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Tuesday, 19 November 2002 - 4:48 PM

This presentation is part of : Ten-Minute Papers, Subsection Fb. Urban Entomology

Preference of Listronotus maculicollis larvae in five species of golf course turfgrass

Nikki Rothwell and Patricia Vittum. University of Massachusetts, Department of Entomology, Fernald Hall, Amherst, MA

Listronotus maculicollis, annual bluegrass weevil (ABW), is a pest of highly maintained turfgrass in the Northeastern United States. This insect has been observed to primarily injure Poa annua, annual bluegrass, on golf course turf; however, no empirical evidence of this phenomenon exists. Five different varieties of turfgrass were used in both field and controlled experimentation: P. annua (grown from seed in a greenhouse), creeping bentgrass variety 3way, creeping bentgrass variety L93, Kentucky bluegrass, and a Kentucky bluegrass/perennial ryegrass mixture. In 2000, the short mowed grasses (P. annua and the two creeping bentgrass varieties) contained similar numbers of larvae, but significantly fewer larvae were found in the long mowed grasses (Kentucky bluegrass and Kentucky bluegrass/perennial ryegrass mixture). The following year, we obtained comparable results, with no differences between the short mowed grasses, and the two longer mowed grasses had fewer larvae. In 2002, 52, 45 and 39 larvae were located in L93, 3W and P. annua respectively, which again shows no L. maculicollis preference between short mowed grasses. Three years of field experimentation contradicts repeated golf course superintendent observations of larval feeding damage-L. maculicollis damage is almost exclusively detected on P. annua. Controlled experiments, however, do mimic these field results; choice and no-choice tests reveal significantly more larvae in P. annua than the other four grass types. Field tests suggest that maintenance practices, such as mowing height and fertilization, appear to influence the number and location of L. maculicollis larvae.

Species 1: Coleoptera Curculionidae Listronotus maculicollis
Keywords: annual bluegrass weevil

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