Podsucking bugs

Podsucking bugs (PSB) are major pests of all summer pulses except peanuts.

Scientific name

Podsucking bugs include:

Nezara viridula (green vegetable bug)
Piezodorus oceanicus (redbanded shield bug)
Dictyotus caenosus (brown shield bug)
Riptortus serripes and Melanocanthus scutellaris (brown bean bugs)

Description

Green vegetable bugs (GVB) are the most common species, but others can predominate or contribute to overall PSB pressure.

Brown bean bugs (large and small) are as damaging as GVB.

Redbanded shield bug and the brown shield bug only do ¾ of the damage of GVB, but are more difficult to control.

May be confused with

Beneficial species include:

  • spined predatory shield bug (Oechalia sp.)
  • glossy shield bug (Cermatulus sp.).

Damage

They can infest crops from flowering onwards, but crops are at greatest risk from early podfill to late pod ripening:

  • at early podfill, they can potentially reduce yield, but crops are often able to compensate
  • at mid to late podfill, they have a severe impact on seed quality and PSB thresholds are therefore very low.

More information