Insects2014, 5(3), 615-628; doi:10.3390/insects5030615 (doi registration under processing) - published online 24 July 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The increasing concern over the continued use of pesticides is pressurising apple growers to look for alternatives to chemical pest control. The re-discovery, and subsequent conservation, of the beneficial predatory mite, Anystis baccarum (Linnaeus) (Acari: Anystidae), in Bramley apple orchards in Northern Ireland offers a potential alternative control component for incorporation into integrated pest management strategies. Anystis baccarum readily feeds upon economically important invertebrate pest species including European fruit tree red spider mite, Panonychus ulmi (Koch) (Acari: Tetranychidae) and show a level of compatibility with chemical pesticides. Recent mis-identification by apple growers of this beneficial mite species had resulted in unnecessary pesticide applications being applied within Northern Irish apple orchards. However, dissemination of information to the apple growers and promotion of the benefits this mite offers in apple orchards has helped to conserve its populations. Apple growers, across the United Kingdom, must be encouraged to be aware of A. baccarum, and indeed all predatory fauna, within their orchards and seek to conserve populations. In doing so, it will ensure that the British apple market remains an environmentally sustainable production system.
Abstract: The sweetpotato whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) continues to be a serious threat to crops worldwide. The UK holds Protected Zone status against this pest and, as a result, B. tabaci entering on plant material is subjected to a policy of eradication. There has recently been a shift from Middle East-Asia Minor 1 to the more chemical resistant Mediterranean species entering the UK. Predatory mites (Amblyseius swirskii, Transeius montdorensis and Typhlodromalus limonicus) were screened for their impact upon various lifestages of B. tabaci Mediterranean species. Approximately 30% of eggs were fed upon by A. swirskii following a 5 day period. Feeding rates slightly decreased for all mite species when feeding on first instar life-stages (27%, 24%, 16% respectively) and significantly decreased when feeding on second instars (8.5%, 8.5%, 8.7% respectively). Combining the two mite species (A. swirskii and T. montdorensis) increased mortality of Bemisia eggs to 36%. The potential of incorporating the mites into existing control strategies for B. tabaci is discussed.
Abstract: The lack of an effective pheromone lure has made it difficult to monitor and manage the navel orangeworm, Amyelois transitella (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae), in the economically important crops in which it is the primary insect pest. A series of experiments was conducted to demonstrate and characterize a practical synthetic pheromone lure for capturing navel orangeworm males. Traps baited with lures prepared with 1 or 2 mg of a three- or four-component formulation captured similar numbers of males. The fluctuation over time in the number of males captured in traps baited with the pheromone lure correlated significantly with males captured in female-baited traps. Traps baited with the pheromone lure usually did not capture as many males as traps baited with unmated females, and the ratio of males trapped with pheromone to males trapped with females varied between crops and with abundance. The pheromone lure described improves the ability of pest managers to detect and monitor navel orangeworm efficiently and may improve management and decrease insecticide treatments applied as a precaution against damage. Awareness of differences between male interaction with the pheromone lure and calling females, as shown in these data, will be important as further studies and experience determine how best to use this lure for pest management.
Abstract: Mate finding and courtship involve complex interactions that require close coordination between individuals of the opposite gender. Well-organized signalling systems, sometimes involving a combination of signal modalities, are required to convey species-specific and individual information to members of the opposite gender. Previous studies of psyllids have focused on single-signal modalities and have largely ignored the potentially interdependent nature of different types of signals. Several studies have shown that semiochemicals play a role in psyllid mate finding. However, long-range semiochemical sex attractants, such as the highly volatile sex pheromones used by many Lepidoptera (molecular weights <300), are yet to be identified. The compounds identified thus far, namely 13-methylheptacosane (from Cacopsylla pyricola) and dodecanoic acid (from Diaphorina citri), seem to have short range activity or no activity under field conditions. The possible role played by cuticular hydrocarbons in psyllid courtship remains largely ignored. Conversely, many psyllid species rely on vibrational signals for mate finding and mate assessment during courtship. This apparent disproportional reliance on vibrational rather than semiochemical signals suggests that vibrational signals have been more influential in sexual selection in psyllids. However, male fitness, female choice and benefits accrued from selecting fitter males remain poorly understood.
Abstract: The European cherry fruit fly, Rhagoletis cerasi (L.) (Diptera: Tephritidae), is the most important pest of sweet cherries in Europe. The aim of our experiments was to develop a new, cost-efficient, lead chromate-free and more eco-friendly trap for monitoring and mass trapping of R. cerasi. Five different-colored yellow panels and three different trap shapes were compared to a standard Rebell® amarillo trap in three experimental orchards in 2012. Trap color F, with a strong increase in reflectance at 500–550 nm and a secondary peak in the UV-region at 300–400 nm, captured significantly more flies than the standard Rebell® amarillo trap. Yellow traps with increased reflectance in the blue region (400–500 nm) were least attractive. Trap shape was of minor importance, as long as the object was three-dimensional and visible from all directions. Based on economic and practical considerations, a cylinder-shaped trap “UFA-Samen Kirschenfliegenfalle” was developed for commercial use and is currently under on-farm evaluation.
Abstract: Busseola fusca (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) is an important pest of maize and sorghum in sub-Saharan Africa. One century after its first description by Fuller in 1901, inaccurate information based on earlier reports are still propagated on its distribution (e.g., absent from the lower altitudes in East Africa) and host plant range (e.g., feeding on a large range of wild grass species). This review provides updated information on the biology, distribution and genetics of B. fusca with emphasis on insect-plant interactions. Related to this, new avenues of stem borer management are proposed.