Biological control of adult Diabrotica – Spray experiments with Metarhizium brunneum strain BIPESCO 5 under real farm conditions
Abstract: The western corn rootworm Diabrotica virgifera virgifera (WCR) is causing economic damages in maize production in parts of the European Union (EU), so in Austria. The control of adults is becoming increasingly cumbersome as the WCR has a history of adapting to several management practices. The European Union has directed Member States to consider Integrated Pest Management as a strategy for controlling WCR. Entomopathogenic fungi Metarhizium brunneum (BIOPESCO 5) have been found to have a real potential also for adult control. First studies conducted in Styria (Austria) showed the potential of adult spray application using safe, water dispersible Metarhizium brunneum formulations (Hypocreales: Clavicipitaceae), under real farm conditions as an innovative direct biological control method for WCR in maize production.