Dispersal of Bactericera cockerelli (Hemiptera: Triozidae) in relation to phenology of Lycium barbarum (Solanaceae)


  • William Rodney Cooper USDA-ARS-Yakima Agricultural Research Laboratory
  • David R. Horton USDA-ARS-Yakima Agricultural Research Laboratory
  • Jenita Thinakaran Karunya Institute of Technology and Sciences School of Agriculture and Biosciences Karunya Nagar, Coimbatore
  • Alexander V. Karasev University of Idaho Department of Plant, Soil, and Entomological Sciences 875 Perimeter Drive MS 2339 Moscow, ID 83844


potato psyllid, potato, Bactericera cockerelli, matrimony vine, goji berry


Bactericera cockerelli (Šulc) (Hemiptera: Triozidae) is a key pest of potato (Solanum tuberosum) and tomato (S. lycopersicum) in western North America.  Native Lycium (Solanales: Solanaceae) in the southwestern U.S. have been known since the early 1900s to support populations of B. cockerelli.  These shrubs are adapted to survive arid habitats by entering a summer dormancy characterized by partial or complete defoliation.  Summer leaf fall by native Lycium in the southwestern U.S. triggers the dispersal of B. cockerelli to new seasonally available hosts including potato.  Recently, B. cockerelli in the Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon, and Idaho) was found to occur on a non-native Lycium known as matrimony vine.  Monitoring of matrimony vine at several locations in previous years suggested qualitatively that this non-native shrub in the Pacific Northwest also entered a summer dormancy with effects on psyllids populations.  Our study had three principal objectives: 1) examine the genetic and morphological diversity of matrimony vine in potato growing regions of the Pacific Northwest, 2) document when and under what conditions matrimony vine enters summer dormancy, and 3) determine whether summer leaf fall is associated with dispersal of B. cockerelli from these plants.  We report that “matrimony vine” in Washington State includes at least two morphologically distinct varieties of a single non-native species, L. barbarum.  Like the native Lycium species in the desert southwestern U.S., matrimony vine in Washington entered a period of summer dormancy in response to low soil moisture, and the onset of summer dormancy was associated with dispersal of B. cockerelli from the matrimony vine host, with potato being a potential destination for some of those dispersing psyllids.


Ackerman, T. L., Romney, E. M., Wallace, A., and Kinnear, J. E. 1980. Phenology of desert shrubs in southern Nye County, Nevada. Great Basin Naturalist Memoirs, 4: 4-23.

Altschul, S. F., Gish, W., Miller, W., Myers, E. W., and Lipman, D. J. 1990. Basic local alignment search tool. Journal of Molecular Biology, 215: 4003-410.

Bean, W. J. 1973. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in the British Isles, Volume 2. St. Martin’s Press, New York.

Chen, S., Yao, H., Han, J., Liu, C., Song, J., Shi, L., Zhu, Y., Ma, X, Gao, T., Pang, X., Luo, K., Li, Y., Li, X., Jia, X., Lin, Y., and Leon, C. 2010. Validation of the ITS2 region as a novel

DNA barcode for identifying medicinal plant species. PLoS One, 5: e8613.

Chiang-Vabrera, Fernando. 1981. A taxonomic study of the North America species of Lycium (Solanaceae). Ph.D (thesis), University of Texas. Austin, TX.

Cooper, W. R., Horton, D. R., Miliczky, E., Wohleb, C. H., and Waters, T. D. 2019a. The weed link in zebra chip epidemiology: Suitability of non-crop Solanaceae and Convolvulaceae to potato psyllid and “Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum”. American Journal of Potato Research, in press.

Cooper, W. R., Horton, D. R., Wildung, M. R., Jensen, A. S., Thinakaran, J., Rendon, D., Nottingham, L. B., Beers, E. H., Wohleb, C. H., Hall, D. G., and Stelinski, L. L. 2019b. Host and non-host “whistle-stops” for psyllids: Molecular gut content analysis by high-throughput sequencings reveals landscape-level movements of Psylloidea (Hemiptera). Environmental Entomology, in press.

Cooper, W. R., Horton, D. R., Miliczky, E., Wohleb, C. H., and Waters, T. D. 2019c. The weed link in zebra chip epidemiology. Potato Progress, in press.

Crawford, D. L. 1914. A monograph of the jumping plant-lice or Psyllidae of the new world. US Natural History Museum Bulletin 85, 18 pp.

Essig, E. O. 1917. The tomato and laurel psyllids. Journal of Economic Entomology, 10: 433-444.

Fu, Z., Meier, A. R., Epstein, B., Bergland, A. O., Castillo-Carrillo, C. I., Cooper, W. R., Crowder, D. W., Horton, D. R., Jensen, A. S., Kelley, J. L., Rashed, A., Reitz, S. T., Rondon, S. I., Thinakaran, J., Wenninger, E. J., Wohleb, C. H., Snyder, W. E. XXXX. Wolbachia drives gene flow between newly-sympatric vector populations. Molecular Ecology, V: P

Hanley, T. A. and Brady, W. W. 1977. Seasonal fluctuations in nutrient content of feral burro forages, lower Colorado River Valley, Arizona. Journal of Range Management, 30: 370-373.

Hansen, A. K., Trumble,, J. T., Stouthamer R., Paine, T. D. 2008. New Huanglongbing (HLB) Candidatus species, "Ca. Liberibacter psyllarous" found to infect tomato and potato is vectored by the psyllid Bactericera cockerelli. Applied Environmental Microbiology, 73: 7531-7535.

Hitchcock, C. L. 1932. A monographic study of the genus Lycium of the western hemisphere. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden, 19: 179-374.

Horton, D. R., Burts, E. C., Unruh, T. R., Krysan, J. L., Coop, L. B., and Croft, B. A.

Intraorchard changes in distribution of winterform pear psylla (Homptera; Psyllidae) associated with leaf fall in pear. Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 86: 599-608.

Horton, D. R., Burts, E. C., Unruh, T. R., Krysan, J. L., Coop, L. B., and Croft, B. A.

Phenology of fall dispersal by winterform pear psylla (Homoptera: Psyllidae) in relation to leaf fall and weather. Canadian Entomologist, 126: 111-120.

Horton, D. R., Cooper, W. R., Munyaneza, J. E., Swisher, K. D., Echegaray, E. R., Murphy, A. F., Rondon, S. I., Wohleb, C. H., Waters, T. D., and Jensen, A. S. 2015. A new problem and old questions: Potato psyllid in the Pacific Northwest. American Entomologist, 61, 234-244.

Horton, D. R., Thinakaran, T., Cooper, W. R., Munyaneza, J. E., Wohleb, C. H., Waters, T. D., Snyder, W. E., Fu, Z., Crowder, D. W., and Jensen, A. S. 2016. Matrimony vine and potato psyllid in the Pacific Northwest: A worrisome marriage? Potato Progress, XVI: 14, 12 pp.

Kaur, N., Cooper, W. R., Duringer, J. M., Badillo-Vargas, I. E., Esparza-Diaz, G., Rashed, A., and Horton, D. R. 2018. Survival and development of potato psyllid (Hemitpera: Triozidae) on Convolvulaceae: Effects of a plant-fungus symbiosis (Periglandula). Plos One, 13: e0201506.

Kearse, M., Oir, R., Willson, A., Stones-Havas, S., Cheung, M., Sturrock, S., Buxton, S., Cooper, A., Markowitz, S., Duran, C., and Thierer, T. 2012. Geneious Basic: an integtated and extendable desktop software platform for the organization and analysis of sequence data. Bioinformatics, 28: 1647-1649

Knowlton, G. F., and Thomas W. L. 1934. Host plants of the potato psyllid. Journal of Economic Entomology, 27: 547.

Levin, R. A., and Miller, J. S. 2005. Relationships within tribe Lycieae (Solanaceae): Paraphyly of Lycium and multiple origins of gender dimorphism. American Journal of Botany, 92: 2044-2053.

Munyaneza, J. E. 2012. Zebra chip disease of potato: Biology, epidemiology, and management. American Journal of Potato Research, 89: 329-350.

Murphy, A.F., Rondon, S.I., and Jensen, A.S. 2013. First report of potato psyllids, Bactericera cockerelli, overwintering in the Pacific northwest. American Journal of Potato Research, 90: 294–296.

Plesch, D. J. 1947. The potato psyllid Paratrioza cockerelli (Sulc), its biology and control. Montana Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin, 446: 95.

Romney, V. E. 1939. Breeding areas of the tomato psyllid, Paratrioza cockerelli (Sulc). Proceedings of the Utah Academy of Science, 12: 233-239.

Swisher, K. D., Munyaneza, J. E., and Crosslin, J. M. 2012. High resolution melting analysis of the cytochrome oxidase I gene identifies three haplotypes of the potato psyllid in the United States. Environmental Entomology, 41: 1019-1028.

Thinakaran, J., Horton, D. R., Cooper, W. R., Jensen, A. S., Wohleb, C. H., Dahan, J., Mustafa, T., Karasev, A. V., and Munyaneza, J. E. 2017. Association of potato psyllid (Bactericera cockerelli; Hemiptera: Triozidae) with Lycium spp. (Solanaceae) in potato growing regions of Washington, Idaho, and Oregon. American Journal of Potato Research, 94: 490-499.

Wallis, R. L. 1955. Ecological studies on the potato psyllid as a pest of potatoes. USDA Technical Bulletin No. 1107.

Yu, J., Xue, J. H., and Zhou, S. L. 2011. New universal matK primers for DNA barcoding angiosperms. Journal of Systematics and Evolutions, 49: 176-181.

Zhang, Y. P., Uyemoto, J. K., and Kirkpatrick, B. C. 1998. A small-scale procedure for extracting nucleic acids from woody plants infected with various phytopathogens for PCR assay. Journal of Virology Methods, 71: 45-50.