The relative abundance of spiders was evaluated over two growing seasons among six large fields of cotton representing the major forms of cotton grown in New Mexico (conventional acala, Bt acala, conventional pima, and organic pima). Spiders were collected both from the foliage and from the ground surface. Forty-two genera of spiders in 19 families were identified. The most abundant spiders collected were wolf spiders, sheetweb spiders, crab spiders, ghost spiders, and meshweb weavers. Pardosa sternalis (Thorell) was the most common spider collected overall during this study. Seasonal comparisons of spider abundance between conventional and Bt cotton were not significantly different. However, significant month by variety interactions were observed for some species.

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Author notes

3Department of Economics and International Business, PO Box 30001, New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, New Mexico 88003.