Non GM Methods of Controlling Aphids in Cereals Lawrence Woodward. Aphids in Cereals. There are different types and different levels of impact Impacts – a vector for Barley Yellow Dwarf Virus (early drilling)
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Non GM Methods of Controlling
Aphids in Cereals
(also Potato viruses in Scotland)
- direct impact by feeding on grain and ears
Organic Farmers Have No Problems With Aphids in Cereals Either Directly or through BYDV
BUT THERE IS MORE THAN THIS TO AGRO-ECOLOGY AND
(Kraus et al 2011 in triticale)
Organic farms do not have a problem with aphids – farmer evidence on all types of organic farms
Organic farming is based on no synthetic fertilisers, pesticides or herbicides. It involves crop rotation for pest control and optimising soil nutrients. The use of nitrogen fixing plants like clover aids soil fertility, alongside recycling manure produced on the farm
The use of nitrogen fixing plants like clover aids soil fertility, alongside recycling manure
produced on the farm. Hedgerows and headlands promote habitats for crop pest predators like ladybirds, and mixed enterprises and livestock provide other ways to increase soil fertility and control pests.
There are many types of farming systems to help control pests. One of these types is agroforestry, which involves growing crops between trees.
Standard organic systems use ‘scruffy’ crop systems. This involves trees, hedgerows and headlands as field boundaries and margins to promote biodiversity and provide habitat for pest predators like ladybirds and lacewings which control insects like aphids.
Even predominantly arable farmland can promote predator insects for aphid control by using crop rotation and avoiding the use of soluble artificial nitrogen fertilisers. There is less biodiversity on these sorts of farms, but aphid incidence is still much lower than on conventionally fertilised systems.
- weeds in crops
- diverse field margins
68-105% more species and74-153% greater abundance (Fuller et al 2005)
Higher diversity in semi-natural habitats on organic farms (Petersen et al 2006, Boutin et al 2008)
Higher within-field diversity of plants in organic , even in complex landscapes (Gibson et al 2007)