Entomological Science (2008) 11, 385-390

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Alvin M. Simmons, Howard F. Harrison and Kai-Shu Ling (2008)
Forty-nine new host plant species for Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae)
Entomological Science 11 (4), 385-390
Abstract: The sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius), is a worldwide pest of numerous agricultural and ornamental crops. In addition to directly feeding on plants, it also acts as a vector of plant viruses of cultivated and uncultivated host plant species. Moreover, host plants can affect the population dynamics of whiteflies. An open-choice screening experiment was conducted with B-biotype B. tabaci on a diverse collection of crops, weeds, and other indigenous plant species. Five of the plant species were further evaluated in choice or no-choice tests in the laboratory. The results reveal 49 new reproductive host plant species for B. tabaci. This includes 11 new genera of host plants (Arenaria, Avena, Carduus, Dichondra, Glechoma, Gnaphalium, Molugo, Panicum, Parthenocissus, Trianthema, and Triticum) for this whitefly. All species that served as hosts were acceptable for feeding, oviposition, and development to the adult stage by B. tabaci. The new hosts include three cultivated crops [oats (Avena sativa L.), proso millet (Panicum miliaceum L.), and winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.)], weeds and other wild species, including 32 Ipomoea species, which are relatives of sweetpotato [I. batatas (L.) Lam.)]. Yellow nutsedge, Cyperus esculentus L., did not serve as a host for B. tabaci in either open-choice or no-choice tests. The results presented herein have implications for whitefly ecology and the numerous viruses that B. tabaci spreads to and among cultivated plants.
(The abstract is excluded from the Creative Commons licence and has been copied with permission by the publisher.)
Link to article at publishers website
Database assignments for author(s): Alvin M. Simmons, Kai-Shu Ling

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
general biology - morphology - evolution


Pest and/or beneficial records:

Beneficial Pest/Disease/Weed Crop/Product Country Quarant.


Bemisia tabaci biotype MEAM1