Effect of population density of the Azolla weevil (Stenopelmus rufinasus) on the surface cover of the water fern (Azolla filiculoides) in the UK

Effect of population density of the Azolla weevil (Stenopelmus rufinasus) on the surface cover of... Azolla filiculoides Lamarck (Azollaceae) (water fern), is an invasive floating macrophyte capable of rapid growth leading to the complete coverage of water surfaces. The North American weevil Stenopelmus rufinasus, Gyllenhal (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) is a biological control agent that has become naturalised in the UK. To determine the effects of the weevil on A. filiculoides in ‘semi-controlled’ conditions, weevils were introduced at four stocking densities into outdoor floating tanks containing A. filiculoides. The introduction of weevils at all densities resulted in a significant decline in percentage cover of A. filiculoides compared to the control. Increasing weevil stocking density resulted in a more rapid reduction in the area of green A. filiculoides. The highest stocking density of 400 weevils per m2 caused complete kill within a month of introduction. The UK summer provides conditions that are suitable for weevil reproduction and herbivory, and even the lowest stocking density of weevils tested (100 weevils per m2) can have a substantial impact on the surface cover of A. filiculoides. Although the weevil is effective in summer, augmentation is required annually for reliable control. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png BioControl Springer Journals

Effect of population density of the Azolla weevil (Stenopelmus rufinasus) on the surface cover of the water fern (Azolla filiculoides) in the UK

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Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright
Copyright © 2018 by International Organization for Biological Control (IOBC)
Subject
Life Sciences; Entomology; Plant Pathology; Agriculture; Animal Ecology; Animal Biochemistry; Behavioral Sciences
ISSN
1386-6141
eISSN
1573-8248
D.O.I.
10.1007/s10526-017-9861-5
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Azolla filiculoides Lamarck (Azollaceae) (water fern), is an invasive floating macrophyte capable of rapid growth leading to the complete coverage of water surfaces. The North American weevil Stenopelmus rufinasus, Gyllenhal (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) is a biological control agent that has become naturalised in the UK. To determine the effects of the weevil on A. filiculoides in ‘semi-controlled’ conditions, weevils were introduced at four stocking densities into outdoor floating tanks containing A. filiculoides. The introduction of weevils at all densities resulted in a significant decline in percentage cover of A. filiculoides compared to the control. Increasing weevil stocking density resulted in a more rapid reduction in the area of green A. filiculoides. The highest stocking density of 400 weevils per m2 caused complete kill within a month of introduction. The UK summer provides conditions that are suitable for weevil reproduction and herbivory, and even the lowest stocking density of weevils tested (100 weevils per m2) can have a substantial impact on the surface cover of A. filiculoides. Although the weevil is effective in summer, augmentation is required annually for reliable control.

Journal

BioControlSpringer Journals

Published: Feb 6, 2018

References

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