Effective management of potato ‘Zebra Chip’ (ZC) disease caused by Cadidatus Liberibacter psyllaurous (syn. solanacearum) depends on the management of its insect vector insect, potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli (Sulc) (Hemiptera: Psyllidae). To elucidate the age-specific population dynamics of B. cockerelli, the life-table parameters were determined on potato, Solanum tuberosum L., under both laboratory and field conditions in the Lower Rio Grande Valley (LRGV) of Texas. Generally, survival, fecundity, and longevity of B. cockerelli were significantly greater under laboratory than under field conditions. The mortality under laboratory conditions was mainly due to natural intrinsic mortality. However, under field conditions, most (83.2%) B. cockerelli were missing, and of those that were not, they developed slower, and had shorter preoviposition period, shorter oviposition period, shorter longevity, lower fecundity, and higher mortality than those under laboratory conditions. As a result, most of the life-table parameters of B. cockerelli, including the intrinsic rate of increase, finite rate of increase, and net reproductive rate, were significantly lower in the field under the environmental conditions of the LRGV of Texas than in the laboratory. The information could help increase our understanding of the epidemiology of the ZC diseases associated with the pathogens transmitted by this insect pest.
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Vol. 103 • No. 5