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UC Pest Management Guidelines


Consperse stink bug adult.

Apple

Stink Bugs

Scientific Names:
Consperse stink bug: Euschistus conspersus
Conchuela: Chlorochroa ligata
Redshouldered stink bug: Thyanta pallidovirens

(Reviewed 8/06, updated 3/09)

In this Guideline:


DESCRIPTION OF THE PESTS

Stink bugs and other plant bugs occur in all of California, but only reach damaging numbers sporadically. Although they may differ in color and size, stink bugs have the same overall shield-shaped body. The consperse stink bug is the most common. Adult consperse stink bugs have gray brown to green bodies with yellow to orange legs and antennae that have darkened tips. The body and legs are covered with small black specks and the undersurface of the body varies from gray to green. Consperse stink bug eggs are laid in clusters on twigs and leaves. They are barrel-shaped, pearly white when first laid, turning pink before hatching. The conchuela is a large black stink bug with a reddish marginal border and a reddish spot in the middle of the back. Redshouldered plant bugs are green or brown stink bugs that may have a red line across the shoulder.

DAMAGE

Stink bugs damage the crop directly by feeding on fruit. Early season feeding results in dimples or irregularly depressed areas on mature fruit. If the feeding occurs after maturity there is little external evidence other than excrement, which appears as small, brown, tear-shaped drops. Internally, stink bug feeding produces white, pithy areas that turn brown when fruit is peeled. If the spots are the result of stink bug feeding, these pithy areas will be concentrated near the stem end of the fruit. If they resulted from lygus bug feeding, they may be located anywhere on the fruit surface. Adult stink bugs move from tree to tree and can puncture large numbers of fruit. If they are migrating into the orchard, fruits on trees in outside rows will show the most damage. Frequently, damage by these pests is limited to specific areas in the orchard. If the infestation is very heavy, however, the entire crop can be damaged.

MANAGEMENT

Infestations of stink bugs depend on the type of vegetation in and adjacent to the orchard. Most infestations occur in orchards with ground covers or adjacent to uncultivated areas; stink bugs move to ground covers in orchards when weeds in uncultivated areas dry. Consperse stink bug is rarely a pest in clean-cultivated orchards surrounded by cultivated lands, unless the land is planted in crops stink bugs favor: wheat, tomatoes, berries, alfalfa, or corn.

Cultural Control
Eliminate weed host plants listed above both within and adjacent to the orchard to minimize stink bug problems. Do not mow cover crops or weeds when stink bugs are present or they will move into the trees.

Organically Acceptable Methods
Cultural control is organically acceptable.

Monitoring and Treatment Decisions
Monitor for stink bugs in March or April by inspecting host plants located inside and along borders of sampling blocks. Spend about an hour checking the bases of plants for overwintered adult bugs. Favored host plants are mullein, mustard, and dock. If these are not present, bugs may be found on plantain, milkweed, mallow, morningglory, thistles, vetch, velvetgrass, breadgrass, bushberries, everlasting peas, and other broadleaf plants. If more than five bugs are found during the hour, spray the weeds with an insecticide immediately. Depending on the distribution of the bug population, a spot treatment may be adequate. If two to five bugs are found and bug damage has been experienced previously in the orchard, spraying the weeds might be advisable. If fewer than two bugs are found, resample in 7 to 10 days.

Sample for adults or damaged fruit in June and July. Take a 50-tray beating sample for each 20-acre block, taking most of the samples from border trees to locate bugs flying in from adjacent fields. If one or more bugs are collected, inspect fruit for feeding damage. Either examine fruit on the tree for the presence of bugs, excrement, or visible damage, or collect fruit from the lower half of the tree and peel it. If more than three fruits per half hour of inspection show feeding damage, spots of excrement, or active bugs, or there is one damaged fruit per 100 peeled, treatment of trees probably is required to avoid economic loss by end of harvest.

Common name Amount to use** R.E.I.+ P.H.I.+
(trade name) (conc.) (dilute) (hours) (days)

  Calculate impact of pesticide on air quality
When choosing a pesticide, consider information relating to the impact on natural enemies and honey bees and environmental impact.
 
PINK BUD to BLOOM
Note: Apply as a thorough, drenching ground spray to cover crop; use 100–300 gal water/acre.
A. FENPROPATHRIN*
  (Danitol) 2.4EC 16–21.33 fl oz 4–5.44 fl oz 24 14
  MODE OF ACTION GROUP NUMBER1: 3
  COMMENTS: Begin applications when first pest activity is noticed. Use higher rate under severe insect pressure.
   
B. DIMETHOATE E267 Label rates 48 28
  MODE OF ACTION GROUP NUMBER1: 1B
  COMMENTS: Do not apply during bloom. Harmful to beneficial mites.
   
C. FORMETANATE HYDROCHLORIDE
  (Carzol) SP 4 oz 16 days 0
  MODE OF ACTION GROUP NUMBER1: 1A
  COMMENTS: Do not apply more than 1.25 lb/acre/season. Do not apply after petal fall. See label for second application restrictions.
   
D. ENDOSULFAN*
  (Thionex) 3EC 1.33 pt 24 30
  MODE OF ACTION GROUP NUMBER1: 2A
  COMMENTS: Do not apply near bodies of water containing fish. Stink bugs may be resistant to endosulfan. Maximum of 3.5 qt/acre.
   
MAY/JUNE to PREHARVEST
Note: Apply to trees
A. FENPROPATHRIN*
  (Danitol) 2.4EC 16–21.33 fl oz 4–5.44 fl oz 24 14
  MODE OF ACTION GROUP NUMBER1: 3
  COMMENTS: Begin applications when first pest activity is noticed. Use higher rate under severe insect pressure. Disruptive of natural enemies.
   
B. DIMETHOATE Label rates 48 28
  MODE OF ACTION GROUP NUMBER1: 1B
  COMMENTS: Harmful to beneficial mites.
   
C. ENDOSULFAN*
  (Thionex) 50WP 4 lb 1 lb 4 days 30
  MODE OF ACTION GROUP NUMBER1: 2A
  COMMENTS: Do not apply near bodies of water containing fish. Stink bugs may be resistant to endosulfan. Maximum of 3.5 qt/acre.
   
** For dilute application, rate is per 100 gal water to be applied in 300-500 gal water/acre, according to label; for concentrate applications, use 80–100 gal water/acre or lower if the label allows.
+ Restricted entry interval (R.E.I.) is the number of hours (unless otherwise noted) from treatment until the treated area can be safely entered without protective clothing. Preharvest interval (P.H.I.) is the number of days from treatment to harvest. In some cases the REI exceeds the PHI. The longer of two intervals is the minimum time that must elapse before harvest.
* Permit required from county agricultural commissioner for purchase or use.
Not recommended or not on label.
1 Rotate chemicals with a different mode-of-action Group number, and do not use products with the same mode-of-action Group number more than twice per season to help prevent the development of resistance. For example, the organophosphates have a Group number of 1B; chemicals with a 1B Group number should be alternated with chemicals that have a Group number other than 1B. Mode of action Group numbers are assigned by IRAC (Insecticide Resistance Action Committee). For additional information, see their Web site at http://www.irac-online.org/.

[Precautions]

PUBLICATION

[UC Peer Reviewed]

UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines: Apple
UC ANR Publication 3432
Insects and Mites
J. L. Caprile, UC Cooperative Extension, Contra Costa County
L. R. Wunderlich, UC Cooperative Extension, El Dorado County
P. M. Vossen, UC Cooperative Extension, Sonoma and Marin counties
W. W. Coates, UC Cooperative Extension, San Benito County
H. L. Andris, UC Cooperative Extension, Fresno County
L. G. Varela, UC IPM Program, Sonoma County
W. J. Bentley, UC IPM Program, Kearney Agricultural Center, Parlier
Acknowledgment for contributions to Insects and Mites:
C. Pickel, UC IPM Program, Sutter and Yuba counties

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