Why is this research important for Alberta ag?
The pea leaf weevil is a significant pest of field peas and faba beans around the world. The pea leaf weevil can cause economic damage due to feeding by adults on foliage in the spring and larvae on the root nodules, but is considered a key pest of pulse crops due to larval feeding damage.
The pea leaf weevil has recently become established in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Current monitoring of the pea leaf weevil by the Prairie Pest Monitoring Network is based on labour-intensive assessment of the characteristic "notch" feeding damage caused by adult weevils in the spring.
This research tests the hypothesis that pea leaf weevil flight activity is impacted bty internal and external factors taht may vary during the spring and fall activity periods.
What benefits can producers expect from this research?
This research aims to increase the functionality of the developed pheromone-based monitoring system and help pulse producers to position monitoring traps and other scouting techniques at appropriate distances within the pulse agroecosystems across the province.
This research will help understand the importance of environmental conditions experienced in pulse production systems on pea leaf weevil dispersal by flight. It will also determine if there is a trade-off between dispersal and reproduction in pea leaf weevils, helping understand the population dynamics of this invasive species.
How will these research findings reach producers on-farm?
All prairie pulse growers will be updated on research findings on weevil dispersal as they relate to the establishment of monitoring systems, weevil control, and weevil range expansion. Research updates will take the form of in-person communications, publications in grower magazines (Pulse Crop News, Top Crop Manager, Western Producer), research updates on grower organization websites (Alberta Pulse Growers Commission, Saskatchewan Pulse Growers), Annual Reports, field days, and social media.
Funded in part by the Government of Canada under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.