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Classical predator-prey theories predict gross predator population density fluctuations similar to the host-population's gross variations (Watt 1968). Significant positive correlations demonstrate associations or similar patterns of variation between larvae and predaceous arthropods. The explanation for association may be chance, or indicative of density dependence phenomena.
Spiders were significantly correlated with foliage feeding larvae (FFL) twice, velvetbean caterpillar (VBC)
6 times, and fall armyworm (FAW) once (Table 4). For earwigs there were 6 significant associations involving FFL once and VBC 5 times. Nabids had the greatest total number of correlations. Nabids were correlated with FFL
4 times, VBC 11 times, and FAW once. Geocoris spp. showed few correlations; they were associated with VBC twice, FAW twice, and CEW twice. Ants were associated with VBC once, the fewest significant associations of all predator groupings. Orius insidiosus adults showed significant correlations with FFL twice, FAW 3 times, and CEW 3 times.
For further elucidation of association patterns a
refinement in sampling technique and statistical analysis is needed. Absolute samples or calibrated relative samples of pests and beneficials analyzed using multivariate analysis may prove useful in clarifying associations.
Some inferences about the relative importance of predaceous arthropods on north Florida peanuts can be made.