The strawberry plant is a host for 30 aphid species, and whilst control of aphid pests has historically relied upon conventional synthetic insecticides, this situation is changing. Reasons for this change include widespread insecticide resistance, approvals for conventional synthetic insecticides being withdrawn and concerns about the impact of synthetic pesticides on the environment and human health. These reasons together with pressure from consumers and retailers to reduce the use of synthetic pesticides are leading growers to consider alternative control options. Previous research has highlighted the efficacy of biopesticides, including those based on plant extracts, known as botanical biopesticides, against aphid pests. It has been suggested that botanical biopesticides may complement or even replace conventional synthetic pesticides. The role of parasitoid wasps and other natural enemies in controlling aphid pest populations has also been well established. However, there is a lack of published research exploring the compatibility of these two measures within an integrated pest management programme.
Objectives (how the central hypothesis will be tested):
Collaborative Training Partnership for Fruit Crop Research (CTP FCR) funded by BBSRC and Industry
Harper Adams University