Tarnished Plant Bug
Tarnished Plant Bugs feed on the sap of many plants, including forage crops, small grains, fruits and vegetables. They can reduce crop yields and scar fruit. A wasp that develops in and kills plant bug nymphs was laboratory-reared by the USDA and shipped to New Jersey in the mid-1980s and established in Warren and Sussex Counties. The wasp is monitored for its effectiveness by USDA and NJDA entomologists and continues to spread throughout the northern counties.
The Phillip Alampi Beneficial Insect Rearing Laboratory received another related wasp species of Mediterranean origin, Peristenus relictus, from the USDA, Beneficial Insect Research Laboratory, in Newark, Delaware to investigate its potential use in southern New Jersey counties to control tarnished plant bug. The Laboratory has made significant progress in parasitoid wasp production by rearing plant bug nymphs utilizing an artificial egg-based diet.
Mexican Bean Beetle
Mexican Bean Beetle is a major insect pest of soybeans as well as a pest of snap and lima beans. The NJDA conducts a successful program, partially funded by the NJ Soybean Board involving the rearing of a beneficial parasitoid (Pediobius foveolatus) from India that cannot survive NJ winters. This program annually protects over 100,000 acres of NJ soybeans and has reduced the amount of pesticides required to control MBB by over 21 tons, saving growers more than $450,000 annually. The parasitoid is maintained in the lab and released each summer. The program is also responsible for reducing MBB damage and pesticide treatment of snap beans and lima beans.
Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys, is native to Asia and a general agricultural pest that attacks fruit trees, vegetable crops and many other plants. It was introduced to PA in the late 90’s. PABIL maintains a non-diapausing colony of this pest insect in preparation for the release of Trissolcus japonicus, a wasp biocontrol that develops in the stink bug eggs. In the meantime, BMSB eggs and adults are sold to different federal and university researchers working on projects to help control BMSB in the United States.