Mass-rearing and release of a locally adapted female-only strain of Trichoqramma nr. platneri for supplemental control of codling moth in coastal organic apple orchards

Previous research (with the support of OFRF) has been done with coastal apple growers in support of pheromone-based codling moth management and organic growers have now accepted and are using this method of pest control. However, in some orchards, mating disruption and other organic methods cannot alone keep codling moth damage at a manageable level. The addition of a locally-adapted egg parasitoid released at egg-laying of the first codling moth generation could make an economic difference for local organic apple growers in terms of lowered codling moth infestation at harvest. The information gathered in this study about flight and parasitism of codling moth eggs after parasitoid release in organically-managed orchards has been made available to the public through the annual "Moth Madness" growers meeting sponsored by the California Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) Watsonville Lighthouse Farm Breakfasts in March 1996 and 1997, and in articles in the Santa Cruz Sentinel and Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems (CASFS) newsletter Cultivar (see attached). The principal investigator now makes mass-reared parasitoids available, at cost, to local commercial organic apple growers, upon request.