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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Newark, Delaware » Beneficial Insects Introduction Research Unit » Research » Research Project #432945

Research Project: Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) Classical Biological Control – Phase II/year 2

Location: Beneficial Insects Introduction Research Unit

Project Number: 8010-22000-030-19-I
Project Type: Interagency Reimbursable Agreement

Start Date: Mar 31, 2017
End Date: Dec 30, 2018

The objectives of this project are to conclude host-specificity testing of promising exotic natural enemies of BMSB on high-priority native pentatomids, and apply for release permits for those species that are specific to BMSB. Under the authority of 7 USC 3319a, ARS desires to acquire goods and personnel services from one of the Cooperators to further agricultural research supporting the independent interests of both parties. A subagreement will serve as an order for services to be funded on an annual basis.

Participate cooperatively with scientists at selected locations in the U.S. to assess exotic natural enemies for biological control of BMSB by: developing host test lists, establishing protocols for the evaluations, initiating colonies of native stink bugs to support host-specificity testing; providing biological control agents from USDA-ARS-BIIR cultures to cooperators, developing methods for conclusively identifying the agents including coordinating with taxonomists, and conducting host-specificity testing of candidate biological control agents to support petitions for filed release. (1) Coordinate cooperative research with project partners to assess host specificity and impact of exotic Asian natural enemies for biological control of BMSB on non-target species. (2) Collect NE regional native stink bugs from the field to supplement and maintain colonies for use in host-specificity testing, maintain quarantine cultures of Trissolcus species and deliver candidate biological control agents to cooperators for research in their regions. (3) Conclude physiological host-specificity testing and continue environmental and behavioral selectivity research for Trissolcus japonicus (Beijing population) and for Trissolcus cultratus. (4) Purity of research cultures will be monitored and newly-collected specimens from adventive field populations of Asian Trissolcus will be characterized. (5) Collect data on native natural enemies attacking BMSB as background information for petitions to release new exotic agents, and to document eventual impact of Asian parasitoids. Surveys will include wild egg masses and placement of colony-reared sentinel egg masses. (6) Prepare release petition for Trissolcus japonicus for submission to APHIS if the adventive population in the eastern states does not spread rapidly. (7) Field collections in Asia will document the natural host range of candidate Trissolcus species and levels of parasitism of non-target species in the native range of BMSB. (8) Field surveys in the mid-Atlantic States where adventive T. japonicus has been found will determine its current distribution and monitor its spread; and evaluation of its impact on BMSB and native pentatomids under field conditions will commence.