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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: INTEGRATED ORCHARD MANAGEMENT AND AUTOMATION FOR DECIDUOUS TREE FRUIT PRODUCTION

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

Title: Identification of overwintering sites of the invasive brown marmorated stink bug in natural landscapes using human and canine surveyors

Authors
item Lee, Doo-Hyung
item Cullum, John -
item Beckett, Lisa -
item Anderson, Jennifer -
item Daugherty, Jodi -
item Leskey, Tracy

Submitted to: PLoS One
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: April 9, 2014
Publication Date: April 9, 2014
Citation: Lee, D., Cullum, J., Beckett, L., Anderson, J., Daugherty, J., Leskey, T.C. 2014. Identification of overwintering sites of the invasive brown marmorated stink bug in natural landscapes using human and canine surveyors. PLoS One. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0091575.

Interpretive Summary: The brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is an invasive species from Asia causing significant economic losses in agricultural production in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. Unlike other crop pests, BMSB is an extreme nuisance, as massive numbers of adults often invade human-made structures to overwinter inside protected environments. However, the overwintering ecology of BMSB in natural landscapes is virtually unknown especially in the invaded range. We explored forested landscapes in the mid-Atlantic region to locate and characterize natural overwintering structures used by BMSB. We also evaluated potential for detector canines to locate BMSB overwintering in natural landscapes to enhance the accuracy and efficiency of the survey. From these studies, live overwintering BMSB were recovered from dry protective crevices in dead, standing trees with thick bark, particularly oak (Quercus spp.) and locust (Robinia spp.). A total 11.8 percent of all dead trees in the landscapes shared these favorable characteristics indicating that those trees could serve as potential overwintering sites for BMSB. Two detector dogs were successfully trained to recognize the odor of adult BMSB and accurately detected target insects with greater than 84 percent accuracy for all indoor laboratory and outdoor semi-field trials. Detector canines also found overwintering BMSB under field conditions. Elucidation of characteristics of natural overwintering sites of BMSB will serve as baseline information to enhance sustainable mitigation strategies including Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs. Field surveys to sample highly dispersed and concealed overwintering BMSB can be facilitated by using detector canines leading to improved accuracy and efficacy of sampling efforts.

Technical Abstract: Background: Halyomorpha halys (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) is an invasive species from Asia causing major economic losses in agricultural production in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. H. halys overwinters in sheltered locations with protective and less extreme microclimates. Unlike other crop pests, H. halys is an extreme nuisance, as massive numbers of adults often invade human-made structures to overwinter inside protected environments. Perhaps because of this highly conspicuous dispersal to houses, buildings and sheds, research to discover the overwintering ecology of H. halys has focused on human structures. The overwintering ecology of H. halys in natural landscapes is virtually unknown especially in the invaded range. Methodology/Principal Findings: We explored forested landscapes in the mid-Atlantic region to locate and characterize natural overwintering structures used by H. halys and the distribution and abundance of these sites. We also evaluated potential for detector canines to locate H. halys overwintering in natural landscapes to enhance the accuracy and efficiency of the survey. From these studies, we located overwintering H. halys populations at all survey locations and indentified the shared characteristics of those overwintering sites. Live H. halys were recovered from dry protective crevices in dead, standing trees with thick bark, particularly oak (Quercus spp.) and locust (Robinia spp.). A total 11.8 percent of all dead trees in these landscapes shared these favorable characteristics indicating that those trees could serve as potential overwintering sites for H. halys. For trees with favorable characteristics, we sampled approximately 20 percent of the total above-ground tree area and recovered 5.9 adults per tree from the trees with H. halys present. Two detector dogs were successfully trained to recognize the odor of adult H. halys and accurately detected target insects with greater than 84 percent accuracy for all indoor laboratory and outdoor semi-field trials. Detector canines also found overwintering H. halys under field conditions. In natural landscapes, H. halys were recovered only from dead trees with favorable tree characteristics identified previously by human surveyors on which detector canines indicated the presence of the insects. Conclusions/Significance: Elucidation of characteristics of natural overwintering sites of H. halys will serve as baseline information to establish risk levels posed by those overwintering populations to cultivated crops. This knowledge will accordingly enhance sustainable mitigation strategies including Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs. Field surveys to sample highly dispersed and concealed overwintering H. halys can be facilitated by using detector canines leading to improved accuracy and efficacy of sampling efforts.

Last Modified: 10/1/2014
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