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Wireworm Management in Horticultural Crops


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Slideshow presented at 2015 ACORN Conference PEI

Published in: Food
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Wireworm Management in Horticultural Crops

  1. 1. Wireworm management in horticultural crops Dr. Christine Noronha Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Charlottetown Research and Development Centre Presentation to ACORN November 25, 2015 - PEI
  2. 2. What are wireworms • Larvae of click beetles. • Several species cause crop damage. • An emerging pest worldwide. • Affect a wide variety of crops. • Can render root crops unmarketable. • Very limited means of control.
  3. 3. Lifecycle of Wireworms They pupate in the soil and emerge as adults in the spring. Lifecycle 5 years Spring-early summer Adults lay 100-200 eggs in the soil Spring – damage seeds and seedling roots Later Fall- hibernate in the soil. Return to the surface in the spring. Click beetles Larvae Fall damage root crops
  4. 4. 1 female lays 100-200 eggs If only 8 larvae survive to become adults in year five, with 4 females and four males each females produces 100-200 eggsFive years later Ten years later Population increase
  5. 5. • Agriotes sputator (NS, NB and PEI • Agriotes obscurus PEI and NS • Agriotes lineatus PEI and NS • Hypnoidus abbreviatus • Ctenicera pulchra • Dalopius sp European Species Other species 48 species of click beetles in PEI, 98 in NB and 101 NS Click Beetle Species
  6. 6. Where do they prefer to lay their eggs Sod fields Pasture fields Under-seeded Fields Undisturbed fields with green plant material are preferred Adults will also lay eggs in bare soil, egg survival may be compromised
  7. 7. Wireworm have an aggregated distribution in the field
  8. 8. MONITORING CLICK BEETLES • Wireworm populations have been closely monitored in PEI using pheromone traps. • Pheromones are chemical produced by females to attract males. • Pheromone are available for some of the European species. • Traps collect only male beetles.
  9. 9. Range of beetle numbers Prince County No. of Farms Queen County No. of Farms Kings county No. of Farms 2009 2012 2014 2009 2012 2014 2009 2012 2014 0 4 4 1 0 0 0 2 1 0 1-10 16 25 2 8 6 0 10 12 0 11-50 7 5 7 7 4 3 3 7 2 51-100 0 2 1 1 3 3 0 0 1 101-500 0 2 4 2 5 4 0 0 2 501-1000 0 0 2 0 5 2 0 0 1 >1000 0 1 0 0 3 5 0 0 0 Total # of beetles 214 1969 2812 1308 10,438 14,152 76 197 1298 Total per trap 7.9 50 83 72 401.46 416.23 5.4 9.8 108 Table 1. Comparisons of the number of farms with beetles numbers ranging for 0 - >1000 in 2009 and 2012, and 2014 for each county in Prince Edward Island. ** 500 beetles and over can result in crop failure.
  10. 10. 15% 5% 10% Incidence of wireworm reports across Canada 1% 5% 10% 10%
  11. 11. Potential to impact agriculture • Once infected, agricultural land will remain infected until adequate control measures to eliminate the larvae are implemented. • If wireworms are not controlled, the land may become a important source of adult beetle that will infest other fields. • Because of the wide host range, good agricultural land may become unsuitable for crop production.
  12. 12. • 5 year life cycle. • Soil dwelling. • Difficult to monitor because of aggregated field distribution. • Several generations in the same field. • Damage occurs in the spring and fall. • Feed on a wide variety of crop species – oats, wheat, barley, clover, corn, carrots, lettuce, onions, peas, potatoes, parsnips cabbage, beans, rutabagas etc.
  13. 13. Wireworm damage to various crops Cabbage Corn Crambe
  14. 14. Wireworm damage in root crops
  15. 15. Wireworms attack germinating seeds in the spring co2 co2 co2 co2
  16. 16. Plow-down of green material can result in increased damage
  17. 17. Plow-down of green material can result in increased damage
  18. 18. 18 Fig 1. Damage to tubers caused by wireworm feeding following a spring or fall plow-down of green sod
  20. 20. Wireworm research at AAFC Charlottetown: Crop Rotation Study To Reduce Wireworm Damage (funded by Pest Management Centre, 2007-2010) Brown Mustard, Buckwheat, Barley /Clover
  21. 21. Crop Rotation Crops Total Market yield (t/ha) Tubers with no Damage (t/ha) Average Number of Holes per tuber Tonnes/ha lost due to damage (for Processing) (t/ha) Tonnes/ha Marketable (for Processing) (t/ha) Brown Mustard 45.6 a1 16.2 a 04 a 0.5 a 45.1 a Buckwheat 45.9 a 12.6 a 06 a 2.6 a 43.3 a Barley 47.3 a 2.3 b 20 b 16.8 b 30.5 b Table 1. Total market yield, number of undamaged tubers, holes per tuber, tonnes per hectare lost due to wireworm damage and marketable yield for the processing market in a potato crop following a 2 year rotation with brown mustard, buckwheat, barley/clover or alfalfa at Hazelbrook in Prince Edward Island, Canada.
  22. 22. Why does Brown Mustard work? • Because the plant tissue has Allyl-glucosinolate (GTC) • When plant material starts to breakdown and enzyme Myronase reacts with the tissue to produce Isothiocynates (ITC) Glucosinolate Enzyme Myronase + Isothiosynate ITC
  23. 23. Why does Brown Mustard work? • The plant tissue has Allyl-glucosinolate (GTC) • 2-phenylethyl in its roots which is toxic to insects
  24. 24. • Brown Mustard (Brassicae juncea var. Centennial) 10lb/ac or 11.2kg/ha • Buckwheat (var Mancan) or 44.8kg/ha • 2 crops /year for 2 years • Fertilizer 300lb/ac or 335kg/ha 17:17:17 banded at planting in the spring • Plant early June Crop Rotation
  25. 25. • Brown Mustard (var Centennial) 8-10lb/ac or 11.2kg/ha • Buckwheat (var Mancan) or 44.8kg/ha • 2 crops /year • Fertilizer 300lb/ac or 335kg/ha 17:17:17 banded at planting in the spring • Plant early June • Disk the crop in late July before seeds mature Crop Rotation
  27. 27. Crop Rotation • After two-three weeks harrow the field to level it • Depending on the seeder you may need to roll it before planting, mainly because you don’t want the mustard seed planted too deep • Do not need to add fertilizer for the second planting
  28. 28. Crop Rotation • The 2nd crop should go in by the mid-late August • Wireworms come to the surface to feed by mid to late September • You want the crop established and producing the chemicals • This second crop does not need to be disked as it will act as ground cover and will not produce seeds
  29. 29. Buckwheat as ground cover in the fall (PEI)
  30. 30. Brown Mustard as ground cover in the fall (PEI)
  31. 31. Buckwheat as ground cover in the fall (PEI)
  32. 32. Brown Mustard as ground cover in the fall (PEI)
  33. 33. Dr. Christin Noronha Buckwheat as ground cover in the fall (PEI)
  34. 34. Brown Mustard as ground cover in the fall (PEI)
  35. 35. Treat the brown mustard and buckwheat like a crop
  36. 36. Using brown mustard as a nurse crop Brown Mustard was planted in the potato rows at 5 different seeding dates throughout over the Summer.
  37. 37. Seeding date July 14 Seeding date July 30 Seeding date Aug 13 Seeding date Aug 20 Seeding date Aug 28 Growth of Brown mustard planted in the potato row on September 16
  38. 38. Figure 1. Number of blemishes caused by wireworm feeding in plots planted with brown mustard as a nurse crop on 5 different dates during the growing season 2015 a ab abab ab b
  40. 40. 42 Twenty varieties and six replicates per variety
  41. 41. 43 Figure 2. Mean number of blemishes (holes+scars) in different potato varieties grown without an insecticide application to protect against wireworm damage
  42. 42. BIOLOGICAL CONTROL RESEARCH Todd Kabaluk AAFC- Agassiz, BC
  43. 43. X X Can Metarhizium control wireworms by controlling click beetles? (in the years leading up to planting potatoes) X First of all, is Metarhizium even pathogenic to the adult beetles? Tests in the lab say YES
  44. 44. Metarhizium spore dust Metarhizium spore spray What about in the field? Metarhizium spore granules
  45. 45. Conidia spray Conidia dust Conidia granules Number of days after treatment % beetle mortality Matador (λ – cyhalothrin) -spray positive control Application of Metarhizium spores kills click beetles in the field
  46. 46. The Concept – Attracting Beetles to Bands of Biocontrols using Pheromone Granules
  47. 47. Click beetles recaptured 16 days post-treatment Pheromone granules synergize the efficacy of Metarhizium when targeting A. obscurus click beetles using a banded application Mean number + s.e. of beetles per passive pitfall trap (mean of 8 traps in each of 5 replications =40 traps/data point) Untreated Dead Metarhizium Almost all beetles killed
  48. 48. STRATEGIES TO REDUCE DAMAGE 1. Find out if you have wireworms in your field. 2. If you work up a long term sod field do not plant a valuable crop the first year. 3. Plant brown mustard (Brassice juncea var Centennial) or buckwheat (var.Mancan) as a rotation crop as shown above. 4. Try not to plant a preferred host such as grain every year. 5. For root crops harvest early before wireworms come up to the surface to feed in the fall.
  49. 49. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada • PEI Department of Agriculture • PEI Potato Board • PEI Horticulture Association
  50. 50. Contact information - Phone 902-370-1374