Mission:

Developing Integrated Pest Management Programs for Insects in the Western Triangle Agricultural Region of Montana

Research Objectives:

1. Exploratory research on pea weevil and cabbage seed pod weevil

2. Biological control of wheat stem sawfly, flea beetles and wireworms

3. Monitoring technologies using pheromone based trapping for pea leaf weevil

4. Introduction and assessment of new parasitoids for wheat midge

5. Surveying a pea weevil in Hi-Line and North Central areas of Montana

6. Evaluation of effectiveness of biological insecticides for the management of alfalfa weevil

Current Research Projects:

Wheat stem sawfly:

Evaluation of commercially available entomopathogenic nematodes and carrier solutions against wheat stem sawfly

Investigation of the prevalence of the entomopathogenic fungus, Beauveria spp., in diapausing wheat stem sawfly larvae

Wireworms:

Evaluation of trap crops for the management of wireworms on spring wheat

Evaluation of commercially available biological insecticides for management of wireworms on spring wheat

Wheat  midge:

Introduction of two parasitoids Platygaster tuberosula and Euxestonotus error from Saskatchewan to Montana for the control of wheat midges

Determine the prevalence and establishment of P. tuberosula and E. error at different wheat field sites

Conduct the laboratory host range assessment of carabid beetles for potential use of biological control agent for orange wheat midges

Flea beetles and cabbage seed pod weevils:

Evaluation of commercially available entomopathogenic nematodes and polymer gel against crucifer flea beetles and cabbage seed pod weevils on canola

Pea leaf weevil:

Develop an efficient pheromone trap for catching pea leaf weevil

Implement and evaluate effectiveness of mass trapping as a management tool for pea leaf weevil

Pea weevil:

Survey of pea weevil in Hi-Line and North Central areas of Montana

Assessment of damage distribution and abundance of pea weevil

Alfalfa weevil:

Monitor the pest status under local environmental conditions, to determine the best time to treat.

Evaluate the efficacy of various biological insecticides against alfalfa weevils at different developmental stages under laboratory and field conditions.