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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Kearneysville, West Virginia » Appalachian Fruit Research Laboratory » Innovative Fruit Production, Improvement, and Protection » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #328826

Title: Measuring host plant selection and retention of Halyomorpha halys by a trap crop

item BLAAUW, BRETT - Rutgers University
item Morrison, William - Rob
item MATHEWS, CLARISSA - Shepherd University
item Leskey, Tracy
item NIELSEN, ANNE - Rutgers University

Submitted to: Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/23/2016
Publication Date: 4/15/2017
Citation: Blaauw, B.R., Morrison III, W.R., Mathews, C., Leskey, T.C., Nielsen, A. 2017. Measuring host plant selection and retention of Halyomorpha halys by a trap crop. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata. 163:197-208.

Interpretive Summary: Trap cropping is a management technique that takes advantage of the movement of a pest and its relationship with its host plants. In this study, we used a combination of visual sampling, protein-marking, and harmonic radar to track dispersal of the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) between a trap crop composed of sunflower plus sorghum and a cash crop consisting of organic bell peppers. While visual sampling did not reveal any differences, four times more stink bugs were collected in the trap crop compared with the cash crop for protein analysis. The protein-marking demonstrated that there was negligible movement of stink bugs between the trap crop and cash crop. Tracking the stink bugs with harmonic radar revealed that they were retained for a longer time in the trap crop and they moved a shorter distance in the trap crop compared to the cash crop, suggesting that the trap crop is a superior host for BMSB. Overall, our results suggest trap cropping may be an effective management tool for BMSB in the United States.

Technical Abstract: Trap cropping may exploit a pest’s dispersal behavior and relationship with its hosts in order to protect a desired crop. Here, we used a combination of visual sampling, immunomarking, and harmonic radar to assess host plant selection and retention time of the highly mobile and invasive Halyomorpha halys (Stål), as it moves within and between a sunflower plus sorghum trap crop and a bell pepper cash crop. Visual sampling resulted in no significant differences in H. halys densities across crops, whereas, dislodging stink bugs to collect for protein analysis revealed approximately four times more bugs in the trap crop plants than the peppers. A total of 145 H. halys were collected and of these, 6% were dually-marked with proteins demonstrating that while movement occurred between the two planting systems, this movement was minimal. The harmonic radar revealed that the trap crop retained adult H. halys within the plots 1.5 times longer and reduced their movement by nearly half compared to bugs released in the peppers. The data suggests the trap crop of sunflower plus sorghum has the potential to attract and arrest the invasive H. halys, demonstrating that trap cropping may operate as an effective management tool.