Date of this Version
Journal of Economic Entomology, 113(4), 2020, 1831–1838 doi: 10.1093/jee/toaa093
Historically, the wheat stem sawfly, Cephus cinctus Norton was a pest in spring wheat-growing regions of the northern Great Plains. However, in the 1980s, it was found infesting winter wheat fields in Montana. Infestations were first detected in western Nebraska in the 1990s, and have since spread throughout the Nebraska Panhandle. Larval damage occurs from stem-mining, but stem girdling that results in lodged stems that are not harvested results in the greatest yield losses.The biology and phenology of the wheat stem sawfly are well described in the northern portion of its range, but they are lacking in Colorado, southeast Wyoming, and Nebraska. In this study, the phenology and dispersal of the wheat stem sawfly in Nebraska winter wheat fields is described using sweep net and larval sampling. During this 2-yr study, adult activity began on May 23 and ended on June 21. Adult sex ratios were 2.32 males per female in 2014 and 0.46 males per female in 2015. Both sexes demonstrated an edge effect within the wheat fields, with greater densities near the field edge.The edge effect was stronger for male wheat stem sawfly than females. Wheat stem sawfly larval density also had an edge effect, regardless of the density of female wheat stem sawfly present.This information will be useful for developing management plans for the wheat stem sawfly in Nebraska and neighboring regions.