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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: DOMESTIC, EXOTIC, AND EMERGING DISEASES OF CITRUS, VEGETABLES, AND ORNAMENTALS (DEED)

Location: Subtropical Plant Pathology Research

Title: Tracking disease and insect pests using Smartphone technology: a new approach for regional (and local) pest management

Authors
item Turechek, William
item Adkins, Scott
item Mellinger, H -
item Frantz, G -
item Lucas, L -
item Mcavoy, E -
item Russo, J -

Submitted to: Tomato Institute
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: July 1, 2011
Publication Date: September 6, 2011
Citation: Turechek, W., Adkins, S.T., Mellinger, H.C., Frantz, G., Lucas, L. 2011. Tracking disease and insect pests using Smartphone technology: a new approach for regional (and local) pest management. Tomato Institute. Florida Tomato Institute Proceedings (PRO 527) pg. 15-16.

Interpretive Summary: Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) is vectored by the silverleaf whitefly (Bemisia tabaci biotype B) and has spread widely in Florida resulting in millions of dollars of lost production. A linear relationship has been shown between the average numbers of whiteflies in neighboring fields, i.e., fields that share a common boundary, and in fields that are located two and three fields away, although the strength of the relationship decreases with distance. The results argue for a greater regional effort in managing whiteflies and TYLCV. We have developed a decision support system (DSS) for management and tracking whiteflies and virus across commodities to help achieve this goal. The DSS is comprehensive in that it can accomodate a multitude of crops and their associated pests and diseases. The DSS will be of use to scouts and growers, as well as scientists who are interested in tracking pests and diseases.

Technical Abstract: Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (TYLCV) is vectored by the silverleaf whitefly (Bemisia tabaci biotype B) and was first detected in south Florida in 1997. The virus has spread widely in Florida and is responsible for millions of dollars of lost production. Anlaysis of data from a comprehensive, multi-year survey of Florida vegetable production has given us a more complete understanding of the temporal and spatial (geographical) features associated with TYLCV epidemics. The data show that the severity of TYLCV closely follows the increase in mean whitefly density, as well as the average age of the fields in production. A linear relationship was shown between the average numbers of whiteflies in neighboring fields, i.e., fields that share a common boundary, and this relationship extends to fields that are located two and three fields away, although the strength of the relationship decreases with distance. The results of the analyses indicate the need for a greater regional effort in managing whiteflies and TYLCV. To to this end, we have developed a decision support system (DSS) to assist in tracking whiteflies and virus across commodities. The DSS is comprehensive by design to include tracking of multiple pests and diseases in several commonly grown vegeatble crops in Florida. The DSS operates by allowing users to enter scouting data into a GPS-ready smartphone through a customizable "app", and the data are then uploaded to central server where they can be processed. The field-level data can be viewed by accessing a password protected website and mapped in a variety of formats. Finally, a pest and disease management module is under developmnet that allows grower or scouts to assign treatment options to indvidual fields (e.g. fungicide and insecticde applications).The options are cataloged where they can be summarized for future needs.

Last Modified: 8/30/2014