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Document Type

Peer-Review Article

Abstract

The Saratoga spittlebug, Aphrophora saratogensis (Fitch), is a destructive pest of young planted pines in the Lake States. The adults injure the pines by feeding on the sap of branches. However, nymphs feed on the sap of alternate host plants, which include many herbs and woody plants on the forest floor. Our studies show that the time of the eclosion and shortly thereafter is one of the most vulnerable periods in the insect's life cycle. During this period the nymphs must free themselves from the eggs that are on pine buds, vacate the pines, search out suitable host plants on the forest floor, initiate feeding, and cover themselves with masses of spittle. And they must do this before they desiccate (Ewan, 1961), starve, or are captured by predators.

As part of a survival study we wanted to observe the nymphs at eclosion because their emergence and behavior pattern at that time would certainly affect their survival. In the Lake States area eclosion occurs from early April to late May, a period when weather varies greatly from cool and wet to warm and dry. Reported is the nymphal eclosion pattern during the peak of the eclosion periods in 1969 and 1970.

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Entomology Commons

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