2008 Annual Report
1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
Both parties have an interest in the development of biological control as a component for integrated pest management programs needed for exotic pest insects that pose a threat to U.S. agriculture. Many of the exotic insects that have been introduced into the U.S. through south Florida are pests of ornamentals; and movement of ornamentals may provide pathways for dispersal of these pests into other areas of the continental U.S. However, basic and applied research on biocontrol organisms is not part of the CRIS. Information obtained by the research of the collaborator, however, will be instrumental in advancing research on the chemical ecology of the biocontrol agents and integration of biological control agents with other pest management components being developed by ARS for mitigation of exotic insect pests.
1b.Approach (from AD-416)
The cooperator at the University of FL will conduct research on the basic biology and the use of biological organisms for control of pests of subtropical and tropical ornamental plants. This research will include basic biology of the pest insects, development of rearing methods for pest and biological control agents, tests of host susceptibility to biological control agents, integration of biological control agents with insecticide control measures, and laboratory and field tests of biological control agent efficacy and distribution.
This project is related to the Objective of the parent project: to develop and conduct research that will mitigate the risk of exotic plant pest insects from being introduced into the U.S. Systems will be developed for integrated pest management of exotic pest insects from the Caribbean, Central and South America that pose a threat to U.S. agriculture.
Studies have been completed on basic biology and parasitoids of the papaya mealybug, which is an invasive homopteran pest of ornamental plants that have recently become established in and is spreading throughout south Florida.
Life history of Paracoccus marginatus (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) on four host plant species under laboratory conditions. Environ. Entomol. 37: 630-635.
Field assessment of three introduced parasitoids of Paracoccus marginatus (Hemiptera : Pseudococcidae). (Abstract)
Methods of monitoring research activities conducted under this agreement include site visits and meetings with cooperator (2 times per year), phone discussions, and email communications.