Climate model for seasonal variation in Bemisia tabaci using CLIMEX in tomato crops

Rodrigo Soares Ramos*, Lalit Kumar, Farzin Shabani, Ricardo Siqueira da Silva, Tamíris Alves de Araújo, Marcelo Coutinho Picanço

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


The whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, is considered one of the most important pests for tomato Solanum lycopersicum. The population density of this pest varies throughout the year in response to seasonal variation. Studies of seasonality are important to understand the ecological dynamics and insect population in crops and help to identify which seasons have the best climatic conditions for the growth and development of this insect species. In this research, we used CLIMEX to estimate the seasonal abundance of a species in relation to climate over time and species geographical distribution. Therefore, this research is designed to infer the mechanisms affecting population processes, rather than simply provide an empirical description of field observations based on matching patterns of meteorological data. In this research, we identified monthly suitability for Bemisia tabaci, with the climate models, for 12 commercial tomato crop locations through CLIMEX (version 4.0). We observed that B. tabaci displays seasonality with increased abundance in tomato crops during March, April, May, June, October and November (first year) and during March, April, May, September and October (second year) in all monitored areas. During this period, our model demonstrated a strong agreement between B. tabaci density and CLIMEX weekly growth index (GIw), which indicates significant reliability of our model results. Our results may be useful to design sampling and control strategies, in periods and locations when there is high suitability for B. tabaci.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)281-291
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Biometeorology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Modelling
  • Seasonality
  • Whiteflies

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