In­sect man­age­ment sup­port

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - Ag Life -

Grain grow­ers and ad­vis­ers have in­sect-man­age­ment sup­port to help them plan crop pest con­trol in 2018 and be­yond.

Grains Re­search and De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion has re­leased an up­dated ver­sion of I SPY, a com­pre­hen­sive iden­ti­fi­ca­tion man­ual on in­sects of south­ern and western broad­acre farm­ing sys­tems of Aus­tralia.

Now avail­able on­line at grdc., the man­ual cov­ers ba­sic tax­on­omy, im­por­tant in­sect groups and iden­ti­fi­ca­tion keys and descriptio­ns of com­mon species, as well as in­for­ma­tion on mon­i­tor­ing, in­te­grated pest man­age­ment, IPM, prin­ci­ples and biose­cu­rity.

The up­dated man­ual in­cludes the lat­est in­for­ma­tion on cul­tural, bi­o­log­i­cal and chem­i­cal con­trol op­tions for more than 40 pests. This in­cludes the ad­di­tion of the African black bee­tle, as well as the Rus­sian wheat aphid, which has be­come es­tab­lished in Aus­tralia.

The new edi­tion also in­cludes up-to-date in­for­ma­tion on emerg­ing in­sec­ti­cide re­sis­tance is­sues and links to new re­sources re­gard­ing re­sis­tance man­age­ment, IPM strate­gies and eco­nomic thresh­olds.

Man­ual co-au­thor Dr Paul Umina, of ce­sar re­search or­gan­i­sa­tion and the Univer­sity of Mel­bourne, said I SPY high­lighted the im­por­tance of in­sect iden­ti­fi­ca­tion in in­form­ing sound and sus­tain­able pest man­age­ment de­ci­sion-mak­ing by grow­ers and their ad­vis­ers.

“Cor­rect iden­ti­fi­ca­tion is im- por­tant for ef­fec­tive con­trol, pre­vent­ing in­sec­ti­cide mis­use and po­ten­tial in­creases in in­ci­dences of re­sis­tance,” he said.

“In­cor­rect iden­ti­fi­ca­tion lead to costly mis­takes.”

The man­ual was de­signed and pro­duced through the Na­tional In­ver­te­brate Pest Ini­tia­tive, with in­put from nu­mer­ous state agri­cul­tural de­part­ments, ce­sar and The Univer­sity of Mel­bourne.

It aims to in­crease aware­ness and knowl­edge of ma­jor broad­acre pest and ben­e­fi­cial species; the abil­ity of users to iden­tify key in­ver­te­brates to or­der or fam­ily level; fa­mil­iar­ity with in­ver­te­brate life­cy­cles and bi­ol­ogy; fa­mil­iar­ity with sam­pling and mon­i­tor­ing tech­niques; un­der­stand­ing of pest con­trol prin­ci­ples; aware­ness of the role of bi­o­log­i­cal and cul­tural pest con- can trol; and aware­ness of biose­cu­rity and sur­veil­lance.

With key crop­ping pests such as di­a­mond­back moth, red­legged earth mite, some aphids and sev­eral grain-stor­age pest in­sects de­vel­op­ing re­sis­tance to var­i­ous in­sec­ti­cides, the grains in­dus­try recog­nises the need to move to­wards strate­gic and al­ter­na­tive con­trol op­tions that bet­ter tar­get the pests of con­cern.

Dr Pir­tle said in­te­grat­ing a range of ef­fec­tive and sus­tain­able pest-man­age­ment strate­gies would re­move re­liance on any sin­gle method of con­trol in the fu­ture.

“I SPY out­lines man­age­ment op­tions that can be im­ple­mented to as­sist grow­ers in re­duc­ing their re­liance on broad-spec­trum chem­i­cals for pest con­trol in their crop­ping sys­tems,” she said.

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