Effect of cover crops in olive groves on Cicadomorpha communities

  • Antonio J. Carpio 1 University of Córdoba, Campus de Rabanales, Dept. of Zoology. 14071 Córdoba. 2 Instituto de Investigación en Recursos Cinegéticos, IREC (UCLM-CSIC-JCCM). Ronda Toledo 12, 13071 Ciudad Real.
  • Marta Solana University of Córdoba, Campus de Rabanales, Dept. of Zoology. 14071 Córdoba
  • Francisco S. Tortosa University of Córdoba, Campus de Rabanales, Dept. of Zoology. 14071 Córdoba
  • Jesús Castro University of Vigo, Dept. of Ecology and Animal Biology. 36310 Vigo
Keywords: Auchenorrhyncha, bare ground, ground cover, xylem-fluid feeder insects, sharpshooters


Aim of study: To identify the environmental variables that affect the Cicadomorpha communities and the role played by cover crops in olive groves by comparing olive orchards with cover crop to those with bare ground.

Area of study: Córdoba, Spain.

Material and methods: Two study plots, one with cover crop and the other with bare ground, were delimited in three areas of olives orchards. Three passive samplings (May, June and July) were performed in each study plot to estimate the abundance and the species richness of potential Cicadomorphas vectors of Xylella fastidiosa. In each sampling, eight yellow sticky traps (22 × 35 cm) were randomly distributed in each study plot (n = 144 traps).

Main results: The Cicadomorpha communities were mainly affected by landscape variables (such as the total surface and the distance to remnants of natural vegetation) and environmental variables (such as the temperature, moisture or ETo), whereas cover crops played a secondary role in the abundance of the Cicadomorpha.

Research highlights: The results of the study suggest that Cicadomorpha richness and abundance depend on the structural complexity provided by cover crops (positive effect) and live hedges (negative effect), which may be owing to the higher food abundance and shelter when cover crops are present, whereas higher insect predation may occur close to hedges, probably owing to insectivorous song birds.


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How to Cite
Carpio, A. J., Solana, M., Tortosa, F. S., & Castro, J. (2020). Effect of cover crops in olive groves on Cicadomorpha communities. Spanish Journal of Agricultural Research, 18(2), e0303. https://doi.org/10.5424/sjar/2020182-15991
Agricultural environment and ecology