Evaluation of Frankliniella bispinosa (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) as a Vector of the Tomato Spotted Wilt Virus in Pepper

Yolanda Avila, Julianne Stavisky, Sara Hague, Joe Funderburk, Stuart Reitz, Tim Momol


Frankliniella occidentalis is the key vector responsible for the emergence of Tomato spotted wilt virus as a global threat to agriculture. Frankliniella bispinosa is a common thrips in Florida, the Bahamas, and Bermuda, but the role of F. bispinosa in the epidemiology of the virus is not known. The purpose of this study was to determine the ability of F. bispinosa to acquire and transmit Tomato spotted wilt virus in pepper. In laboratory experiments, the number of larvae produced per F. bispinosa female was less than the number of larvae produced per F. occidentalis female. The larvae of F. bispinosa successfully acquired Tomato spotted wilt virus, although at a lower percentage than F. occidentalis. Viruliferous adults of both species transmitted the virus to pepper. Our results confirm the competence of F. bispinosa as a vector of Tomato spotted wilt virus.

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