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MASTER
Integrated pest management strategies incorporating biocontrol for European oilseed rape pests

Crop protection in oilseed rape, a major European crop, currently relies on pesticides and lags behind recent scientific advances. MASTER will construct and evaluate, through a trans-European collaborative experiment, economically viable and environmentally less harmful Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Strategies for the crop that maximise biological control of pests and minimise pesticide use, through the enhancement of naturally occurring natural enemies of the pests. Indicators of crop performance, pest and damage incidence and cost-benefits will be used in evaluation. Guidelines for end users and a Phenological Model for Decision Support will be produced. New information on the pest/natural enemy community in the crop ecosystem and new insight into the socio-economic processes affecting new technology adoption by farmers will be acquired.

Objectives
The objectives of the project are:
1) to determine the identity, status and potential of biocontrol for rape pests in
Europe and to increase knowledge of their ecology and identify key factors affecting their efficacy
2) to develop economically viable, environmentally acceptable Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Strategies for European oilseed rape crop that maximise biocontrol of key pests and minimise pesticide use
3) to determine the socio-economic feasibility, importance and economic efficiency of the strategies in Europe, including gains in environmental quality and rural viability, and assess socio-economic factors influencing their adoption 4) to construct a Phenological Model of key pests and their biocontrol agents, that relates their time of occurrence on the crop to growth stage and climatic/weather conditions, for integration into existing Decision Support systems
5) to produce technical guidelines for end users on the IPM Strategies.

Progress to Date
The work is organised under the following five work packages:
1) IPM Strategies
2) Parasitoids
3) Predators
4) Pathogens
5) Socio-economics.
During this first year of the project, progress towards the objectives has been excellent. The first project meeting, held in March 2002 was timely and constructive and allowed partners to agree management practices and research protocols.

Results
Many publications have been produced because of this project and can be found listed on the website.

Classified in ARABLE CROPS, CROP PESTS AND DISEASES, CAP AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT, QUANTITATIVE APPROACHES AND MODELLING

Scientist responsible for the project

Professor INGRID WILLIAMS
Rothamsted Research
AL5 2JQ Harpenden
United Kingdom (The) - GB

Phone: +44 1582 763133
Fax: +44 1582 760981
E-mail: ingrid.williams@bbsrc.ac.uk

References

Project ID QLRT-2000-01447
Organisation ROTHAMSTED RESEARCH
Area 5.1.1
Start date 01 December 2001
Duration (months) 48
Total cost 2 146 073 €
Total EC contribution   1 681 478 €
Status Ongoing
Web address of the project   http://www.iacr.bbsrc.ac.uk/pie/master/master.htm

The partners

  • ESTONIAN AGRICULTURAL UNIVERSITY, Estonia - EE
    luik@eau.ee
  • BIOLOGISCHE BUNDESANSTALT FUR LAND- UND FORSTWIRTSCHAFT, Germany - DE
    w.buechs@bba.de
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