Date of this Version
Published in Journal of Economic Entomology, 112:4 (2019), pp 1732–1740.
Stink bugs are an emerging threat to soybean (Fabales: Fabaceae) in the North Central Region of the United States. Consequently, region-specific scouting recommendations for stink bugs are needed. The aim of this study was to characterize the spatial pattern and to develop sampling plans to estimate stink bug population density in soybean fields. In 2016 and 2017, 125 fields distributed across nine states were sampled using sweep nets. Regression analyses were used to determine the effects of stink bug species [Chinavia hilaris (Say) (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) and Euschistus spp. (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae)], life stages (nymphs and adults), and field locations (edge and interior) on spatial pattern as represented by variance–mean relationships. Results showed that stink bugs were aggregated. Sequential sampling plans were developed for each combination of species, life stage, and location and for all the data combined. Results for required sample size showed that an average of 40–42 sample units (sets of 25 sweeps) would be necessary to achieve a precision of 0.25 for stink bug densities commonly encountered across the region. However, based on the observed geographic gradient of stink bug densities, more practical sample sizes (5–10 sample units) may be sufficient in states in the southeastern part of the region, whereas impractical sample sizes (>100 sample units) may be required in the northwestern part of the region. Our findings provide research-based sampling recommendations for estimating densities of these emerging pests in soybean.