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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Location: Innovative Fruit Production, Improvement and Protection

2013 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416):
The objectives of this project will be: 1) assess biology and phenology of brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) in specialty crops; 2) develop monitoring and management tools for BMSB; 3) establish effective management strategies for BMSB in specialty crops; and 4) integrate stakeholder input and research findings to form and deliver practical outcomes.

1b. Approach (from AD-416):
The BMSB, Halyomorpha halys (Stal), is an invasive insect native to China, Taiwan, Korea, and Japan that was introduced into the Allentown, PA, region in the mid 1990s. Currently, BMSB is well established throughout DE, MD, PA, NJ, VA and WV, and has been officially detected in 26 states and the District of Columbia. BMSB is polyphagous pest of numerous specialty crops in Asia. In 2010, BMSB populations increased dramatically and attacked many high value specialty crops in the mid-Atlantic region. Damage in commercial tree fruit orchards reached critical levels with some growers losing entire blocks of stone fruit and incurring severe economic injury in apples and Asian pears. Serious problems were detected in a variety of other specialty crops including peppers, tomatos, raspberries, and grapes. In addition, the consequences of BMSB infestation to other specialty crops such as ornamentals are not fully known, the risk to other specialty crops such as lima beans seems high, and questions of potential disease transmission and post-harvest issues continue to arise. As the threat posed by spreading BMSB populations to U.S. agriculture continues to increase, there is no established detection method, treatment threshold, or control strategy for BMSB in any cropping system.

3. Progress Report:
The brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), Halyomorpha halys (Stal), is an invasive insect that has emerged as pest of unprecedented importance to specialty crops in the United States. Currently, BMSB is well established throughout the mid-Atlantic and has been officially detected in 40 states. BMSB is a polyphagous pest of numerous specialty crops. Therefore, we have begun to address the following objectives: 1) establish biology and phenology of BMSB in specialty crops, 2) develop monitoring and management tools for BMSB, 3) establish effective management programs for BMSB in specialty crops, and 4) integrate stakeholder input and research findings to form and deliver practical outcomes. Initiated studies of BMSB survivorship, population growth, and phenology, including voltinism potential and overwintering biology. Defined parameters for diagnosis of BMSB injury in orchard crops, small fruit, vegetables, grapes, and ornamentals, and have begun to characterize the severity of the threat to all specialty crops. Feeding-transmitted yeasts have been identified, and studies of the impact of BMSB feeding on resilience in storage have been initiated for both tree fruit and wine grapes. Completed studies to determine the phenology and impact of BMSB in regions that have a history of damage, and began tracking colonization and impact in new habitats. Conducted a study on the influence of landscape and temporal factors on BMSB movement and patterns of feeding injury, and initial trials have been conducted to assess the potential effects of RNAi on BMSB development and reproduction. Began development of monitoring tools through identification of BMSB pheromone and an olfactory synergist, and initiated commercialization to optimize field use of these attractants. We identified visual stimuli for integration into field trapping, initiated studies of BMSB spatial responses to various stimuli, and evaluated other types of monitoring tools including limb jarring, sweep netting, and visual inspections. Evaluated all registered and developmental insecticides against various life stages of BMSB in lab trials and have begun field validation of promising materials. In addition to conventional broadcast insecticides, we initiated studies of alternative control methods, including fungi, repellents and deterrents, and attract-and-kill strategies. Toward biological control, we completed the first phase of studies to determine the host specificity of natural enemies of BMSB in Asia, notably egg parasites. Native parasitoids, predators, and pathogens are also under study for their potential effects on BMSB eggs, nymphs, and adults. Research and extension project staff collaborated across institutions and regions to establish short-term mitigation strategies for BMSB injury in small fruit, orchard crops, grapes, ornamentals, and vegetables leading to initial commercial management recommendations, crop-specific IPM programs for control of BMSB in specialty crops. Begun to quantify the biological, economic, and sociological impacts of BMSB on specialty crop producers through field data analyses and administration of grower surveys. Developed draft outreach and educational programs to bring research results to stakeholders, and launched web-based and print delivery platforms. Held two meetings of our Stakeholder Advisory Panel to review accomplishments, direct research plans, and guide execution of objectives. In Year 1 of this project, the BMSB research team generated 12 research publications, 22 extension and outreach publications, and delivered over 60 research talks to a highly diverse audience of stakeholders.

4. Accomplishments

Last Modified: 05/23/2017
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