Surface Wax Variation in Peas and Biological Control of the Pea Aphid
The effectiveness of biological control agents can be limited by several factors, including characteristics of the crop plant that may interfere with their foraging for prey. Identifying these factors and ways to reduce their impact on beneficial insects is an important endeavor to increase sustainability and reduce insecticide use in agriculture. This project will examine the effects of reduced waxy bloom in peas on beneficial insects. Prior NRI-funded work has shown that this occurs for certain predators. This project will examine the effects of pea wax bloom on parasitoids and on potential synergistic interactions between foliar predators and ground beetles.