The Effects of Sun, Shade, and Predation on Azalea Lace Bug Populations in Containerized Azaleas

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  • 1 Department of Entomology, 114 Long Hall, P.O. Box 340365, Clemson, SC 29631-0365.

The effects of sun and shade in a small monocultural nursery-like environment and the effect of natural enemies on the population density of azalea lace bugs (Stephanitis pyrioides Scott) on azaleas (Rhododendron L.) in the nursery environment were assessed. A comparison of sun and shade treatments for total number of azalea lace bug eggs collected and eclosed revealed no significant (P < 0.05) differences. Stippling damage did not differ significantly between sun and shade treatments. Therefore, lace bug oviposition or eclosion were not affected by sun or shade. Arthropods collected from 5 weeks of beat samples were divided into four feeding guilds: predator-parasitoid (eight families), chelicerates (six families), chewing herbivores (two families), and piercing-sucking herbivores (nine families). Guilds were not significantly different between sun and shade treatments. In the small monocultures designed for this experiment, the 4 guilds do not appear to show preference for sun or shade habitats. No significant differences in azalea lace bug populations between caged and uncaged azalea cuttings in the nursery environment indicate there were no consequential effects of predation or parasitism on egg eclosion or subsequent instars in the first generation.

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