Key Pests and Parasitoids of Oilseed Rape or Canola in North America and the Importance of Parasitoids in Integrated Management

Chapter

Abstract

The development of ‘double low oilseed rape’ or canola as a unique crop in the mid 1970s resulted in rapid expansion in the area devoted to its production in North America, especially in the western Canadian provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The crop was soon subjected to attack by a number of insect herbivores, sometimes responsible for severe economic losses. The key pests of the crop comprise the flea beetles Phyllotreta cruciferae (Goeze) and Phyllotreta striolata (Fabricius), several root maggot species especially Delia radicum (L.), cabbage seedpod weevil, Ceutorhynchus obstrictus (Marsham), bertha armyworm, Mamestra configurata Walker, several species of lygus bugs, Lygus spp., and the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella (L.). Most pest species are alien, introduced from Europe or Asia, and as a consequence they have been the subject of importation and release of non-indigenous parasitoids in attempts to achieve classical biological control. To date, such attempts have met with limited success, but nevertheless substantial progress has been made in certain situations. This chapter reviews the life history and crop damage caused by each of the key pest species, and the parasitoid fauna associated with each. Attempts at classical or augmentative biological control of the pests are documented, and a case history is provided for one invasive species, the cabbage seedpod weevil. Challenges to biological control with parasitoids are identified for North American cropping systems.

Keywords

Classical biological control Cultural control Integrated crop management Invasive alien species 

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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science4-10 Agriculture-Forestry Centre, University of AlbertaEdmontonCanada
  2. 2.Research CentreAgriculture and Agri-Food CanadaOttawaCanada

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