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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Vegetable Research at YARL
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Vegetable Insect Research Objectives:

  • Develop basic knowledge of behavior, life history strategies, and population dynamics of potato psyllid, leafhoppers, wireworms, other insect and mite pests of potato, and their natural enemies in relation to potato cropping systems of the western U.S.
  • Develop an understanding of the chemical interactions of the potato, potato insect and mite pests, and selected natural enemies.
  • Characterize and integrate transgenic and traditionally inherited plant resistance into integrated pest management programs, utilizing biological control agents and explore indirect effects of potato resistance on natural enemies of potato insect pests.
  • Identify pest-specific chemical agents for suppression and control of potato insect pests (such as attractants and disruptants), and develop means of reducing reproduction and colonization of potato by leafhoppers and psyllids using antifeedants and disruptants.

Researchers Conducting Vegetable Insect Research at YARL:

  • Dr. Peter Landolt (Research Leader)
    • Dr. Peter Landolt serves as Research Leader for YARL. Dr. Landolt's research interests include the development of attractants for monitoring and control of insect pests in potato.
  • Dr. Joseph Munyaneza
    • Dr. Joseph E. Munyaneza is a  Research Entomologist at the Yakima Agricultural Research Laboratory (YARL) with a background in integrated pest management of agricultural insect pests and diseases, with emphasis on management of disease vectoring by potato insect pests. 
    • Dr. Joseph Munyaneza has been featured in a Potato Country article. Click here to read the article.
    • Dr. Joseph Munyaneza was also featured in a recent ARS News Service brief. Click here to read the article
    • Dr. Joseph Munyaneza recently authored an article in the Economist magazine. Click here to read the article.
  • Dr. Dave Horton
    • Dr. Horton is a Research Entomologist having interests in behavioral ecology, biological control and applied ecology. His research focuses on the biology and management of insect pests in potatos, including wireworms and potato psyllid. Other interests include studies on the population biology and behavior of predatory true bugs in the families Anthocoridae and Miridae
  • Dr. Tom Unruh
    • Dr. Tom Unruh's research involves classical biological control introductions of parasitoids, studies of natural products for pest control, landscape ecology studies and molecular studies on pest and natural enemies to evaluate insecticide resistance, biogeographic and genetic relationships, and, most recently, to evaluate predation rates.
  • Dr. Rodney Cooper
    • Dr. Rodney Cooper is a Research Entomologist whose research interests include the biology and ecology of Hemipteran pests potato. He is currently investigating host-plant resistance against the potato psyllid, and interactions among psyllids, psyllid-vectored pathogens, and their host-plants.

Last Modified: 3/27/2013
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