Changing insect pest management of pistachio and almond in California (2000 to 2014)
Almond and pistachio acreage in California has increased substantially from 2000 to 2014. Almond acreage has increased over 72% to 350,000 ha while pistachio acreage increased over 195% to 89,000 ha. At the same time, insecticide/miticide usage has increased over 300% to 4.7 applications per bearing ha in almonds and over 350% to 7.0 applications per bearing ha in pistachios. The key insect pest of almonds and pistachios is navel orangeworm, Amyelois transitella, and this pest drives pest management practices. There are a large number of other damaging pests of pistachios and almonds. In pistachios, the true bug complex, which is composed of stink bugs (green stink bug, Acrosternum hilare, Uhler stink bug, Chlorochroa uhleri and redshouldered stink bug, Thyanta pallidovirens), leaffooted bugs (Leptoglossus clypealis, L. occidentalis and L. zonatus), and small plant bugs (Western tarnished plant bug, Lygus hesperus, California buckeye bug, Neuroclopus longirostris, calocoris bug, Calocoris norvegicus, Phytocoris bug, Phytocoris spp.) can cause significant damage. In almonds, along with the true bug complex above, other damaging pests include peach twig borer, Anarsia linetella, oriental fruit moth, Grapholita molesta, and ants (pavement ant, Tetramorim caespitum, southern fire ant, Solenopsis xyloni and thief ant, S. molesta). In almonds, control of these pests suppresses the beneficial arthropod complex, which can result in damaging Pacific spider mite and twospotted spider mite (Tetranychus pacificus and T. urticae) populations. The driving forces for this significant increase in acreage and insecticide/miticide usage is the result of a number of factors, which include government regulation, market forces, insecticide resistance and annual insect/mite population pressures. These driving forces will be discussed below with their impact on pest management.
Van Steenwyk, R.A., Doll, D., Wong, B.J., Cabuslay, C.S. and Wirakusumah, D.A. (2018). Changing insect pest management of pistachio and almond in California (2000 to 2014). Acta Hortic. 1219, 345-352
insecticides, miticides, Amyelois transitella, almond, pistachio