Windborne migration routes of newly-emerged fall armyworm from Qinling mountains-Huaihe river region, China.
The fall armyworm (FAW, Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith), invaded China in mid-December 2018; since then, it has become a great threat to Chinese agricultural production. Qinling Mountains-Huaihe River region (QM-HRR) is the transitional zone between northern and southern China, an important region for both corn and wheat production. Based on the actual occurrence of QM-HRR invaded by FAW in 2019, daily mean surface air temperature and nocturnal wind conditions at 925 hPa were examined, and migratory routes of FAW moths originated in QM-HRR were modeled by a forward-trajectory-analysis approach. The results indicated that migratory activities of FAW adults emerged in QM-HRR were initiated from late June. The moths from western QM-HRR, where has complex topographic terrain, mainly flied to Ningxia and Inner Mongolia before mid September. However, FAW moths from the eastern QM-HRR primarily engaged in high-altitude northward transport assisted by the prevailing southerly winds before mid August, and the North China Plain was identified as the main destination of FAW. Meanwhile, the migration trajectories of FAW moths had a possibility to reach the Northeast China Plain. From mid August, FAW moths in eastern QM-HRR largely migrated southward and returned to the Yangtze River Valley. This study provides detailed information on the occurrence and migration routes of FAW moths from QM-HRR and will be helpful for early warning and development of integrated pest management strategies for the control of this exotic insect pest.