Sweep-nets and pitfall traps were used to examine the distribution and dynamics of predominant predators and pests in turfgrass foliage in parks, golf courses and suburban/rural landscapes in 1991 and 1992. Araneae, Formicidae, and Coccinellidae were the most abundant predators in the sweeps, while Araneae, Formicidae, and) Carabidae were the most abundant predators in the pitfall traps. In both years, Araneae comprised over 60% of the total predators in the sweep samples. Formicidae (>70%) and Araneae (13–19%) were the most abundant arthropod predators in the pitfall samples. Cicadellidae, Chrysomelidae, and Orthoptera accounted for over 96% of the prey in the sweep samples, while Cicadellidae, Orthoptera (grasshoppers and crickets), and Aphididae comprised over 90% of the prey in the pitfall samples. Abundance of predators and prey, and prey / predator ratios fluctuated with site, date, and distance from the trees. During the season, high prey / predator ratios usually preceded peak prey abundance in the sweep samples. Predators usually were more prevalent in sweep samples closer to tree borders, while prey populations tended to be higher at distances further from the tree borders. These results suggest that tree borders provide food, shelter, and refuge for predators during periods of environmental stress.
2 Use of trade names does not imply endorsement of products named nor criticism of similar ones not mentioned.
3 Research Entomologist.
4 Extension Entomologist, Department of Entomology, 212 Plant Industry Building, East Campus, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, 68583-0816 U.S.A.