Field tests are useful for the evaluation of the pesticides' impact in realistic use situations. However, the distinction between the direct and indirect effects of a pesticide is not always possible in field, with consequences on the conclusions about pesticides toxicity. Generalist predatory mites belonging to the Phytoseiidae family are widely considered as non-target organisms in pesticide side-effect evaluations. Plant pathogens of several cultivated plants can be of importance as food resources for various phytoseiids. Pesticides with fungicidal activity may have a direct impact on phytoseiids, but they can also have an indirect effect reducing food availability for predatory mites. Here, we present the results of field experiments performed on grapevine, where we investigate whether the availability of the plant pathogen grape downy mildew has an effect on fungicides impact on the predatory mites Typhlodromus pyri Scheuten and Amblyseius andersoni (Chant). In these experiments we used fungicides characterized by differential selectivity to predatory mites in laboratory: copper compounds, folpet, and mancozeb. Results indicated that the abundance of predatory mites was associated with the plant pathogen foliar symptoms presence. The presence of predatory mites was different among treatments in response of the toxicological traits of a pesticide (direct effects), but also as consequences of differential plant pathogen availability induced by fungicide applications (indirect effects). During the investigation, the variable plant pathogen spread on untreated control determined contrasting results on pesticides effect. We segregated the direct effects from the indirect food resource-mediated effects including a non-toxic reference in the experimental protocols.
|Autori:||Pozzebon, A.;Borgo, M.;Duso, C.|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2010|
|Titolo:||The effects of fungicides in non-target mites can be mediated by plant pathogens|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|