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Agronomy 2018, 8(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/agronomy8010007

Climate Change and Pest Management: Unanticipated Consequences of Trophic Dislocation

1
Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Blackland Research Center, Temple, TX 76502, USA
2
Department of Entomology, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC), Wooster, OH 44691, USA
3
Department of Horticultural and Crop Science, OARDC, Wooster, OH 44691, USA
4
School of Environment and Natural Resources, OARDC, Wooster, OH 44691, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 October 2017 / Revised: 14 December 2017 / Accepted: 10 January 2018 / Published: 17 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Climate Change in Agriculture: Impacts and Adaptations)
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Abstract

The growth of plants and insects occurs only above a minimum temperature threshold. In insects, the growth rate depends on the temperature above the threshold up to a maximum. In plants the growth rate above the threshold generally depends on the availability of sunlight. Thus, the relative growth rates of crops and insect phytophages are expected to differ between temperature regimes. We should therefore expect insect pest pressure at a location to change with climate warming. In this study, we used actual and simulated climate data developed for the IPCC 4th Assessment Report to drive linked plant and insect growth models to examine likely changes in insect-crop interaction. Projections of insect-crop dynamics through the 21st century suggest increases in pest pressure over much of the American Midwest, which could result in substantial increases in pesticide use to maintain productivity. Thus, climate warming could cause an increase in agriculture’s carbon footprint. View Full-Text
Keywords: agricultural productivity; corn-soybeans rotation; crop protection; global warming; insect-plant interactions; population dynamics agricultural productivity; corn-soybeans rotation; crop protection; global warming; insect-plant interactions; population dynamics
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Taylor, R.A.J.; Herms, D.A.; Cardina, J.; Moore, R.H. Climate Change and Pest Management: Unanticipated Consequences of Trophic Dislocation. Agronomy 2018, 8, 7.

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