The effect of local and landscape variables on Mediterranean fruit fly dynamics in citrus orchards utilizing the ecoinformatics approach
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The Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata (Wied.) (Diptera: Tephritidae) (medfly), is a major pest among all varieties of citrus. Despite advances in recent years, knowledge about the effects of various variables on the spatiotemporal spread of the medfly is still limited. The goal of this study was to characterize the effects of various local and landscape variables on the population density of medfly in citrus orchards in Israel, utilizing the ecoinformatics approach. Data were collected during three citrus growing seasons (years). The medfly population data consisted of a weekly inspection of ~ 2300 traps. Thirteen potentially explanatory variables believed to influence the medfly populations were quantified. The contributions of the explanatory variables were analyzed using multimodel inference. Results show that the medfly population is affected by both local and landscape variables. Further analysis was focused on the data from November (representing the fall peak) and April (representing the beginning of the spring peak). The major findings were: Medfly population was higher in plots that were closer to human communicates, presumably due to their proximity to private gardens; the medfly population was negatively affected by the proportion of the surrounding crop; larger plots with lower perimeter-to-area ratio and plots inside large citrus clusters had smaller populations of medflies; variety had inconsistent effect; and elevation showed inverse response (positive in November and negative in April). Additionally, during the fall peak, the medfly population was positively affected by the proportion of the surrounding deciduous orchards and negatively affected by pest aerial spraying rounds up to a certain number. The results of this study demonstrate that the medfly populations in citrus are affected by the composition of the external landscape. Thus, similar to other studies, this study encourages the adoption of area-wide integrated pest management protocols.
KeywordsArea-wide integrated pest management Ecoinformatics Multivariable analysis Spatiotemporal analysis Ceratitis capitata
This work was supported by a grant from the Chief Scientist of the Israeli Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, awarded to Lior Blank and Yafit Cohen (Grant No. 132-1830). The work is a contribution of the Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Center, Israel, No. XXX/18.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
All authors declare that he/she has no conflict of interest.
This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.
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