Opposing effects of organic and conventional fertilizers on the performance of a generalist and a specialist aphid species
Article first published online: 22 MAR 2012
© 2012 The Authors. Agricultural and Forest Entomology © 2012 The Royal Entomological Society
Agricultural and Forest Entomology
Volume 14, Issue 3, pages 270–275, August 2012
How to Cite
Stafford, D. B., Tariq, M., Wright, D. J., Rossiter, J. T., Kazana, E., Leather, S. R., Ali, M. and Staley, J. T. (2012), Opposing effects of organic and conventional fertilizers on the performance of a generalist and a specialist aphid species. Agricultural and Forest Entomology, 14: 270–275. doi: 10.1111/j.1461-9563.2011.00565.x
- Issue published online: 11 JUL 2012
- Article first published online: 22 MAR 2012
- Accepted 4 December 2011, First published online 22 March 2012
- Brevicoryne brassicae;
- intrinsic rate of increase;
- Myzus persicae
- 1Sustainable and conventional farming systems use fertilizers that differ in the availability of nitrogen, which may affect plant quality to alter the abundance and performance of potential pest species.
- 2We grew brassica plants in several types of fertilizer, including those commonly used in conventional and sustainable farming systems, and an unfertilized control. The effects of fertilizer type on the performance of two aphid species and foliar glucosinolate content were investigated.
- 3Both aphid species performed poorly (with reduced fecundity) on the unfertilized treatment compared with those feeding on fertilized host plants.
- 4Brevicoryne brassicae, the brassica specialist, performed best on Brassica oleracea plants fertilized with an organic animal manure, with a 72% increase in fecundity and an 18% increase in intrinsic rate of increase compared with plants fertilized with ammonium nitrate.
- 5By contrast, the generalist Myzus persicae had an intrinsic rate of increase that was reduced by 15% on plants growing in the animal manure compared with those growing in ammonium nitrate.
- 6These results may explain earlier findings on the effects of fertilizer type on aphid populations in the field, and are discussed in the context of pest species' responses to sustainable and conventional agricultural systems.