stable fly season. Early and late in the season, when mean trap catches were low, between 100 and 135 traps would be needed to maintain that level of confidence. Seasonal collection distributions from permutations of subsets of the data with fewer than 24 traps differed significantly from those of the complete grid of 25 traps, indicating that 20 or more traps may be needed to evaluate the seasonal dynamics of a stable fly population.
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Vol. 42 • No. 3