- Sterile insect technique for navel orangeworm
- Pheromone and related attractants for leaffooted bugs
Overwintering biology and cultural controls for walnut husk fly
Walnut husk fly (Tephritidae: Rhagoletis completa) (WHF) is a key pest of walnuts. This univoltine fly overwinters as a pupa in the soil. Adults emerge in the summer, oviposit into walnut husks and larval feeding reduces crop quality and yield. In the fall, larvae drop from the nuts and pupate in the soil. My lab is leading a project to identify key factors that lead to increased mortality of WHF larvae and overwintering pupae, with the goal of developing practices to reduce overwintering success. This is a collaborative project that involves Statewide Area IPM Advisors Jhalendra Rijal (North San Joaquin Valley) and Emily Symmes (Sacramento Valley).
- Mating disruption of navel orangeworm in figs
Aggregation pheromones to monitor driedfruit beetle in figs
Driedfruit beetle (Nitidulidae: Carpophilus hemipterus) (DFB) is a primary pest of figs. This polyphagous beetle has 10-12 generations per year. Feeding causes direct damage to figs and can introduce bacteria and fungi that spoil fruit. My lab is evaluating the efficacy of experimental DFB aggregation pheromones to improve monitoring and possibly develop an attract-and-kill program.
Trap crops to control large plant bugs in pistachio
A pistachio grower with significant organic acreage expressed interest in the use of trap crops to monitor and control large plant bugs, such as LFB and various pentatomids (Thyanta pallidovirens, Chinavia uhleri, Chlorochroa hilare). These pests are all known to feed on various weedy vegetation that in some cases may be more attractive than pistachios, and my lab is currently evaluating the ability of a mustard, radish and alfalfa trap crop to reduce large bug populations and crop damage. This is in collaboration with Dr. Kent Daane (UC Berkeley, Kearney Ag. Center) and is part of the dissertation for PhD student Rob Straser.
- Influence of orchard habitat diversification on navel orangeworm in almonds
Cannabis IPM Survey
As a “new” commodity in the CA agricultural landscape, cannabis production will become subject to the same regulatory pressures as other specialty crops like almonds, grapes and citrus. Improper pesticide use, amongst other production practices, is likely leading to negative environmental impacts. As such, the development of IPM programs and non-chemical strategies will be a research priority. My lab recently led an effort to survey cannabis growers across the state to characterize production practices in CA. This research will soon be featured in a special edition of California Agriculture. This project is a collaboration that I organized with UC Berkeley faculty (Dr. Van Butsic, Dr. Ted Grantham, Dr. Christy Getz, Dr. Kent Daane) and The Nature Conservancy (Dr. Jennifer Carah).Cannabis Production Survey: https://ucanr.edu/sites/Cannabis/
I remain involved in research and extension efforts to improve biological control of the invasive Virginia creeper leafhopper (Cicadellidae: Erythroneura ziczac) as well as evaluate the ecology and transmission efficiency of insect vectors of grape vine red blotch-associated virus (GRBaV).Virginia Creeper Leafhopper Area-wide IPM Project: https://ucanr.edu/sites/vclh/