The spotted wing drosophila (SWD) is a particularly challenging pest for the berry sector due to its high egg-laying potential and end-of-season population explosion (near harvest time). Insecticides have limited ability to reach the larvae, which are buried in the fruit. In Québec, the battle against SWD generally involves repeated and alternating applications of insecticides that are also toxic to pollinators and, in some cases, pose significant risks to human health and the environment. The release of sterile insects is a promising and environmentally friendly pest control measure that can lessen the deleterious effects of SWD on berry crops. Furthermore, the Québec association for strawberry and raspberry producers (APFFQ) supports the development of this method as a research priority for the strawberry and raspberry sectors.
To follow up on the developmental work begun in 2014, we will
From 2018 to 2021
Pest, weed, and disease control
This project will encourage growers to adopt biological control methods and lead to reduced pesticide use.
The data generated by this project was used to develop a new NPK fertilization chart that reflects technical, agronomic, and environmental issues.
Researcher: Christine Landry
As part of this project, the soil water status at a chosen blueberry farm will be monitored at 40 spots over the course of the production year. We will seek to identify the relationship between water extraction, physicochemical and environmental factors, and yield levels that could help explain yield variability.
Researcher: Carl Boivin
The project consisted of sterilizing spotted wing drosophilas in the laboratory and mass releasing it in crops as a biocontrol method.
Researcher: Annabelle Firlej