Improved conservation of natural enemies with selective management systems for Bemisia tabaci (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) in cotton

Steven E. Naranjo, James R. Hagler, Peter C. Ellsworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

38 Scopus citations


A large-scale study was conducted in 1996 to evaluate and demonstrate strategies for pest management of Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) in cotton involving different insecticide regimes, application methods, and action thresholds. Here we examined the effects of the various management systems on the abundance and activity of native natural enemies. Population densities of 18 out of 20 taxa of arthropod predators were significantly higher in regimes initiated with the insect growth regulators (IGRs) buprofezin (chitin inhibitor) or pyriproxyfen (juvenile hormone analog) compared with a regime dependent on a rotation of conventional, broad-spectrum insecticides. There were no differences in predator density between the two IGR regimes, and generally no effects due to application method or action threshold level. Predator to prey ratios were significantly higher in regimes utilizing the two IGRs compared with the conventional regime, but were unaffected by application method or threshold level. Rates of parasitism by Eretmocerus eremicus Rose and Zolnerowich and Encarsia meritoria Gahan were higher in the IGR regimes compared with the conventional regime, but were unaffected by insecticide application method, or the action threshold used to initiate applications of the IGRs. Results demonstrate the selective action of these two IGRs and suggest that their use may enhance opportunities for conservation biological control in cotton systems affected by B. tabaci, especially relative to conventional insecticide alternatives.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)571-587
Number of pages17
JournalBiocontrol Science and Technology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 1 2003



  • Aphelinid parasitoids
  • Arthropod predators
  • Bemisia argentifolii
  • Bemisia tabaci
  • Conservation biological control
  • Insect growth regulators
  • Principal response curves

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Insect Science

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