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    Environmental safety of entomopathogenic nematodes – Effects on abundance, diversity and community structure of non-target beetles in a forest ecosystem


    Dillon, Aoife B. and Foster, Aileen and Williams, Christopher D. and Griffin, Christine (2012) Environmental safety of entomopathogenic nematodes – Effects on abundance, diversity and community structure of non-target beetles in a forest ecosystem. Biological Control, 63 (2). pp. 107-114. ISSN 1049-9644

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    Abstract

    The large pine weevil, Hylobius abietis, is a serious threat to reforestation in Europe that necessitates routine use of chemical insecticides. Application of entomopathogenic nematodes (EPN) to the coniferous tree stumps in which weevils breed has the potential to reduce the use of chemical pesticides. During field trials to assess the efficacy of nematodes against pine weevil, non-target beetles were also identified and quantified on 10 sites (14 trials). Nematodes were applied to stumps between June and July. Emergence traps captured beetles exiting from nematode-treated and untreated control stumps. Four trials were monitored in the months immediately following nematode application and ten were monitored the year after nematode application. A total of 65 species of non-target beetles were recovered, including 11 saproxylic species. We found no evidence of an effect of applied EPN on non-target beetle species richness, abundance, species richness per individual collected, or Shannon’s entropy (H’) either immediately or a year after nematode application, when more wood-specialists were recorded. As expected, there were marked differences between sites and/or tree species in the populations of non-target beetles recovered. These results indicate that when EPN are applied in a forest ecosystem to suppress H. abietis populations, the risk to non-target coleopteran populations must be considered negligible.

    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: The definitive version of this article is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocontrol.2012.07.006
    Keywords: Saproxylic Coleoptera; Tree stump fauna; Non-target effects; Biological control;
    Academic Unit: Faculty of Science and Engineering > Biology
    Item ID: 4128
    Depositing User: Dr. Christine Griffin
    Date Deposited: 30 Jan 2013 14:28
    Journal or Publication Title: Biological Control
    Publisher: Elsevier
    Refereed: Yes
    URI:

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