BIOLOGICAL STUDIES ON THE SOUTHERN GREEN STINK BUG, Nezara viridula (L.) AND THE SMALLER STINK BUG, Piezodorus rubrofasciatus (F.) (PENTATOMIDAE: HEMIPTERA) INFESTING VEGETABLE COWPEA
The life cycle and development of the southern green stink bug, Nezara viridula (L.) and the smaller stink bug, Piezodorus rubrofasciatus (F.) was studied on vegetable cowpea, Vigna unguiculata ssp. sesquipedalis (L.) Verdcourt at Vellayani, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala. Both the pod bugs underwent five nymphal instars prior to adulthood. The developmental period of N. viridula from egg to adult extended for 22.59 ± 0.41 days. An adult female on an average laid 81.80 ± 17.76 eggs. Male and female adults lived for 32.00 ± 1.13 and 50.70 ± 1.60 days respectively. Nymphs of N. viridula emerging from the hexagonal egg mass were deep orange coloured. Later instars turned into shades of black, green with multicoloured spots. Adult N. viridula was green coloured with three white spots on the pronotum.P. rubrofasciatus completed its developmental period from egg to adult in 20.19 ± 0.20 days. The mean fecundity was 52.00 ± 8.77 eggs. The longevity of male and female adults extended for 21.50 ± 2.74 and 29.80 ± 1.80 days, respectively. P. rubrofasciatus laid hexagonal eggs in paired rows. Nymphs emerging were deep orange coloured with black head and thorax. The abdomen turned into metallic yellow shades in the later instars. Adult P. rubrofasciatus was pale green coloured with red or green band on the pronotum. This is the first report of biology of P. rubrofasciatus in vegetable cowpea.
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