STINK BUG POPULATION FLUCTUATION AND CONTROL IN SOUR PASSION FRUIT ORCHARDS IN SOUTHERN BRAZIL

ABSTRACT Sour passion fruit (Passiflora edulis Sims, 1818) crops in Brazil are drawing attention due to the national production, and the increasing consumption of this fruit as fresh and processed products. However, fruit losses due to damages caused by stink bugs (Hemiptera: Coreidae) are concerning to fruit growers in southern Brazil. The objective of this study was to evaluate the population fluctuation and control of stink bugs in P. edulis crops grown in the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 crop seasons in Araquari, SC, Brazil, using natural and synthetic insecticides. The stink bug population was evaluated using the 0.25 m2 frame technique. The evaluations were carried out weekly during the two crop seasons. The species and distribution of stink bugs in the different parts of the plant were evaluated. The insecticides and rates used were: Neenmax (azadirachtin 1.0%) at 10 mL L-1; Orobor N1 (N-citric acid 1.0% + 0.20% B) at 2 mL L-1; and Decis 25 EC (deltamethrin 2.5%) at 1 mL L-1, diluted in aqueous solution. Specimens of three stink bug species where found: 86% Diactor bilineatus (Hemiptera: Coreidae); 13.5% Holhymenia histrio (Hemiptera: Coreidae), and 0.5% Nezara viridula (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae). The D. bilineatus species presented higher frequency, constancy, and dominance during the evaluated crop seasons; 64% of the stink bugs were found on fruits, 18.5% on leaves, 7.3% on floral buds, 5.8% on flowers, and 4.4% on branches. The use of azadirachtin or deltamethrin was efficient to reduce the stink bug infestation and the number of P. edulis withered fruits.