Although some of the American native Vitis species and their hybrids, particularly those originated from the southeastern United States, have been known for resistance to Pierce's disease (PD), their resistant status against the glassy-winged sharp shooter [GWSS, Homalodisca coagulata (Say)], the vector transmitting PD pathogen (Xylellafastidiosa Well), has not been reported. To determine GWSS feeding preferences on different grape species/cultivars and correlations of feeding to Pierce's disease development, a survey was conducted at Florida A&M University, Tallahassee. The feeding preference of GWSS on different species/cultivars was evaluated in two different ways: 1) count the number of GWSS on different grapevines in the field; and 2) determine the feeding preference by measuring the excretion of the GWSS feeding on difference grape species/cultivars, including highly susceptible V. vinifera cultivars, native American grape species and hybrids, and muscadine grapes. Results from this study indicated that the frequency of GWSS visits on different grapevines varied among the species/cultivars investigated. For example, PD-resistant grape V. rotundifolia (muscadine grape) had significantly fewer GWSS visits than did the PD-susceptible V. vinifera grape. The frequency of GWSS visits to V. labrusca, the native American grape susceptible to PD, was intermediate between those found on V. rotundifolia and V. vinifera. Similarly, the GWSS sucked more xylem sap when they fed on PD-susceptible grapevines than on PD-resistant ones. Overall, there is a positive correlation between the GWSS visits/feeding and the status of grapevine resistance/susceptibility to Pierce's disease.
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