Fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), is an important agricultural pest that is endemic to Puerto Rico and the rest of the Caribbean islands. Relatively little is known about the population movements of fall armyworm in the Caribbean and the magnitude of genetic interactions, if any, with populations from North, South, and Central America. To address this issue, a novel method involving mitochondrial haplotype ratios currently being used to study the migration of fall armyworm in North America was applied to populations in Puerto Rico. The results indicate limited interactions between Puerto Rico fall armyworm and those from Brazil or Texas but the potential for significant exchanges with populations in Florida.
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Vol. 103 • No. 2