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Biocontrol of Spider Mites in California Strawberry Production

Howell, Anna D., Daugovish, Oleg
International journal of fruit science 2016 v.16 no.sup1 pp. 169-177
Amblyseius andersoni, Eotetranychus, Neoseiulus californicus, Phytoseiulus persimilis, Tetranychus urticae, biological control, economic threshold, field experimentation, growing season, predation, predatory mites, strawberries, California
Field experiments were conducted in 2013 and 2014 to evaluate the predation efficacy of four commercially available predatory mites (Phytoseiidae): Phytoseiulus persimilis, Neoseiulus californicus, N. fallacis , and Amblyseius andersoni , for control of twospotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae Koch) and Lewis spider mite (Eotetranychus lewisi) in strawberries. In the 2013 experiment, a grower standard treatment (P. persimilis and N. californicus) was compared to single treatments of each phytoseiid species. The 2014 experiment excluded N. fallacis as a treatment, but all other treatments are the same as in 2013. For both seasons, all treatments decreased both two-spotted and Lewis spider mite populations immediately after releases equivalently. However, none of the treatments tested were able to keep twospotted and Lewis spider mite populations below the economic threshold level. These findings indicate that several releases will be needed throughout the growing season in order to maintain spider mite levels below the economic thresholds.