Effects of Xylem-Sap Composition on Glassy-Winged Sharpshooter (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae) Egg Maturation on High-and Low-Quality Host Plants
Glassy-winged sharpshooters must feed as adults to produce mature eggs. Cowpea and sunflower are both readily accepted by the glassy-winged sharpshooter for feeding, but egg production on sunflower was reported to be lower than egg production on cowpea. To better understand the role of adult diet in egg production, effects of xylem-sap chemistry on glassy-winged sharpshooter egg maturation was compared for females confined to cowpea and sunflower. Females confined to cowpea consumed more xylem-sap than females held on sunflower. In response, females held on cowpea produced more eggs, had heavier bodies, and greater lipid content than females held on sunflower. Analysis of cowpea and sunflower xylem-sap found that 17 of 19 amino acids were more concentrated in cowpea xylem-sap than in sunflower xylem-sap. Thus, decreased consumption of sunflower xylem-sap was likely owing to perceived lower quality, with decreased egg production owing to a combination of decreased feeding and lower return per unit volume of xylem-sap consumed. Examination of pairwise correlation coefficients among amino acids indicated that concentrations of several amino acids within a plant species were correlated. Principal component analyses identified latent variables describing amino acid composition of xylem-sap. For females held on cowpea, egg maturation was affected by test date, volume of excreta produced, and principal components describing amino acid composition of xylem-sap. Principal component analyses aided in identifying amino acids that were positively or negatively associated with egg production, although determining causality with respect to key nutritional requirements for glassy-winged sharpshooter egg production will require additional testing.