Location: Southern Insect Management Research
Project Number: 6066-22000-065-07-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Mar 1, 2013
End Date: Mar 1, 2015
The objective of this cooperative research project is to conduct risk assessment research for Lepidopterous pests of Bt-crops. This research should enhance Bt-resistance management strategies which are designed to delay the onset of resistance development in target insects.
This agreement will determine the effect of Bt crop production on the population genetics of bollworm, tobacco budworm, and fall armyworm. Specific issues will be: 1) a better overall understanding of gene flow and population structure for the pests; 2) Bt-resistance allelic frequency estimates over time; 3) the impact of changing refuge strategies and dynamic agroecosystems on managing resistance to Bt; and 4) the impact of Bt-suppressed population densities on insecticide resistance, e.g. the recent pyrethroid resistance in bollworm. The cooperator will be actively involved in all phases of this research including the collection of test insects from across the U. S. Cotton Belt. Pyrethroid resistance assays will be conducted in the cooperator's laboratory. Insect tissue will then be sent to the USDA-ARS for use in genetic marker analysis and carbon isotope analysis. Other technologies (e.g. secondary plant chemical detection in insect tissue and oxygen and nitrogen isotope analysis) will be used as they become available to further understand the population ecology of the pests in relation to Bt resistance management. Landscape population models of Lygus lineolaris and Helicoverpa zea will be adapted from existing Bt-resistance evolution models to organize information and prioritize research on polyphagous pests impacting the economics and ecology of Bt cotton systems in the Mississippi Delta.