New Report of Chaetopsis massyla (Diptera: Ulidiidae) as a Primary Pest of Corn in Florida

Gaurav Goyal, Gregg S. Nuessly, Gary J. Steck, Dakshina R. Seal, John L. Capinera, Kenneth J. Boote


The picture-winged fly Euxesta stigmatias Loew (Diptera: Ulidiidae) has been a serious pest of sweet corn in Florida since the 1930s and had been considered the only fly infesting Florida corn. In a sweet corn variety trial to evaluate E. stigmatias resistance in 2007, adult Chaetopsis massyla (Walker) (Diptera: Ulidiidae) was reared from the ears. Choice and no-choice trials were conducted in 2007 and 2008 to determine the pest nature of C. massyla on corn. In no choice tests, C. massyla pairs were caged on uninfested corn ears in green house and field trials. In choice tests, field collected corn ears were held for fly emergence. No choice tests showed that C. massyla could infest and complete development in ears that had no previous damage. Chaetopsis massyla emerged from corn ears with and without prior infestation by other insect species in choice tests. Subsequently, C. massyla were reared from corn ears collected from locations throughout the major sweet corn growing region of southern Florida. Therefore, we present what we believe to be the first report of C. massyla as a primary pest of corn ears in Florida and in the United States of America.

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