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Arboriculture & Urban Forestry Online
Volume 45, Issue 5 — September 2019

A Survey of Key Arthropod Pests on Common Southeastern Street Trees

Steven D. Frank

Abstract: Cities contain dozens of street tree species each with multiple arthropod pests. Developing and implementing integrated pest management (IPM) tactics, such as scouting protocols and thresholds, for all of them is untenable. A survey of university research and extension personnel and tree care professionals was conducted as a first step in identifying key pests of common street tree genera in the Southern United States. The survey allowed respondents to rate seven pest groups from 0 (not pests) to 3 (very important or damaging) for each of ten tree genera. The categories were sucking insects on bark, sucking insects on leaves, defoliators and leafminers, leaf and stem gall forming arthropods, trunk and twig borers and bark beetles, and mites. Respondents could also identify important pest species within categories. Some tree genera, like Quercus and Acer, have many important pests in multiple categories. Other genera like Liriodendron, Platanus, and Lagerstroemia have only one or two key pests. Bark sucking insects were the highest ranked pests of Acer spp. Defoliators, primarily caterpillars, were ranked highest on Quercus spp. followed closely by leaf and stem gallers, leaf suckers, and bark suckers. All pest groups were rated below 1 on Zelkova spp. Identifying key pests on key tree genera could help researchers prioritize IPM development and help tree care professionals prioritize their training and IPM implementation. Recommendations for future surveys include having more respondents and tree taxa represented and identifying trees to species within large genera, such as Acer and Quercus.

Keywords: A Survey of Key Arthropod Pests on Common Southeastern Street Trees

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