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30 September 2022 Influence of Turfgrass Parameters on the Abundance of Arthropods in Sod Farms
Gurjit Singh, Shimat Villanassery Joseph
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Sod farms, where turfgrass is commercially produced, have a unique system, in which sod is harvested within 2 yr after planting. Understanding the turfgrass factors that influence the abundance of predators, herbivores, detritivores, and parasitoids that inhabit turfgrass paves the foundation for developing effective pest management programs. However, little is known about those factors in sod farms. The objective of the study was to determine the influence of turfgrass height, density, and thatch thickness on abundance of arthropod taxa in sod farms. The study was conducted at 18 and 10 sod field sites in 2019 and 2020, respectively. Four pitfall traps were deployed at each site. In 2019, each site was sampled in May, June, and July, whereas in 2020, each site was sampled in June and August. In 2019, the numbers of predatory heteropterans were two times greater in bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon L.) than in zoysiagrass (Zoysia spp.). The numbers of predatory mirids, Spanogonicus albofasciatus (Reuter), and carabids significantly decreased with increases in turfgrass height. In 2020, the abundance of staphylinids increased as the thatch thickness increased. The abundance of Sphenophorus spp. adults were significantly greater in bermudagrass than in zoysiagrass in 2020 and were more abundant in the denser turfgrasses in both years. The predatory arthropods were positively correlated with increased densities of cicadellids, whereas predatory mirids were positively associated with cicadellids, delphacids, and chrysomelids. These results have implications on management of arthropod pests in sod farms as abundance of beneficial arthropods are influenced by turfgrass factors.

© The Author(s) 2022. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:
Gurjit Singh and Shimat Villanassery Joseph "Influence of Turfgrass Parameters on the Abundance of Arthropods in Sod Farms," Environmental Entomology 51(6), 1191-1199, (30 September 2022).
Received: 23 April 2022; Published: 30 September 2022

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arthropod abundance
sod farms
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