Noctuidae moths occurring in grape orchards in Serra Gaúcha, Brazil and their relation to fruit-piercing
Revista Brasileira de Entomologia
Noctuidae moths occurring in grape orchards in Serra Gaúcha, Brazil and their relation to fruit-piercing. There is no study aiming to investigate if Noctuidae moths are responsible for piercing cultivated fruits in South America. This research aims to survey noctuid moths and list the species with mouth-parts (proboscis) morphology that suggest the capacity to cause damages to grape orchards in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Catches were carried out weekly from late November 2007 to
... November 2007 to late March 2008 (fructification period) using light traps and McPhail traps in three grape orchards in the region of Serra Gaúcha. The catches resulted in 187 taxa, with 149 identified at the specific level and 38 at genus level. The proboscises of representative taxa were removed and analyzed under stereomicroscope and scan electron microscope. It was verified that only Oraesia argyrosema (Hampson, 1926) and Gonodonta biarmata Guenée, 1852 show proboscis with suitable morphology for piercing rind and pulp of a grape berry. Achaea ablunaris (Guenée, 1852); Ascalapha odorata (Linnaeus, 1758); Letis mineis Geyer, 1827; Mocis latipes Hübner, 1823; Ophisma tropicalis Guenée, 1852, and Zale exhausta (Guenée, 1852) show proboscis only adapted to lacerate the pulp. The proboscis morphology of the remaining noctuid moths suggests lack of capacity to cause damage. Despite the presence of species capable of piercing grape berries, the populations of such species are very reduced and unable to cause damage of economic level.