Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Contrasting role of temperature in structuring regional patterns of invasive and native pestilential stink bugs.

Abstract

Objectives: Assessment and identification of spatial structures in the distribution and abundance of invasive species is important for unraveling the underlying ecological processes. The invasive agricultural insect pest Halyomorpha halys that causes severe economic losses in the United States is currently expanding both within United States and across Europe. We examined the drivers of H. halys invasion by characterizing the distribution and abundance patterns of H. halys and native stink bugs (Chinavia hilaris and Euschistus servus) across eight different spatial scales. We then quantified the interactive and individual influences of temperature, and measures of resource availability and distance from source populations, and their relevant spatial scales. We used Moran's Eigenvector Maps based on Gabriel graph framework to quantify spatial relationships among the soybean fields in mid-Atlantic Unites States surveyed for stink bugs. Findings: Results from the multi-spatial scale, multivariate analyses showed that temperature and its interaction with resource availability and distance from source populations structures the patterns in H. halys at very broad spatial scale. H. halys abundance decreased with increasing average June temperature and distance from source population. H. halys were not recorded at fields with average June temperature higher than 23.5°C. In parts with suitable climate, high H. halys abundance was positively associated with percentage developed open area and percentage deciduous forests at 250 m scale. Broad scale patterns in native stink bugs were positively associated with increasing forest cover and, in contrast to the invasive H. halys, increasing mean July temperature. Our results identify the contrasting role of temperature in structuring regional patterns in H. halys and native stink bugs, while demonstrating its interaction with resource availability and distance from source populations for structuring H. halys patterns. Conclusion: These results help predicting the pest potential of H. halys and vulnerability of agricultural systems at various regions, given the climatic conditions, and its interaction with resource availability and distance from source populations. Monitoring and control efforts within parts of the United States and Europe with more suitable climate could focus in areas of peri-urban developments with deciduous forests and other host plants, along with efforts to reduce propagule pressure.