Agricultural restoration for beneficial insect biodiversity

Project lead: Dr. Juli Carrillo, Dr. Claire Kremen, Drew Bondar

PIEE Lab Members associated with this project: Matt Tsuruda, Martina Clausen, Savi Raghuraman

In collaboration with the Delta Farmland and Wildlife Trust

The goal of this project is to determine the impact of semi-natural habitat restoration within farmlands on the biodiversity and abundance of pest and beneficial insects. Semi natural habitat enhancements are potential sources of ecosystem services including supporting beneficial insect populations but may also serve as a reservoir for crop associated pests. During the 2020 growing season, pest and beneficial insects were collected in different habitat enhancements, including grassland set-asides, pollinator seed mixes, hedgerows, and control field margins across 28 field sites in Delta, British Columbia, Canada. Biodiversity surveys included a focus on the agricultural pest of berries and small fruit, Drosophila suzukii (spotted wing drosophila), and associated parasitoid wasps. Data collected will contribute to a better understanding of the effects of these habitat amendments on insect biodiversity, pest pressure, and natural biological control.

Keywords: Entomology, biodiversity, parasitoid, pest, insect, agroecosystem, agriculture, biological control