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Insects. 2019 Jan 5;10(1). pii: E6. doi: 10.3390/insects10010006.

Recruiting on the Spot: A Biodegradable Formulation for Lacewings to Trigger Biological Control of Aphids.

Author information

1
Department of Plant Protection Biology, Swedish University of Agricultural Science, 230 53 Alnarp, Sweden. Joakim.palsson@slu.se.
2
NIBIO, Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research, Postbox 115, NO-1431 Ås, Norway. Gunda.Thoeming@nibio.no.
3
Isca Technologies Inc., 1230 Spring St., Riverside, CA 92507, USA. rodrigo.silva@iscatech.com.
4
Department of Plant Protection Biology, Swedish University of Agricultural Science, 230 53 Alnarp, Sweden. mporcel@agrosavia.co.
5
Department of Plant Protection Biology, Swedish University of Agricultural Science, 230 53 Alnarp, Sweden. teun.dekker@slu.se.
6
Department of Plant Protection Biology, Swedish University of Agricultural Science, 230 53 Alnarp, Sweden. marco.tasin@slu.se.

Abstract

Upon herbivory, plants release herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs), which induce chemical defenses in the plant as well as recruit natural enemies. However, whether synthetic HIPVs can be employed to enhance biological control in a cultivated crop in the field is yet to be explored. Here we show that a biodegradable formulation loaded with induced and food-signaling volatiles can selectively recruit the common green lacewing, Chrysoperla carnea, and reduce pest population under field conditions. In apple orchards, the new formulation attracted lacewing adults over a 4-week period, which correlated well with independent assessments of the longevity of the slow-release matrix measured through chemical analyses. In barley, lacewing eggs and larvae were significantly more abundant in treated plots, whereas a significant reduction of two aphid species was measured (98.9% and 93.6% of population reduction, for Sitobion avenae and Rhopalosiphum padi, respectively). Results show the potential for semiochemical-based targeted recruitment of lacewings to enhance biological control of aphids in a field setting. Further research should enhance selective recruitment by rewarding attracted natural enemies and by optimizing the application technique.

KEYWORDS:

Chrysoperla carnea; apple; barley; ecological intensification; herbivory induced plant volatiles; integrated pest management; semiochemicals

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