Effects of photoperiod on development, survival, feeding, and oviposition of boll weevils, Anthonomus grandis grandis Boheman, were assessed under five different photophases (24, 14, 12, 10, and 0 h) at a constant 27°C temperature and 65% RH in the laboratory. Analyses of our results detected positive relationships between photoperiod and puncturing (mean numbers of oviposition and feeding punctures per day), and oviposition (oviposition punctures/oviposition feeding punctures) activities, and the proportion of squares attacked by boll weevil females. When boll weevil females developed in light:darkness cycles, they produced a significantly higher percentage of eggs developing to adulthood than those developed in 24-h light or dark conditions. In long photoperiod (24:0 and 14:10 h), the number of female progeny was significantly higher and their development time was significantly shorter than those developed in short photoperiod (0:24 and 10:14 h). Lifetime oviposition was significantly highest at 12- and 14-h photophase, lowest at 0- and 10-h photophase, and intermediate at 24 h of light. Life table calculations indicated that boll weevil populations developed in a photoperiod of 14:10 and 12:12 (L:D) h will increase an average of two-fold each generation (Ro) compared with boll weevils developed in 24:0- and 10:14-h photoperiods and 15-fold compared with those at 0:24 h. Knowledge of the photoperiod-dependent population growth potential is critical for understanding population dynamics to better develop sampling protocols and timing insecticide applications.
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