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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Pullman, Washington » Plant Germplasm Introduction and Testing Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #228345

Title: Pea weevil, Bruchus pisorum (L.) (Coleoptera: Bruchidae), resistance in Pisum sativum x P. fulvum interspecific crosses

item Clement, Stephen
item McPhee, Kevin
item Elberson, Leslie
item EVANS, M

Submitted to: Plant Breeding
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/12/2008
Publication Date: 1/22/2009
Citation: Clement, S.L., Mcphee, K.E., Elberson, L.R., Evans, M.A. 2009. Pea weevil, Bruchus pisorum (L.) (Coleoptera: Bruchidae), resistance in Pisum sativum x P. fulvum interspecific crosses. Plant Breeding. Online, doi:10.1111/j.1439-0523.2008.01603.x.

Interpretive Summary: The pea weevil is a primary limiting factor for field pea production in eastern Washington and northern Idaho where producers use contact insecticides to control adults before larvae from eggs on pods start feeding on developing seeds. This feeding activity reduces crop yield. Research to reduce control costs and to provide an environmentally safer option that contact insecticides for weevil control has led to searches for pod and seed resistance in pea germplasm. The discovery of pea weevil resistance in wild peas has led to the development of hybrid peas at the USDA, ARS Plant Germplasm Introduction and Testing Research Unit, Pullman, Washington, with weevil resistance. This paper describes the successful development of these hybrid peas from genetic crosses involving susceptible pea cultivars and resistant wild pea accessions stored in the USDA, ARS seedbank at Pullman, Washington. This reseach is important because it demonstrates the usefulness of wild peas for pest resistance and their usefulness to pea breeding programs, and the necessity of conserving crop genetic resources in seedbanks of the U.S. National Plant Germplasm System for American and world agriculture. The impact of this research, to date, has been distribution of the resistant material to pea breeders in Europe and Australia, and the transfer of resistant hybrid pea germplasm to the USDA, ARS Grain Legume Genetics Physiology Research, Pullman, Washington.

Technical Abstract: The pea weevil, Bruchus pisorum (L.), is one of the most intractable pest problems of cultivated pea, Pisum sativum L., in the world. This study investigated the transfer of pea weevil resistance from two accessions (PI 595946, PI 343955) of wild pea, Pisum fulvum Sibth. & Sm., to interspecific populations derived from crossing these accessions with a weevil-susceptible pea cultivar (‘Alaska 81’). Partial life tables characterized weevil stage-specific mortality and survivorship on parents and interspecific progeny in two glasshouse trials. Larval mortality rates on pods (F3 plants) of several F2:3 families were between 36.01 and 52.88%. These means were statistically similar to mean mortality rates on pods of resistant parents (45.35 and 46.17%), but significantly greater than mean rates on the susceptible parent (1.16 and 10.6%). Pod surface characteristics contributed to high neonate larval mortality on pods of resistant parents and interspecific progeny. Strong seed resistance was not broadly transferred to interspecific progeny (revealed by high weevil survivorship in seeds [means mostly > 80%] and high seed damage ratings [means > 4.0, scale of 1 to 5]); however, F4 seed in a few F3 plants in one F2:3 family exhibited strong seed resistance. Estimates of total weevil mortality on pods and seeds of eight F2:3 families were 50-70%. Thus, weevil resistance in the Pisum secondary gene pool can be transferred to interspecific progeny, thereby providing a potential avenue to develop weevil-resistant pea cultivars.