Probing and feeding behavior of two distinct biotypes of Bemisia tabaci (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) on tomato plants

Y. X. Jiang, H. Lei, J. L. Collar, B. Martin, M. Muniz, A. Fereres

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Scopus citations


The probing and feeding behavior of 2 biotypes (B and Q) of the sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius), were monitored using the electrical penetration graph (EPG) technique on tomato, Lycopersicon esculentum (Mill) ('Riofuego'). Seven EPG waveform patterns were distinguished. B. tabaci (B biotype) showed a shorter duration of potential drop pattern (4.73 ± 0.45 s [ mean ± SE], n = 125), longer time to reach the phloem (209 ± 23.42 min, n = 22), and more complex pathway patterns than the greenhouse whitefly, Trialeurodes vaporariorum (Westwood). Some differences were observed in feeding behavior of the 2 B. tabaci biotypes (B and Q) tested. Interestingly, significant differences (P < 0.05) were found in those parameters related with phloem events', total duration of the E (pd), E (pd) 1, and E (pd) 2 (P < 0.01), as well as mean duration ore (pd) and E(pd)2. In addition, there also were significant differences in the total number oF probes (P < 0.05). The Q biotype showed fewer number of probes and a longer phloem ingestion time (pattern E(pd)2) than those from the B biotype. Hence, our results revealed a clear difference in the probing and feeding behavior between the B and the Q biotypes of B. tabaci on tomato plants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)357-366
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Economic Entomology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Bemisia tabaci
  • Biotypes
  • Electrical penetration graph
  • Probing behavior

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Insect Science


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