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  • Rotation-resistant rootworms owe their success to gut microbes

    Populations of microbes in the guts of rotation-resistant and nonresistant Western corn rootworms differ, giving the rotation-resistant rootworms an advantage in soybean fields.

    Populations of microbes in the guts of rotation-resistant and nonresistant Western corn rootworms differ, giving the rotation-resistant rootworms an advantage in soybean fields.

    Graphic by Julie McMahon; photos by Joseph Spencer

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      Populations of microbes in the guts of rotation-resistant and nonresistant Western corn rootworms differ, giving the rotation-resistant rootworms an advantage in soybean fields.

      Graphic by Julie McMahon; photos by Joseph Spencer

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      University of Illinois entomology senior scientist Manfredo Seufferheld, left; Illinois Natural History Survey insect behaviorist Joseph Spencer, right; graduate student Chia-Ching Chu and their colleagues found that gut microbes helped some Western corn rootworm beetles survive in soybean fields long enough to lay their eggs.

      Photo by L. Brian Stauffer

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  • To reach Manfredo Seufferheld, call 217-333-6505; email seufferh@illinois.edu.
    To reach Joseph Spencer, call 217-244-6851; email spencer1@illinois.edu. The paper, “Gut Bacteria Facilitate Adaptation to Crop Rotation in the Western Corn Rootworm,” is available online and from the U. of I. News Bureau.