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Keywords:

  • Bactrocera oleae;
  • edge density;
  • landscape ecology;
  • olive fruit fly;
  • patch size;
  • pest populations;
  • Shannon diversity

Abstract

  1. Landscape ecology studies on pest control have focused mainly on annual crops and natural enemies, whereas more studies measuring pest pressure on perennial crops are needed.
  2. The relationships between the abundance and damage by Bactrocera oleae (Rossi) and different landscape indices were analyzed using data gathered by a regional network during 2009, 2010 and 2011 in Jaén, Spain. Eleven indices of landscape composition and configuration calculated at six different spatial scales (radii of 500, 600, 750, 1000, 1500 and 2000 m) were used in correlation analyses.
  3. Significant correlations between abundance and some indices were observed primarily during Julian days 236–264 (24 August to 21 September) 2010. These correlations were negative with edge density, the Shannon landscape diversity index and the number of patches, and were positive with patch size standard deviation and mean patch size.
  4. Linear mixed-effects models were used to identify the indices most strongly related to the abundance of olive flies. These indices were mean patch size, edge density at 500–750 m and the Shannon landscape diversity index, as well as the number of patches at 1000–2000 m.
  5. These results suggest that greater landscape complexity may contribute to reduced numbers of B. oleae. More studies are needed to establish how to reduce olive fruit fly damage.