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3 February 2022 Population Dynamics of Eriophyid Mites and Evaluation of Different Management Practices on Timothy Grass
Galen P. Dively, Margaret E. Hartman, Ronald Ochoa
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Several species of eriophyid mites are important economic pests of timothy grass in the Mid-Atlantic United States. Feeding causes stunting, curling, and brown discoloration of leaves, and yield losses ranging up to 50%. Carbaryl is the only approved chemical control for these mites. We investigated the population dynamics of field infestations, host plant resistance, and several cultural control measures to develop a more sustainable management strategy. Seasonal phenology and overall abundance differed among timothy fields and between years, with mean peak densities ranging up to 731 eggs and 1,163 mites per 2.5 cm of leaf blade. Population differences were related to the age of the field, the prevailing temperatures, and snow cover during the fall and winter months. All varieties of timothy tested were susceptible, whereas several other forage grasses were significantly resistant to eriophyid mites as possible alternatives for replacing timothy. Fall harvesting reduced the buildup of mites during the winter but populations eventually rebounded and still reached economic densities by April. Burn-down herbicide, prescribed burning, and urea-based fertilizer treatments prior to green-up in the early spring had variable effects and may help to prevent economic losses; however, several concerns about the benefit/costs and practicality of these practices are discussed.

© The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:
Galen P. Dively, Margaret E. Hartman, and Ronald Ochoa "Population Dynamics of Eriophyid Mites and Evaluation of Different Management Practices on Timothy Grass," Journal of Economic Entomology 115(2), 602-610, (3 February 2022).
Received: 9 November 2021; Accepted: 3 January 2022; Published: 3 February 2022

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