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Title: Habitat, body size and reproduction of the leafhopper, Dalbulus elimatus (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae), during the winter dry season
Author: Moya-Raygoza, G.
Urias, A.M.
Uribe-Mu, C.A.
Issue Date: 2012
Abstract: Although the Mexican corn leafhopper Dalbulus elimatus (Ball) is an important vector of maize pathogens, little is known about its biology in natural conditions, particularly about its overwintering habitats. Winter populations are a source of infestation of crops and are responsible for efficient distribution of offspring in the new habitat that in this case is maize cultivated in the rainy season (JunOct). This study was conducted in the habitats were D. elimatus adults have green food available during the Mexican winter (dry) season (Nov May) in central Mexico, such as on senescent maize, green wild grasses that grow on the edges of maize fields, and volunteer maize and maize seedlings. Dalbulus elimatus adults were found in Nov on senescent maize, in Dec on green wild grasses, and in Apr on volunteer maize. These results suggest that adults can overwinter locally. Moreover, a sudden appearance of D. elimatus adults occurred in Jul when maize was planted, at the onset of the rainy season. These immigrant adults are mainly females that exhibit larger body size (wing length and head width) and carry higher numbers of mature eggs than females collected during the winter season.
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