- Focus Areas
- Agricultural Pest Management
- Ecology/Biological Control
- Evolutionary Biology
- Freshwater and Estuarine Entomology
- Insect Pathology
- Molecular Biology, Physiology, Toxicology, and Molecular Genetics
- Organic Agriculture
- Pesticide Technology, Assessment, and Policy
- Urban, Structural, and Green Industries Pest Management
- Research Partners
- Research Opportunities
- Fall 2013 Colloquium
- Spring 2014 Colloquium
- Focus Areas
Agricultural Pest Management
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Staff: Mike Embrey, Terry Patton
Agricultural crops are of considerable importance to the Maryland economy and also vital to other industries, such as poultry, the leading agricultural enterprise, which relies upon certain field crops for feed and a place for waste management. To ensure profitable production, faculty members with pest management expertise in the Department of Entomology address both short- and long-term solutions to the most important arthropod-related problems facing Maryland agriculture. Management strategies that are environmentally and socially acceptable are developed and implemented to protect the unique environment associated with the Chesapeake and nearby urban areas.
Applied ResearchCurrently, major emphasis is placed on pest management strategies for use in corn, soybeans, small grains, forage crops, vegetables, and beekeeping. High priority is placed on applied research to solve problems and address issues of immediate concern. For example, with the introduction of transgenic insecticidal crops, Entomology faculty have taken a leadership role in evaluating benefits and potential uses of this new technology, assessing its potential impacts on nontarget invertebrates, and developing resistance management strategies. Other applied projects focus on control strategies for new emerging pests, application strategies for reducing the cost and selection pressure of insecticides, baseline monitoring and detection of pest resistance, development of economic treatment thresholds, decision aids, and monitoring methods, enhancement of biological control through conservation and landscape design, insecticide efficacy and environmental fate studies to support new insecticide registrations, and management of mite pests of honeybees.
Basic ResearchBasic research toward long term solutions is underway in the areas of host plant resistance, plant/insect interactions, biology of new pest species, plant-mediated resistance, ecology and behavior of natural enemies, isolation of bioactive substances from microbial symbionts of insects, and the identification and incorporation of genes from entomopathogenic fungi into plants.
Multidisciplinary ApproachEmphasis is placed on multidisciplinary approaches, so many projects involve departmental faculty members with plant pathology, weed science, and nematology expertise, faculty from the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and scientists from government agencies and the private sector.
An annual report of pest management activities and projects in Maryland is posted on the Maryland Pest Management Program Website.