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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Effects of Field Edge Type and Trap Location on Capture Number of Predatorsand a Parasitoid of the European Corn Borer, Ostrinia Nubilalis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae)

Authors
item Bruck, Denny
item Lewis, Leslie

Submitted to: Environmental Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: August 12, 1998
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: The European corn borer is one of the most destructive insects of field corn in the United States. Damage caused by the corn borer ranks second annually only to the corn rootworm complex. Studies are continuing to utilize natural enemies to manage this pest. Currently, scientists are investigating how vegetation influences abundance and activity of insect predators and parasites. Three types of field borders, herbaceous, intermediate and wooded, were evaluated by placing yellow sticky traps at field edges and within fields to capture beneficial insects. Yellow sticky traps were placed at two heights in each edge type and a bordering corn fields to monitor natural enemy numbers. The number of lady beetles and lacewings were greater in corn fields bordered by edge types with diverse vegetation. The numbers of captures of a parasitic wasp were not effected by edge type but were significantly greater from traps located from the interior most location within the corn field. The results of this researc show that corn growers and IPM practitioners may benefit from an increase in natural enemy numbers resulting from conserving or manipulating existing field edge habitats. This research provides the basis to manage the European corn borer with a reduced input of chemical insecticides.

Technical Abstract: The European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis) (Hubner) is one of the most destructive insects of field corn in the United States. Damage caused by the corn borer ranks second annually only to the corn rootworm complex. The use of habitat conservation and manipulation are active areas of research. This study evaluated the effect of three different edge type habitats as refuge areas for corn borer natural enemies. Yellow sticky traps (Gemplers TM, AM No-Bait) at and 1 m above ground level were placed in each edge type and a bordering corn field to monitor natural enemy numbers. The number of several predaceous species including lady beetles and lacewings were greater in corn fields bordered by edge types with diverse vegetation. The capture number of the primary parasitoid Macrocentrus grandii Goidanich was not influenced by edge type but significantly greater numbers were captured from traps located from the interior most location sampled in the corn field. The results of this research show that growers and IPM practitioners may benefit from an increase in natural enemy numbers resulting from the conservation or manipulation of existing or incorporated field edge habitats. Edge types with sources of food and shade were beneficial to several natural enemy species, although further study is need to determine if capture numbers of natural enemies can be used to predict levels of predation and parasitism in a integrated pest management system.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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