Population Parameters of Melon Thrips, Thrips palmi Karny (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) on Six Vegetable Crops Grown Under Reflective and Colored Shading Nets

Monday, March 14, 2016: 3:51 PM
Governor's Room I (Sheraton Raleigh Hotel)
M Razzak , Tropical Research and Education Center, Univeristy of Florida, Homestead, FL
Dakshina Seal , Entomology and Nematology, University of Florida, Homestead, FL
Catherine Sabines , TREC, Entomology and Nematology, Homestead, FL
Abstract: Melon thrips, Thrips palmi Karny, is an invasive insect pest of various vegetables, ornamentals and fruits in the South Florida. It poses serious threat to growers owing to their short generation time, high reproductive success, and less susceptibility to insecticides. Their harmful nature can be revealed due to their direct feeding and oviposition on leaves and fruits rendering unmarketable yield of host crops. Calendar application of broad spectrum insecticides are ineffective to combat this pest. Adoption of integrated pest management tactics (IPM) should be addressed to encounter melon thrips. This study focuses on the population increase of melon thrips on squash, cucumber, pepper, tomato, bean and eggplant grown inside black, red, white, pearl and metalized reflective screen boxes. Our preliminary data showed significant difference in the population abundance of melon thrips adults and larvae in various colored screen boxes irrespective of the crop types.  In all boxes, melon thrips infestation was observed on eggplants first followed by other crops. We hypothesized that our findings will be helpful to manage melon thrips in greenhouses and fields by using appropriate color shade clothes and ground cover, respectively.
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