News and Reviews

Biological Control of Silverleaf Whitefly on Greenhouse Poinsettia

Trying to implement a plan to control silverleaf whitefly on poinsettia in the greenhouse with parasites? The University of Massachusetts extension publication A Growers Guide to Using Biological Control for Silverleaf Whitefly on Poinsettias in the Northeast United States provides excellent information on the pest and it's commercially available natural enemies. The somewhat confused identity of silverleaf whitefly is explained in a short historical review. Several characteristics to distinguish this pest from the greenhouse whitefly are described, since you'd use different natural enemies for the two whitefly species. And to understand how the parasites interact with the pest, the basic biology and life cycle of whiteflies is presented.

The two main commercially available natural enemies of whiteflies are well described, and research trial results are provided to support their recommendation of using Eretmocerus sp. Most helpful are the practical guidelines that outline what growers need to do, including a formula to calculate the number of wasps needed to treat a greeenhouse. Although the publication is for poinsettia growers, it would be a good starting point for implementing biological control of whiteflies on other crops as well.

This 4-page publication also includes 2 inserts: one with 8 color photographs of whiteflies and their parasitoids, and another of color diagrams of whitefly and parasitoid life cycles.

To order a copy contact :

Roy Van Driesche
Department of Entomology
University of Massachusetts
Amherst, MA 01003
(413) 545-1056
fax: 545-6555

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