Behavior of and Crop Injury Induced by Native and Exotic Stink Bugs in Mid-Atlantic Soybean

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Virginia Tech

Cage studies were performed to determine if the current thresholds for stink bugs in soybean (one bug per 0.3 row m) need to be adjusted based on current soybean production practices and species present. Several soybean development stages were infested by two native stink bug species for three weeks using small cages in a field of double crop soybean at sites in Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware during 2007-2009. Large field cages were infested by an introduced species for two weeks in 2010-2011. Results showed that Euschistus servus Say and Acrosternum hilare Say adults or nymphs did not cause different levels of injury to soybean seed quality or effects on yield. Both A. hilare and the introduced Halyomorpha halys Stål injured soybean seed in a similar fashion at threshold-level densities. Full flowering R2 stage soybean were least affected by stink bug feeding, and full pod and beginning seed R4-R5 stage soybean were slightly more sensitive to injury than R6 although not at the Maryland 2011 site. Several sites had increased seed injury and decreased yield at threshold density populations.

Finally, visual observations of stink bug vertical distribution inside soybean canopies were taken several times per day and compared with ambient and within-canopy temperature and relative humidity. Results indicated that these conditions did not influence the percentage of stink bugs below the top 38 cm sweep net intercept zone. In both years of observations, between 15 and 20% of stink bugs were observed below the 38 cm sweep net zone.

soybean, thresholds, vertical distribution, Temperature, relative humidity, sweep net, Halyomorpha halys, Acrosternum hilare (Chinavia hilaris)