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Open AccessArticle

The Contribution of Surrounding Margins in the Promotion of Natural Enemies in Mediterranean Apple Orchards

1
IRTA Fruitcentre, PCiTAL, Park of Gardeny, Fruitcentre Building, 25003 Lleida, Spain
2
Department of Crop and Forest Science, Agrotecnio, University of Lleida, Avda. Alcalde Rovira Roure 191, 25199 Lleida, Spain
3
IRTA, Ctra de Cabrils km.2, 08348 Cabrils, Barcelona, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Insects 2019, 10(5), 148; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects10050148
Received: 2 April 2019 / Revised: 21 May 2019 / Accepted: 21 May 2019 / Published: 23 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pest Control in Fruit Trees)
(1) Habitat management can enhance beneficial arthropod populations and provide ecosystem services such as biological control. However, the implementation of ecological infrastructures inside orchards has a number of practical limitations. Therefore, planting/growing insectary plants in the margins of orchards should be considered as an alternative approach. (2) Here, we assessed the efficacy of a flower margin composed by four insectary plant species (Achillea millefolium, Lobularia maritima, Moricandia arvensis and Sinapis alba), which was placed on an edge of four Mediterranean apple orchards to attract natural enemies of two apple tree aphids (Dysaphis plantaginea and Eriosoma lanigerum). We also characterized the natural enemies present in the aphid colonies. (3) Our results show that the implementation of a flower margin at the edge of apple orchards attracts predators (Syrphidae, Thysanoptera, Araneae, Heteroptera, Coleoptera) and parasitoids. Parasitoids are the main natural enemies present in aphid colonies in our area. (4) The implementation of the flower margins successfully recruited natural enemy populations, and the presence of parasitoids in the surroundings of the orchards increased the parasitism of D. plantaginea colonies. View Full-Text
Keywords: agroecological infrastructures; biological control; flower strip; natural enemies; Syrphidae; parasitoids; Eriosoma lanigerum; Dysaphis plantaginea agroecological infrastructures; biological control; flower strip; natural enemies; Syrphidae; parasitoids; Eriosoma lanigerum; Dysaphis plantaginea
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MDPI and ACS Style

Rodríguez-Gasol, N.; Avilla, J.; Aparicio, Y.; Arnó, J.; Gabarra, R.; Riudavets, J.; Alegre, S.; Lordan, J.; Alins, G. The Contribution of Surrounding Margins in the Promotion of Natural Enemies in Mediterranean Apple Orchards. Insects 2019, 10, 148.

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