Green leafhoppers are the most common leafhoppers in rice fields and transmit the viral disease tungro. The virus leads to leaf tip discoloration, reduced number of tillers, stunted plants with reduced vigor, and in worst cases plant withering. In order to tell the symptoms of tungro-infected crops from nitrogen deficiency or iron toxicity, check for the presence of the insect: white or pale yellow eggs inside leaf sheaths or midribs; yellow or pale green nymphs with or without black markings; pale green adults with or without black markings and with a characteristic diagonal movement.
Green leafhoppers are common in rainfed and irrigated wetland environments. They are not prevalent in upland rice. Both the nymphs and adults feed on the dorsal surface of the lateral leaf blades rather than the leaf sheaths and the middle leaves. They also prefer rice plants that have been fertilized with large amount of nitrogen. It is usually not a pest of concern, except while transmitting RTV.
Biological control includes small wasps (parasitize the eggs), mirid bug; strepsipterans, pipunculid flies, and nematodes (parasitize both the nymphs and adults), aquatic veliid bugs, nabid bugs, empid flies, damselflies, dragonflies, and spiders or fungal pathogens.
Always consider an integrated approach with preventive measures together with biological treatments if available. Several pesticides are available on the market against this pest. Check with your local retailer which solution best fits the prevalent conditions in the field. Alternating treatments of buprofezin or pymetrozine are useful. Avoid usage of chemicals like chlorpyriphos, lamda cyhalothrin or other synthetic pyrethroid combinations to which the insect has developed resitance.