Submitted to: Annual Symposium of the Department of Agriculture Proc., Sri Lanka
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: December 20, 1999
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: The plant bugs, or Miridae, comprise the largest and most diverse group of true bugs. Many species are serious pests of agricultural crops, including lygus bugs and cotton fleahopper. A growing number of other species are being recognized as important predators, including members of the genera Deraeocoris and Phytocoris. In this paper we provide an overview of the progress made on the cooperative project to study the plant bugs of Sri Lanka. This research involved a review of the widely scattered literature and study of museum and field-collected specimens. Based on the literature, 118 species of plant bugs in 69 genera have been reported. Preliminary study of specimes from various sources indicated numerous new country records and several species new to science. This work will aid tropical crop specialists, as well as regulatory personnel, concerned with the identification of plant bug pests and potential biological control agents.
A taxonomic study of the plant bugs, or Miridae (Hemiptera), of Sri Lanka was initiatedin April 1998. Assistance in the survey was given by one graduate student and by parataxonomists, who have been trained in insect collection and preservation. The first part of the project involved a review of the widely scattered literature to determine what plant bugs have ebeen reported for the country. Published records eventually will be supplemented with records from specimens housed in various entomological collections and from specimens collected in field surveys. Based on the literature, 118 species of plant bugs in 69 genera have been reported from Sri Lanka. Preliminary study of museum and field-collected specimens indicated numerous new country records and several species new to science. The goal of the project is to produce a synopsis of the Sri Lankan Miridae, including an annotated checklist, identification keys, distributions, host plants, and review of economic importance.