Since its introduction and subsequent colonization in the northeastern United States, the
European corn borer (ECB), Ostrinia nubilalis (Hubner), has invaded all of the major corn-growing
areas on the eastern half of the continent and has shown a phenomenal adaptation to regional
climatic and environmental conditions. The insect has dispersed west to the Rockies, south to the
Gulf States, and north into southern Canada.
With adaptation to regional conditions, ecotypes of the ECB have developed the ability to produce
increasing numbers of generations per year throughout its range in North America. When the ECB came
to this continent it produced one to two generations per year; it now produces up to four
generations per year in southern areas.
Over the years, voltinism of the borer has changed in some locations, has differed from location
to location, and has varied in the same locale from year to year. These changes, which are due to
adaptation to different regional climatic conditions, have resulted in the wide distribution of the
insect population. This regional adaptation has often produced heterovoltinism in transition zones.
Palmer, D.F.; Schenk, T.C.; Chiang, H.C..
Dispersal and Voltinism Adaptation of the European Corn Borer in North America, 1917-1977.
Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station.
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