Are Yellow Sticky Cards and Light Traps Effective on Tea Green Leafhoppers and Their Predators in Chinese Tea Plantations?
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In Chinese tea plantations, yellow sticky cards and light traps are increasingly used to control insect pests, especially the tea green leafhopper . In this study, a 16-week open-field experiment with daily weather monitoring was designed to test the responses of tea green leafhopper, parasitoids and spiders to yellow sticky cards and three light traps with different wavelengths (covered with sticky cards). An exclosure experiment was also designed to further test the influence of the three light systems (without sticky card) on the same species. The results showed that all three light emitting diode (LED) light traps (white, green and yellow) and yellow sticky cards attracted many more male adults than females during the course of the open field experiment, with less than 25% of trapped adults being females. Parasitoids and spiders were also attracted by these systems. Weather variables, especially rainfall, influenced the trapping efficiency. In the exclosure experiment, the population of leafhoppers in the yellow sticky card treatment did not decline significantly, but the number of spiders significantly decreased. The green and white light treatments without sticky cards showed a significant control of and no obvious harm to spiders. These results suggest that yellow sticky cards and light traps have limited capacity to control tea green leafhoppers. However, light, especially green light, may be a promising population control measure for tea green leafhoppers, not as killing agents in the traps, but rather as a behavioral control system.