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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Manipulating Host & Mate-Finding Behavior of Plum Curculio: Dvlpmnt of a Multi-Life Stage Mgmnt Strategy for a Key Fruit Pest -Cfda #10.309

Location: Appalachian Fruit Research Laboratory: Innovative Fruit Production, Improvement and Protection

2010 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
We will: (1) isolate and identify attractive olfactory stimuli associated with host- and mate-finding for adult plum curculio using gas chromatography coupled with electroantennogram dected and mass spectrometry; (2) develop effective deployment strategies for newly identified olfactory stimuli to manipulate host- and mate-finding, and promote aggreagation of the plum curculio within apple orchards; (3) evaluate efficacy of entomopathogenic nematodes against plum curculio larvae; (4) evaluate efficacy of a multi lifestage approach for management of plum curculio within spatially precise locations within commercial apple orchards; and (5) actively promote outreach and information exchange among interested stakeholders, crop consultants, state IPM research and extension programs, and federal researchers.


1b.Approach (from AD-416)
We will utilize laboratory-based electrophysiological studies and field-based bioassays to identify novel olfactory stimuli for the plum curculio. We will also perform laboratory and field-based studies to identify effective entomopathogenic nematodes. Final evaluations will be made in commercial orchards.


3.Progress Report

At grower orchards in MA and VT, a designated block was divided into two ~2.5 ha plots to compare the trap-tree management strategy with grower standard whole-plot insecticide spray programs. All trap-tree treatment plots were established during late bloom. Within each trap tree, benzaldehyde dispensers deployed in association with pheromone dispensers containing grandisoic acid. At petal fall, growers applied a full block insecticide application. In trap-tree plots, only the trap trees were subsequently treated with insecticide following the full block insecticide application. The grower-standard received insecticide sprays throughout the entire plot. Fruit injury evaluations are currently being made with the final seasonal assessment to be made in early July. The total number of fruit with oviposition scars and total number of oviposition scars are being recorded based on a sample of 20 fruit/tree in trap trees in the trap-tree plot and flagged control trees in the grower-standard plots, and in peripherally located trees surrounding each trap tree and control tree for a total of up to 6000 fruit per plot. In addition, 20 interior trees (20 fruit/trees) were sampled along diagonal paths from opposing corners of the trap-tree and grower-standard plots to provide a measure of efficacy of each treatment program to protect fruit from plum curculio immigration and injury. A total of 400 interior fruit per plot were sampled. The ADODR has monitored activities through emails, meetings, and calls.


Last Modified: 7/28/2014
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