PS 5-56 - Environmentally friendly pest control:  Natural enemies and alternative chemistry

Monday, August 8, 2011
Exhibit Hall 3, Austin Convention Center
R. Andrew Rodstrom1, Alejandro Del Pozo1, Bryan Carlson2, Neal Kittelson3, Eugene Hannon4 and John J. Brown1, (1)Department of Entomology, Washington State University, Pullman, WA, (2)Crops and Soils, Washington State University, Pullman, WA, (3)Forest Health, Idaho Department of Lands, Coeur d'Alene, ID, (4)Fresno Department of Agriculture, Fresno, CA

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) oversees an international certification program that requires qualifying members to follow a rigorous set of guidelines to maintain environmental quality and local habitats in areas of sustainable fiber production.  Two-thirds of hybrid poplars grown in the Pacific Northwest are certified by the FSC, thus restricting the use of most conventional insecticides and requiring the development of an integrated pest management strategy.  Previous work identified the natural history of the insect community found within hybrid poplar farms as well as several pest control techniques with minimal environmental impact.  We focused on evaluating pest-specific control strategies (mating disruption, single tree pesticide applications, and alternative pesticides) and identifying the suite of natural enemies present in this agroecosystem.  Field and laboratory feeding trials and damage surveys were utilized to assess the efficacy of alternative pesticides and single tree treatments.  Natural enemy populations were quantified by pairing field surveys with multiple trapping techniques (pane traps, light traps and yellow sticky cards).  The effectiveness of the mating disruption strategy was evaluated by using a system-wide pheromone monitoring program and a fall survey of susceptible plantings.  This project evaluated the overall success of these short and long-term environmentally friendly pest control strategies. 


Mating disruption was shown to be an effective control for two pests, Parathene robiniae (Lepidoptera: Sesiidae) and Prionoxystus robiniae (Lepidoptera: Cossidae), which had minimal negative impact on the non-target insect community.  Our results regarding the application of alternative pesticides to individual trees were not conclusive.  Emmectin-benzoate and acephate exhibited limited control of Cryptorhynchus lapathi (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), while it effectively controlled Pa. robiniae (p=0.009).  Aerial applications of chlorantraniliprole and diflubenzuron were both shown to be effective pest controls without negatively effecting local natural enemy populations.  The two main hymenopteran natural enemies (Eulophus orgyiae [Eulophidae] and Trichogramma sp. [Trichogrammidae]) in this system provided adequate control of several lepidopteran pests.  This research has shown that the environmentally friendly integrated pest management strategies implemented under the FSC guidelines are effective in this agroecosystem.  Overall, these alternative pesticides provide similar pest controls to those of conventional, broad-spectrum pesticides.  In addition, several of the techniques evaluated in this study may be utilized in ecologically sensitive natural systems to control invasive pests such as Lymantria dispar (Lepidoptera: Lymantriidae), Anoplophora glabripennis (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae), and Agrilus planipennis (Coleoptera:  Buprestidae).

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