David T. Handley, James E. Pollard
Tarnished plant bugs (Lygus spp.) are serious pests of strawberries in North America, causing a severe malformation of the receptacle referred to as "apical seediness" or "buttoning". Light and scanning electron microscopy were used to assess feeding behavior of tarnished plant bug on strawberries and to determine the nature of the characteristic injury. When tarnished plant bugs fed upon early fruit development stages the primary feeding sites were developing achenes. When feeding on fruit in later stages of development, feeding sites changed from the achenes to receptacle tissue, although these sites were usually close to an achene. The "buttoning" malformation of the receptacle most commonly associated with tarnished plant bug is most likely the result of the destruction of achenes during anthesis to petal fall. Field studies indicate that approximately 50% of achenes are destroyed when the characteristic injury is observed. Levels of achene injury on strawberries varied among cultivars, suggesting that preferences for certain plant characteristics may modify the insects' behavior.
Handley, David T. and Pollard, James E. (1993). TARNISHED PLANT BUG (LYGUS LINEOLARIS) BEHAVIOR ON CULTIVATED STRAWBERRIES. Acta Hortic. 348, 463-468
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.1993.348.95

Acta Horticulturae