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English summary

Aim of the project

H. halys, a phytophagous pest originating in East Asia, is causing significant economic damage to crops such as apple, pear, peach, soybean and corn, as well as environmental and social damages. The control means tested so far have shown limited efficacy and application problems. The spread of T. japonicus, a parasitoid native to the areas of origin of H. halys, seems to be a way to restore an acceptable balance. The aim of the project is to identify effective strategies for the containment of the stink bug, to broaden the knowledge of the insect and its ecological dynamics and to systematise the information collected to formulate possible scenarios / predictive models on its management and contrast in Emilia Romagna, Italy.

Expected Results:

– analysis of the farm situation and of the conventional monitoring which will be integrated with new electronic systems that employ biometric and remote sensing principles and “citizen science” applications as well as new capture systems based on biotremology;

– analysis of the crops and habitat of the farm land context, including the phenology of the main blooms, implementation of perennial flowering strips, analysis and modeling of the dispersion of the antagonist and photographic surveys;

– development of forecasting tools and models;

– containment of the brown marmorated stink bug population by launches of the exotic antagonist T. japonicus and analysis of its persistence in the farm environment;

– raising awareness of farmers, and more generally of all citizens, on environmental protection, through dissemination and coaching actions.

Description of the activities:

The project will implement a management plan to combat the brown marmorated stink bug. The plan will  include: conventional monitoring actions integrated with new electronic and IT applications and new capture systems based on the integration of the aggregation pheromone with vibrational signals (Work Package 2); biological control actions (launches of the exotic antagonist T. japonicus) (Work Packages 1 and 4); interventions related to the enhancement of agrobiodiversity practices (Work Package 3); forecasting models (Work Package 3); and coaching and dissemination activities for farmers and citizens.