Dealing with an alien invasive pest: Sustainable management tactics for the cereal leaf beetle in western Canada

Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Exhibit Hall 4 (Austin Convention Center)
Swaroop Kher , University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada
Lloyd M. Dosdall , Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, Canada
Héctor A. Cárcamo , Sustainable Production Systems, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lethbridge, AB, Canada
The cereal leaf beetle, Oulema melanopus (L.) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), is a recent alien invasive pest of important cereals including wheat, oats and barley in western Canada. Its current distribution patterns indicate rapid range expansion and increasing numbers of population hot-spots. Research strategies designed to mitigate the risks associated with the establishment of this pest have employed a multi-pronged approach. Our research focused on utilizing the factors influencing its ecology, behaviour and spatio-temporal distribution dynamics to design effective management strategies. Based on studies of O. melanopus ecology, we focused on the effectiveness of management strategies that involved: the augmentation of the principal natural enemy, Tetrastichus julis (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae), testing bioefficacy of the entomopathogenic fungus, Beauveria bassiana Vuillemin and its non-target effects on T. julis, and exploration of host-plant resistance mechanisms in exotic wheat genotypes of central Asian origin with putative resistance to O. melanopus. The proposed research framework has contributed to the understanding of factors determining the dynamics of host-natural enemy interactions.
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