Curcurbita pepo subspecies delineates striped cucumber beetle (Acalymma vittatum) preference

L. Brzozowski, B. M. Leckie, J. Gardner, M. P. Hoffmann, M. Mazourek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


The striped cucumber beetle (Acalymma vittatum (F.)) is a destructive pest of cucurbit crops, and management could be improved by host plant resistance, especially in organic farming systems. However, despite the variation in striped cucumber beetle preference observed within the economically important species, Cucurbita pepo L., plant breeders and entomologists lacked a simple framework to classify and exploit these differences. This study used recent phylogenetic evidence and bioassays to organize striped cucumber beetle preference within C. pepo. Our results indicate preference contrasts between the two agriculturally relevant subspecies: C. pepo subsp. texana and C. pepo subsp. pepo. Plants of C. pepo subsp. pepo were more strongly preferred than C. pepo subsp. texana plants. This structure of beetle preference in C. pepo will allow plant breeders and entomologists to better focus research efforts on host plant non-preference to control striped cucumber beetles.

Original languageEnglish
Article number16028
JournalHorticulture Research
StatePublished - 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Jason Barry, Cornell Statistical Consulting Unit, for statistical guidance, and Claire Cekander, Michael Glos, Rubens Kanno, Kyle LaPlant, Christopher Leyen, Julian Montijo and Emily Rodekohr for assistance with experiments. This research was supported by the Towards Sustainability Foundation, the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, a U.S. Department of Agriculture, Hatch Project accession number 1000774 and by the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative Project No. 2012-51300-20006. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in the publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Nanjing Agricultural University.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science
  • Horticulture


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