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Insects, Volume 9, Issue 1 (March 2018)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Insects in 2017
Insects 2018, 9(1), 6; doi:10.3390/insects9010006
Received: 11 January 2018 / Revised: 11 January 2018 / Accepted: 11 January 2018 / Published: 11 January 2018
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Abstract
Peer review is an essential part in the publication process, ensuring that Insects maintains high quality standards for its published papers [...]
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Research

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Open AccessArticle Monitoring the Attack Incidences and Damage Caused by the Almond Bark Beetle, Scolytus amygdali, in Almond Orchards
Insects 2018, 9(1), 1; doi:10.3390/insects9010001
Received: 8 November 2017 / Revised: 6 December 2017 / Accepted: 22 December 2017 / Published: 1 January 2018
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Abstract
The almond bark beetle, Scolytus amygdali Geurin-Meneville, is responsible for significant loss of fruit production in almond orchards throughout the world. Here, we studied the damage and the incidences of S. amygdali attack on two different scales: (1) at the level of a
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The almond bark beetle, Scolytus amygdali Geurin-Meneville, is responsible for significant loss of fruit production in almond orchards throughout the world. Here, we studied the damage and the incidences of S. amygdali attack on two different scales: (1) at the level of a single tree; and (2) in an entire orchard. Our results revealed no differences in attack level among four orientations (east, west, south and north sides) for the whole tree. However, the bark that was facing west side in the direction of the prevailing wind was found to be the most suitable for females to initiate attack in Stratum S2. Attack distribution remains the same among different strata (strata is vertical divisions of the tree from the ground to the uppermost twigs with ~40 cm intervals). More than 50% of attack was observed in the trunk of the tree and upper strata. However, multiplication rate (number of emerged adults/maternal gallery) varies significantly between strata. In addition, we studied attack intensity (holes produced by beetle per tree) comparing it to tree morphology (flowers, leaves and circumferences) and gum deposit. Our results revealed a positive correlation between attack intensity and gum deposits, and a negative correlation between attack intensity and tree morphology. This revealed that gum on the tree was an indicator for attack intensity. A positive correlation between attack intensity and the circumference of the tree revealed that older trees were more susceptible to S. amygdali attack. These results, while preliminary, aim to help in the monitoring of S. amygdali populations before deciding to apply any control measures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insect Monitoring and Trapping in Agricultural Systems)
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Open AccessArticle Investigating the (Mis)Match between Natural Pest Control Knowledge and the Intensity of Pesticide Use
Insects 2018, 9(1), 2; doi:10.3390/insects9010002
Received: 15 September 2017 / Revised: 8 November 2017 / Accepted: 24 December 2017 / Published: 5 January 2018
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Abstract
Transforming modern agriculture towards both higher yields and greater sustainability is critical for preserving biodiversity in an increasingly populous and variable world. However, the intensity of agricultural practices varies strongly between crop systems. Given limited research capacity, it is crucial to focus efforts
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Transforming modern agriculture towards both higher yields and greater sustainability is critical for preserving biodiversity in an increasingly populous and variable world. However, the intensity of agricultural practices varies strongly between crop systems. Given limited research capacity, it is crucial to focus efforts to increase sustainability in the crop systems that need it most. In this study, we investigate the match (or mismatch) between the intensity of pesticide use and the availability of knowledge on the ecosystem service of natural pest control across various crop systems. Using a systematic literature search on pest control and publicly available pesticide data, we find that pest control literature is not more abundant in crops where insecticide input per hectare is highest. Instead, pest control literature is most abundant, with the highest number of studies published, in crops with comparatively low insecticide input per hectare but with high world harvested area. These results suggest that a major increase of interest in agroecological research towards crops with high insecticide input, particularly cotton and horticultural crops such as citrus and high value-added vegetables, would help meet knowledge needs for a timely ecointensification of agriculture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Arthropod Pest Control in Orchards and Vineyards)
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Open AccessArticle The Vivarium: Maximizing Learning with Living Invertebrates—An Out-of-School Intervention Is more Effective than an Equivalent Lesson at School
Insects 2018, 9(1), 3; doi:10.3390/insects9010003
Received: 7 December 2017 / Revised: 19 December 2017 / Accepted: 21 December 2017 / Published: 2 January 2018
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Abstract
The introduction of living invertebrates into the classroom was investigated. First, possible anchor points for a lesson with living invertebrates are explored by referring to the curriculum of primary/secondary schools and to out-of-school learning. The effectiveness of living animals for increasing interest, motivation,
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The introduction of living invertebrates into the classroom was investigated. First, possible anchor points for a lesson with living invertebrates are explored by referring to the curriculum of primary/secondary schools and to out-of-school learning. The effectiveness of living animals for increasing interest, motivation, and achievement in recent research is discussed. Next, the Vivarium, an out-of-school learning facility with living invertebrates, is described. The effects of an intervention study with living invertebrates on achievement are then investigated at school (School condition) and out of school (University condition); a third group served as a control condition. The sample consisted of 1861 students (an age range of 10–12 years). Invertebrate-inspired achievement was measured as pre-, post-, and follow-up-tests. Measures of trait and state motivation were applied. The nested data structure was treated with three-level analyses. While achievement generally increased in the treatment groups as compared to the control group, there were significant differences by treatment. The University condition was more effective than the School condition. Achievement was positively related to conscientiousness/interest and negatively to tension. The study concludes that out-of-school learning offers achievement gains when compared to the same treatment implemented at school. The outlook focuses on further research questions that could be implemented with the Vivarium. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Arthropod Education)
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Open AccessArticle Development of Sparganothis sulfureana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) on Cranberry Cultivars
Insects 2018, 9(1), 4; doi:10.3390/insects9010004
Received: 22 November 2017 / Revised: 15 December 2017 / Accepted: 21 December 2017 / Published: 2 January 2018
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Abstract
Sparganothis fruitworm (Sparganothis sulfureana Clemens) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) is a serious pest of cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon Aiton), a native North American fruit cultivated in northern regions of the United States and southeastern Canada. This study assessed antibiosis in several cranberry cultivars commonly
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Sparganothis fruitworm (Sparganothis sulfureana Clemens) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) is a serious pest of cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon Aiton), a native North American fruit cultivated in northern regions of the United States and southeastern Canada. This study assessed antibiosis in several cranberry cultivars commonly grown in Wisconsin. Five cultivars previously shown to host different levels of populations of S. sulfureana in commercial cranberry were assessed in this study to evaluate the performance of S. sulfureana amongst these cultivars. We measured growth and time to developmental stages of newly emerged larvae to adulthood on selected cranberry cultivars in the laboratory. There was no difference in the rates of survival to pupation and to adult emergence among any of the cultivars tested. Mid-instar larvae that fed on the cultivar ‘Ben Lear’ were heavier than those feeding on ‘GH-1’, ‘Stevens’, or ‘HyRed’, and larvae that fed on ‘Mullica Queen’ were heavier than those feeding on ‘HyRed’. However, there were no significant differences in pupal weights or in the number of days from neonate to adult emergence among varieties. Therefore, this study did not provide evidence of antibiosis among the cultivars tested, and found that larval weight was not correlated with other measurements of performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insect-Plant Interactions)
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Open AccessArticle Non-Crop Host Sampling Yields Insights into Small-Scale Population Dynamics of Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura)
Insects 2018, 9(1), 5; doi:10.3390/insects9010005
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 23 December 2017 / Accepted: 29 December 2017 / Published: 3 January 2018
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Abstract
Invasive, polyphagous crop pests subsist on a number of crop and non-crop resources. While knowing the full range of host species is important, a seasonal investigation into the use of non-crop plants adjacent to cropping systems provide key insights into some of the
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Invasive, polyphagous crop pests subsist on a number of crop and non-crop resources. While knowing the full range of host species is important, a seasonal investigation into the use of non-crop plants adjacent to cropping systems provide key insights into some of the factors determining local population dynamics. This study investigated the infestation of non-crop plants by the invasive Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura), a pest of numerous economically important stone and small fruit crops, by sampling fruit-producing non-crop hosts adjacent to commercial plantings weekly from June through November in central New York over a two-year period. We found D. suzukii infestation rates (number of flies emerged/kg fruit) peaked mid-August through early September, with Rubus allegheniensis Porter and Lonicera morrowii Asa Gray showing the highest average infestation in both years. Interannual infestation patterns were similar despite a lower number of adults caught in monitoring traps the second year, suggesting D. suzukii host use may be density independent. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Arthropod Pest Control in Orchards and Vineyards)
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Open AccessArticle Prey Acceptability and Preference of Oenopia conglobata (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), a Candidate for Biological Control in Urban Green Areas
Insects 2018, 9(1), 7; doi:10.3390/insects9010007
Received: 4 December 2017 / Revised: 29 December 2017 / Accepted: 5 January 2018 / Published: 12 January 2018
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Abstract
Oenopia conglobata is one of the most common ladybird species in urban green areas of the Mediterranean region. We have obtained data about its prey acceptability and prey preferences. In a laboratory experiment, we investigated the acceptability of seven aphid and one psyllid
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Oenopia conglobata is one of the most common ladybird species in urban green areas of the Mediterranean region. We have obtained data about its prey acceptability and prey preferences. In a laboratory experiment, we investigated the acceptability of seven aphid and one psyllid species as prey for this coccinellid: the aphids Chaitophorus populeti, Aphis gossypii, Aphis craccivora Monelliopsis caryae, Eucallipterus tiliae, Aphis nerii (on white poplar, pomegranate, false acacia, black walnut, lime, and oleander, respectively), and the psyllid Acizzia jamatonica on Persian silk tree. These species are abundant in urban green areas in the Mediterranean region. In addition, we tested the acceptability of Rhopalosiphum padi on barley, an aphid species easily reared in the laboratory. We also tested preferences of the predator in cafeteria experiments with three aphid species and one aphid and the psyllid. Adults and larvae of the coccinellid accepted all of the preys offered, except A. nerii, with a clear preference for M. caryae. The predator also showed preference for M. caryae when it was offered in a cafeteria experiment with other aphid species or with the psyllid. The aphid R. padi obtained a good acceptability and could be used for rearing O. conglobata in the laboratory. Full article
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