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Title: Habitat of the corn leafhopper (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae) during the dry (winter) season in Mexico
Author: Moya-Raygoza, G.
Hogenhout, S.A.
Nault, L.R.
Issue Date: 2007
Abstract: Although the corn leafhopper Dalbulus maidis (DeLong and Wolcott) is the most important vector of maize pathogens in Latin America, little is known about how and where it overwinters (passes the dry season), particularly in Mexico. The objectives of this study were (1) to monitor the abundance of D. maidis adults throughout the dry season in maize and maize-free habitats and (2) to determine where and how D. maidis adults, exposed or nonexposed to the maize pathogen Spiroplasma kunkelii Whitcomb, overwinter in a maize-free habitat. Work for the first objective was done during the two consecutive dry seasons of 1999-2000 and 2000-2001; the second objective was done during the dry seasons of 2003-2004 and 2005-2006. During the dry winter seasons, D. maidis was prevalent as long as maize was present in irrigated areas. The leafhopper was found in 52 of the 58 irrigated maize fields sampled in Mexico at the end of the dry seasons of 1999-2000 and 2000-2001. However, leafhopper adults were not found in nonirrigated maize-free habitats at high elevation during the dry winter season (February, March, and April), although leafhopper adults were prevalent on perennial wild grasses in January after maize harvest. Additional experiments revealed, however, that corn leafhopper adults, although few in number, survived the entire dry season in these nonirrigated maize-free fields. Also, no detectable difference in survival existed between leafhoppers exposed and those not exposed to S. kunkelli during the two dry seasons in the maize-free habitat. © 2007 Entomological Society of America.
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