Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Catchot Jr. Angus, L.

Committee Member

Cook, Donald R.

Committee Member

Golden, Bobby R.

Committee Member

Musser, Fred R.

Committee Member

Gore, Jeffrey

Other Advisors or Committee Members

Irby, John T.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access



Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Agriculture and Life Sciences


Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology and Plant Pathology


Interactions between corn earworm, Helicoverpa zea (Boddie), and soybean, Glycine max L. (Merrill), were investigated in the Mid-South to evaluate thresholds and damage levels. Field studies were conducted in both indeterminate and determinate modern cultivars to evaluate damage, critical injury levels, and soybean response to simulated corn earworm injury. Field studies were also conducted to evaluate the response of indeterminate cultivars to infestations of corn earworm. Field studies were also conducted to investigate the relationship between pyrethroid insecticide application and corn earworm oviposition in soybean. Results of field studies involving simulated corn earworm damage indicated the need for a dynamic threshold that becomes more conservative as soybean phenology progressed through the reproductive growth stages. This suggested that soybean was more tolerant to fruit loss during the earlier reproductive stages and was able to compensate for fruit loss better during this time than at later growth stages. Results of field studies involving infestations of corn earworm indicated that current thresholds are likely too liberal. This resulted in economic injury level tables being constructed based upon a range of crop values and control costs, however, a general action threshold was also recommended for indeterminate soybean in the Mid-South. Field study results investigating the relationship of pyrethroid application and corn earworm oviposition indicated that even in the presence of an insecticide, corn earworm prefers to oviposit in the upper portion of the canopy, as well as on the leaves as opposed to all other plant parts, consistent with all previous literature.