Influence of beetle banks on cereal aphid predation in winter wheat

  • Published source details Collins K.L, Boatman N.D, Wilcox A, Holland J.M & Chaney K (2002) Influence of beetle banks on cereal aphid predation in winter wheat. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, 93, 337-350.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Create beetle banks

Action Link
Natural Pest Control
  1. Create beetle banks

    A replicated, randomised study in 1996 in a winter wheat Triticum sp. field in Leicestershire, UK (Collins et al. 2002) found significantly more cereal aphids Sitobion avenae 83 m away from a beetle bank than 8 m away during the peak infestation period. Aphid numbers were 34% higher at the peak infestation period when predators, including ground beetles (Carabidae), rove beetles (Staphylinidae), money spiders (Linyphiidae) and wolf spiders (Lycosidae), were excluded. Ground beetle species typical of open field habitats were most abundant near the beetle bank before the peak aphid infestation period, while species typical of boundary habitats were most abundant near the beetle bank in April, showing a slow movement from the bank into the crop. The 400 m long (2.5 m wide x 0.5 m high) beetle bank was established in 1992 in 7.48 ha of an 18.3 ha field. The field was divided into four 100 m blocks containing a control area, and a predator-exclusion area (both 7 x 8 m) at 8, 33, 58 and 83 m from the bank. Aphids were counted twice a week on 20 labelled wheat tillers in each area (2 July-16 August) and on 10 ears of wheat each week (25 July-19 August). Arthropod predators were also counted on the 10 ears of wheat, and in three pitfall traps/area once a week from April-July.

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