Performance of Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) Fed on Six Host Plants: Potential Risks to Mid-high Latitude Crops in China

  •  Yu Chen    
  •  Jingfei Guo    
  •  Zupeng Gao    
  •  Kanglai He    
  •  Shuxiong Bai    
  •  Tiantao Zhang    
  •  Zhenying Wang    


The fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), is a polyphggous and widespread insect pest. In the study, the biological characteristics and nutritional indices of S. frugiperda fed on six crops, namely corn, sorghum, wheat, soybean, peanut, and cotton, were investigated under laboratory conditions. These crops are cultivated mainly in the mid-high latitude of China. Results showed that S. frugiperda was able to develop and reproduce on all six tested plants. Larvae reared on corn exhibited a significant shorter larval and pupal duration, higher pupal weight, and higher fecundity, which were 16.2 d, 8.9 d, 0.248 g, and 979.4 eggs per female, respectively. The host plant significantly affected relative growth, consumption, and metabolic rates, as well as other nutritional indices. Biology and nutritional indexes suggested that corn was the most suitable host. Besides, peanut, sorghum, and wheat have also been shown to be the suitable hosts for S. frugiperda. Although cotton and soybean were found to be less adequate, high larval and pupal survivors recorded on cotton and soybean leaves have indicated that damage may occur in these plants. This work reveals the damage risk of potential hosts of S. frugiperda, lays the foundation for the design of pest management strategies.

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