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Taxonomy, Biology, Ecology and

Management of Rice Black Bug,

Scotinophara sorsogonensis Barrion
et. al. (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae)

Orly Adona Calcetas

MS Entomology
Taxonomy & Systematics
Department of Agriculture
Regional Crop Protection Center-IVA & B
(049) 536-1905
Lecture Outline

Part I Taxonomy, morphology, biogeography and

introduction to different species of scales.

Part II Biology and Ecology of S. sorsogonensis (Life

history, damage symptoms etc.

Part III Integrated Management of S. sorsogonensis

Part I Taxonomy, Systematics and
Biogeography of Rice Black Bug
Taxonomy: is the theory and practice of describing the diversity
of organisms and the arrangement of these organisms into
classifications. (Key word: Identification)

Alpha (morphology), Beta (DNA), Gamma (Phylogenetics)

Systematics: a branch of biology responsible for

recognizing, comparing, classifying, and naming the
millions of different sorts of organism that exist.

Taxonomy and Systematics are the most

basic of the science of Biology
Photos of Rice Black Bug


Order: Hemiptera
Suborder : Heteroptera
Family: Pentatomidae
Subfamily: Podopinae
Tribe: Podopini
Genus: Scotinophara Stal 1867*
No. of Species: before = 41 species
now = 60 - 71 species
Common Names:
Rice black bug,
Malaysian black bug,
Node-feeding black bug
Japanese black bug
Phylogenetic Tree of Hemiptera

I. Old Classification
Class Insecta

Hemiptera Homoptera

II. New Classification


Gillot, 2005
Species of Rice Black Bug Recorded
in the Philippines (Barrion et. al.2007): Before
1) S. serrata (Vollenhoven, 1863), the first reported RBB from
Palawan Island, Philippines (Distant, 1902; Banks, 1909)
largest species of RBB in the Philippines.
2) S. tarsalis (Vollenhoven, 1863) in Los Baos, Laguna
smallest species of RBB in the Philippines.
3) S. coarctata (Fabricius, 1798) Palawan, phytophagous and
most destructive and invasive in the Philippines.
4) S. latiuscula Breddin 1900 Siniloan, Los Banos, Calauan
5) S. lurida (Burmeister, 1834)
6) S. ochracea (Distant, 1901)

Of the 6 species, S. coarctata and S. latiuscula damaged the

rice plant in Philippines.
Species of RBB Recorded in the Philippines
(Barrion et. al.): Now (25 species)

1. S. agusanortica - Barrion 11. S. mlanga - Barrion

2. S. alegria - Barrion 12. S. molavica BPBM, Hawaii
3. S. arkwata IRRI, Barrion 13. S. pirurotonga - Barrion
4. S. ilonga Barrion & R.C. Joshi 14. S. pseudoserrata BPBM, Hawaii
5. S. kabangkalanensis Phil Rice 15. S. putikanica - Barrion
6. S. kalinga - IRRI 16. S. sorsogonensis Barrion et.al
7. S. landangica - Barrion 17. S. tantanganica - Barrion
8. S. luzonica - IRRI 18. S. trifurcata G. Estoy
9. S. maguindanaoana - Barrion 19. S. zamboanga C.G. De Mayo
10.S. midsayapensis - Barrion
Facts and Figures

Rice is a staple food of almost 75% of the worlds population.

There are 1,400 species of rice feeding invertebrates of which 25
are major and minor pests of rice in tropical Asia.
Rice black bug is one of the most cryptic and invasive pest species
in the country.
Biogeography of Rice Black Bug

1902 - Philippines
1903 Indonesia
1918 West Malaysia
1933 Thailand
1940 Sri Lanka
1967 East Malaysia
1975 Vietnam
1977 India
1979 Philippines*
1980 - Senegal
Historical Spread of Rice Black Bug
(S. sorsogonensis Barrion) et.al. in Region IV

Banos, Bay


Cavite, 2006
Batangas (Sorsogon)
? 2005
1902 (1st record)
1979 (outbreak)
Theory on the Spread of RBB in the
Widespread Distribution

Barrion et. al., 2007

Historical Background
1902: RBBs know to occur in Palawan (According to Dr.
Alberto Barrion)
September 1979: First reported incidence in Southern Palawan
(Brgy. Bonobono, Bataraza)
March-June 1982: Major outbreak, which later spread up to
Northern Palawan, covering 4,500 ha of rice fields
Late June 1992: Mindanao (Curuan, Zamboanga City)- 2,070
ha irrigated fields
March 1995: ARRM
June 1996: Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani and South Cotabato
Late 1998: Visayas, Kabankalan and Negros Occidental
January 1999: Siquijor
September 1999: Bohol
2000: Mindanao, CARAGA Region
Historical Background
2001: Leyte
2003: Samar
Early 2006: Sorsogon, Bicol Region
May 2006: DA-Region VI
03 Feb 2006: Workshop on RBB organized by PhilRice at Los
2007: Iloilo
20 October, 2007: Baler, Aurora Calamba, Laguna (7 infested
15 October, 2008: Los Banos and Bay, Lag.
2009: Cabuyao, Laguna; Pagbilao, Quezon;
Gloria, Oriental Mindoro
2010: Carmona, Cavite; Batangas
July, 2012: Marinduque
Morphology of Rice Black Bug: Methodology

Collection Method:
Handpicking: rice and non-rice areas (weeds)
Light trapping
Total Samples Collected: 2,815 (nymphs and adults)

RBB Specimens loaned from Philippine Museusms and

Abroad: 485
UPLB: 60
DA-BPI, Manila: 6
Hawaii, Sweden,
UK, and USA

DA-RCPC-IV RBB Collection

Species of RBB in the Philippines

S. coarctata (Fabricius) - Palawan

Species of RBB in the Philippines

S. latiuscula (Breddin)-
Laguna: Victoria, Siniloa, Loa
Banos & Calauan, Nueva
Ecija, Capiz
Species of RBB in the Philippines

S. sorsogonensis Barrion
Feeding Habit of RBB

Primitively saprophagous (decaying matter)

6 species evolved as phytophagous (plant feeders)
S. coarctata, S. cinerea
S. lurida, S. ochracea
S. latiuscula, S. tarsalis
Water or moisture loving
External Morphology of RBB
External Morphology of RBB

Relatives of RBB (Hemiptera)

Rice bug Rice grain/seed bug Rice black bug

(Alydidae) (Lygaeidae: (Pentatomidae)
Alydid bug Rhyparochrominae) Pentatomid bug
Lygaeid bug
Relatives of RBB (Pentatomidae)

Nezara viridula (Linnaeus) Rice black bug

Green vegetable bug
Relatives of RBB (Pentatomidae)

Stolia sp. Rice black bug

Rice stink bug
Relatives of RBB (Pentatomidae)


Antestia degenera Rice black bug

Seed sucking stink bug
Relatives of RBB (Pentatomidae)

Predatory shield bug Rice black bug

Part II Biology, Life History and
Ecology of Rice Black Bug
Taxonomy: is the theory and practice of describing the diversity
of organisms and the arrangement of these organisms into
classifications. (Key word: Identification)

Alpha (morphology), Beta (DNA), Gamma (Phylogenetics)

Systematics: a branch of biology responsible for

recognizing, comparing, classifying, and naming the
millions of different sorts of organism that exist.

Taxonomy and Systematics are the most

basic of the science of Biology
Life History of Rice Black Bug
4-7 days No. of generations per year = 2-3

egg nymph
(40-60) 90%

Life Cycle:
2-3 months
adult 5th 4th
Life History of RBB (eggs)

S. coarctata: Female can lay as much as
200 eggs during her life time.
Can lay 40-60 eggs and 90%hatchability
Life History of RBB (egg masses)

Other forms of Rice Black Bug


adult, newly
2nd instar RCPC-IV
5th instar
Life History of Rice Black Bug

RBB species S. coarctata S. sorsogonensis

Min. Max. Min. Max.

Egg incubation stage 4.0 7.0 4.0 5.0

Nymphal Period 26.0 34.0 33.0 42.5
1st instar 3.0 4.0 4.0 5.0
2nd instar 6.0 8.0 6.0 9.0
3rd instar 5.0 6.0 5.0 10.0
4th instar 5.0 6.0 6.0 11.0
5th instar 7.0 10.0 12.0 17.0

56.0 75.0 70.0 99.5

AT Barrion, 2007
Mode of Reproduction of RBB

Reproduce by mating (male & female)

Offsprings: 50% males: 50%females

Parthenogenesis: (females lay eggs without mating)

Oviposited eggs unfertilized
Hatch mostly to form males
Population Dynamics of S. sorsogonensis

Growth Stage of Rice Abundance

Seedling low-absent
Maximum tillering low-absent
Flowering-maturity 0-5/hill
After harvest 0-15/hill
Old stubbles 0-86/hill
Behavior and Habit of RBB

RBB goes down

and hide during
bright sunlight
RBB goes up
2 3 when sunlight was
blocked by clouds

1 4
RBB goes up RBB goes up
during sunrise in before dawn in
search of light search of light

A.M. P.M.
Behavior and Habit of RBB

RBBs are attracted
to weak or dim
light during full

2b 1 moon nights. This

event coincide with
their mating. During
this time, RBB
female releases
RBB males & sex pheromone to
Some RBB herds near females fly, swarm attract male rbb.
lamp posts are then get & mate during full
attracted to artificial moon nights After full moon
bright white lights
females are then

3 ready to lay eggs

on the host plants
Mode of Dispersal of RBB

The capability of rice black bugs to move, spread

and colonize new areas.

Flight (wind direction: South East / South West



Mode of Dispersal of RBB

Lunar phases: Migration, aggregation and mating of rice

black bug which coincides with the
occurrence of full moon.
Possible Explanations
highest illumination (bright light)
best time for black bugs to fly
reduced fallouts or droppings because black bugs
can see new areas to colonize
black bugs are diurnal
Host Plants of RBB

Matured rice plants

Left-over rice plants/stubbles

Abandoned ricefields

Alternate hosts
Gramineae group (grasses)

AT Barrion, 2007
Alternate Hosts of RBB
Alternate Hosts of RBB
Damage Symptoms of RBB

Deadheart Whitehead
Vegetative stage Reproductive stage
Damage Symptoms of RBB

Bug burn

Severe infestation
Damage Symptoms of RBB

Aromatic rice, bacterial leaf blight susceptible varieties and

hybrid rice showed high infestation of rice black bug
Integrated Management of RBB

Synchronous planting

Use varieties with partial resistance to RBB

Use Bacterial Leaf Blight resistant varieties

Plant 2-3 seedlings per hill (educate planters to reduce

the number of seedlings per hill.

Shift in planting from TPR to Direct seeding

Water management
Integrated Management of RBB

Light trapping 3 days before and after full moon

Light trapping method during NON-FULL moon
periods. (Collected RBBs should be converted
into fertilizer: rich in Urea)
Spray Metarhizium fungus
Use of botanical products, pathogens,etc.
Do nothing approach (conserve population of
natural enemies instead of killing them through
too much application of insecticides.
Avoid indiscriminate spraying of insecticides
Utilization of biocon agents (frogs, ducks,
Telenomus triptus wasps etc.)
Stubble removal/clean crop culture
Light Trapping of RBB

1. 500 to 6000 watts
white light
2. electric generator
3. plastic mat /
4. bamboo poles (3)
5. shovel
NCPC, Kabankalan 6. rice sack
7. face and ear
LIGHT TRAP SET-UP mask/cover
Light Trapping of RBB

Light trapping in Bicol

3 days before and 3 days after full moon

Mating and Egg Laying of RBB
Reports of skin or eye irritations by some sensitive persons

RBB, Calamba, Laguna

Natural Enemies of RBB

Telenomus triptus : (24% -

55% parasitism)

Metarhizium anisopliae
(2%-18% rate of infection).
30% infection rate when
applied through irrigation
Natural Enemies of RBB

Predators Mean daily Rank

Bufo marinus (toad) 318.16 1
Phoreus simulans (yellow banded
earwig) 45.90 2
Metioche vittacollis (black criscket) 39.64 3
Conocephalus longipennis (long horn
grasshopper) 37.16 4
Euborellia annulata (black earwig) 30.72 5
Anaxipha(brown cricket) 12.14 6
Ophionea nigrofasciata (ground beetle 6.04 7
Anoplogenius sp. (ground beetle) 3.54 8
RBB Natural Enemies

Hypothesis on the Behavior of Invasive Species

Rice black bug (Scotinophara sp.) (Pentatomidae) (indigenous)

Coconut buff mealybugs (Nipaecoccus nipae) (Pseudococcidae)*
Coconut hispine beetle (Brontispa longgissima)
Corn plant hopper (Sternocranus pacificus) (Delphacidae) (wind)
Pit scale (Asterolecanium sp.) (Asterolecaniidae)
Coconut scale (Aspidiotus destructor) (Diaspididae)*
etc., etc., etc.

* Trading of ornamental plants

Hypothesis on the Behavior of Invasive Species
PEST behavior HUMAN
REGULATING Introduction behavior
MECHANISM Critical stage (Panic
Unstable Pest Pop.
(absence of natural Resting stage

Invasion Destructive phase


Stable Pest Pop. Equilibrium phase

(presence of natural Normalization (Normative Mode)
* Calcetas, 2012 unpublished
Importance of Biological Control Agents
Lotka Volterra Model (1926) Stable population / Natural
control / Ecological Equilibrium

Predator /

Pest /

Importance of Biological Control Agents
Attributes of a good biological control agent
reproduce rapidly
specific to the pest (generalist)
good searching capacity, so that it can keep the pest at low

Joshi, R.C., A.T., Barrion & L.S., Sebastian. 2007. Rice black
bugs : taxonomy, ecology & management of invasive
Outwitting the rice black bug in irrigated rice fields in
Calamba City. 2009. Lecture presented by Dr. Alberto
Barrion in Calamba City Hall.
Thank You and God bless

Department of Agriculture, Regional Crop Protection Center-IV

(049) 536-1905