Location: Subtropical Plant Pathology Research
2013 Annual Report
2) Red Gator will also assist in evaluating how use of regional scouting data (disseminated via AgScouter) can impact pest populations, pesticide usage, and factors associated with pesticide inefficiency. This will be done largely through data collection. We plan to document the changes in pest populations and pesticide usage prior to and after implementation of AgScouter on our cooperators farms. In Florida, we currently have a four year database of bi-weekly observations of whitefly densities and TYLCV incidences over a ~20,000 acre area of tomato production region in southwest Florida, encompassing three major producers and 2-3 mid-sized producers, and a three year database of a smaller region in west-central Florida. This database will serve as the baseline of average pest densities of whiteflies and TYLCV severities in Florida. This database also serves as the baseline for thrips and GRSV incidence. Our cooperators, thorough the assistance of Red Gator, have willingly provided us their scouting reports and we will continue to work directly with them to collect new data through the duration of the study to measure pest populations and pesticide usage after use AgScouter. We will work with Red Gator to establish new collaborations when feasible.
Three cooperators have been enlisted to help evaluate the performance of AgScouter under field conditions, help develop the chemical management databases, and to assist with training sessions. Red Gator is one of the collaborators. At the time of this report, the cooperator has become familiar with the updates to AgScouter, including use of the new mobile applications. He has assisted in the validation of AgScouter and has provided a substantial amount of data for validation. The development of the chemical management database is currently underway. The database will consist of all registered chemicals and the relevant information on the pesticide label for the crops included into the AgScouter system. Plans for on-site training sessions in both Florida have been discussed, but none have been planned. Red Gator will play an important role by helping to promote AgScouter and the training sessions. ARS PI communicates on regular basis with the cooperator via E-mail and telephone communication.