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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Wapato, Washington » Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research » Research » Research Project #440374

Research Project: Areawide Management of Insect Vectors in the Columbia Basin of Oregon

Location: Temperate Tree Fruit and Vegetable Research

Project Number: 2092-22000-022-022-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jun 1, 2021
End Date: May 31, 2024

The overall goal of this project is to develop models to predict outbreaks of plant pathogens and insect vectors in vegetable crops of the Columbia Basin of Washington and Oregon. Specific objectives include 1) identify non-crop hosts of insect vectors and plant pathogens, 2) determine the non-crop sources of infective insect vectors that first colonize vegetable crops, 3) develop forecast models to predict vector and pathogen outbreaks, and 4) expand the areawide monitoring network to include the full diversity of vegetable crops grown in the region.

Insect vectors including potato psyllids, beet leafhoppers, and aphids will be collected using sweep-nets and traps from cultivated and uncultivated habitats in the Columbia Basin. Leaves of vector hosts will also be collected. Diagnostic PCR will be used to identify the presence of pathogens and molecular gut content analysis will be used to identify previous dietary history of the vectors. Laboratory assays will be used to confirm susceptibility of non-crop weeds to insect vectors and pathogens. Data on incidence of plant pathogens will be integrated with current models to forecast vector density and to produce maps of disease risk. Regular meetings will be held to disseminate information and to seek feedback from stakeholders.