Symposium: Insect Behavioral Ecology--'91: Introduction to The Behavioral Ecology of Immigration: The Immigration of Insects to Florida, with a Tabulation of Records Published Since 1970

J. Howard Frank, Earl D. McCoy

Abstract


A table is presented of the recent (published since 1970) records of presence of exotic insects in Florida. The table includes 271 species, 209 of which were first collected in Florida after 1970. We assumed that these insects are immigrants, and we calculated mean rates of 7.7 and 12.0 immigrations per year in the 1970s and 1980s, respectively. We judge that about 20 recent immigrants are, or could become, major pests in Florida. At least 8% of the species appear to have arrived as stowaways, and many of the actual or potential major pests are among them. Immigrant species are not equitably distributed among orders or among families within orders. Species in the orders Lepidoptera and Coleoptera are especially well-represented. By far the largest proportion of recent insect immigrants to Florida comes from the Neotropical region. Our results suggest further information that is needed to answer questions about the invasibility of Florida.

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