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Arthropod fauna of rolled alder leaves in Washington State, United States of America (Insecta, Arachnida)

  • Eugene R. Miliczky (a1), David R. Horton (a1) and Eric LaGasa (a2)


The eastern foothills of the Cascade Range in Washington State, United States of America are west of the State's major fruit-producing region. Alders (Alnus Hill (Betulaceae)), an important floristic component of riparian communities in the Cascade Range foothills, were surveyed for leafrolling caterpillars (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) that might serve as alternate hosts for parasitoids of orchard pest leafrollers, particularly the nonnative wasp Colpoclypeus florus (Walker) (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae). Tortricid leafrollers were abundant on alder, but reared parasitoids did not include C. florus. Survey results also revealed that rolled leaves were secondarily colonised by a wide variety of predatory and phytophagous arthropods. Rolled leaves were almost 10-fold more likely to be occupied by predatory arthropods than adjacent, roll-free leaves. Phytophagous thrips and mites showed a similar preference for rolled leaves. The most abundant predaceous arthropods in the leafrolls were Anthocoris antevolens White (Hemiptera: Anthocoridae), found in 4.4% of leafrolls, and the spider Clubiona pacifica Banks (Araneae: Clubionidae), found in 8.3% of leafrolls. Both species, and several other predatory insect and spider species found in the rolled leaves, also occur in eastern Washington orchards where they contribute to biological control. Because of its frequent colonisation by beneficial arthropods, alder may prove useful in conservation biological control programs.


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Subject editor: David McCorquodale



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