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Legarrea S.,Institute Ciencias Agrarias ICA | Legarrea S.,University of Georgia | Velazquez E.,Technical University of Madrid | Velazquez E.,University Intercultural Of Chiapas Unich | And 10 more authors.
BioControl | Year: 2014

In the search for a durable pest control management, biological control agents and photoselective covers are suitable candidates to be implemented in greenhouse crops. In this work, we studied the effects of a 50 mesh photoselective cover compared to a standard with similar characteristics but without UV-absorbing additives on the performance of Aphidius ervi Haliday (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), a widely used parasitoid to control aphids in vegetable crops. Four field experiments were conducted in La Poveda Experimental Farm (Central Spain) where a lettuce crop was grown during the years 2008-2010. Lettuce plants were infested by Macrosiphum euphorbiae (Thomas) (Hemiptera: Aphididae) and the parasitoid A. ervi was released and monitored throughout the crop cycle to evaluate any constraint in its performance produced by UV-absorbing nets. The ability of A. ervi to find and parasitize the host was not modified by the photoselective cover during the four seasons studied. Thus, we suggest that both strategies could be combined in the context of IPM in vegetable crops where this natural enemy is released. © 2014 International Organization for Biological Control (IOBC).

Dader B.,Institute Ciencias Agrarias ICA CSIC | Dader B.,Associated unit IVAS CSIC UPM | Legarrea S.,Institute Ciencias Agrarias ICA CSIC | Legarrea S.,Associated unit IVAS CSIC UPM | And 12 more authors.
Pest Management Science | Year: 2015

BACKGROUND: Long-lasting insecticide-treated nets (LLITNs) constitute a novel alternative that combines physical and chemical tactics to prevent insect access and the spread of insect-transmitted plant viruses in protected enclosures. This approach is based on a slow-release insecticide-treated net with large hole sizes that allow improved ventilation of greenhouses. The efficacy of a wide range of LLITNs was tested under laboratory conditions against Myzus persicae, Aphis gossypii and Bemisia tabaci. Two nets were selected for field tests under a high insect infestation pressure in the presence of plants infected with Cucumber mosaic virus and Cucurbit aphid-borne yellows virus. The efficacy of Aphidius colemani, a parasitoid commonly used for biological control of aphids, was studied in parallel field experiments. RESULTS: LLITNs produced high mortality of aphids, although their efficacy decreased over time with sun exposure. Certain nets excluded whiteflies under laboratory conditions; however, they failed in the field. Nets effectively blocked the invasion of aphids and reduced the incidence of viruses in the field. The parasitoid A. colemani was compatible with LLITNs. CONCLUSION: LLITNs of appropriate mesh size can become a very valuable tool in combination with biocontrol agents for additional protection against insect vectors of plant viruses under IPM programmes. © 2014 Society of Chemical Industry.

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