Native to Asia, the agricultural pest is a worldwide threat to the berry production industry, which includes raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, and cherries. The tiny insect, about 1/12 to 1/8 inch long, invaded the continental United States in 2008.
“All of the papers were by invitation of the co-editors of the special collection—Jana Lee, Cesar Rodrigue-Saona, and me,” said journal editor-in-chief Frank Zalom, a UC Davis distinguished professor emeritus and recall professor in the Department of Entomology and Nematology. Zalom's research includes the spotted-wing drosophila.
Lee, formerly with the UC Davis laboratory of the late chemical ecologist Steve Seybold, is a research entomologist with the Horticultural Crops Research Unit, U. S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Corvallis. Rodriguez-Saona, who received his doctorate from UC Riverside, is an Extension entomologist with the Department of Entomology, Rutgers University, the State University of New Jersey.
In addition to Zalom and Lee, the UC Davis-linked authors include Joanna Chiu and Antoine Abrieux (Joanna Chiu lab); Zain Syed and Kevin Cloonan (Walter Leal lab); Gregory Loeb (Rick Karban lab); and Kelly Hamby, Hannah Burrack, Fatemeh Ganjisaffar, Brian Gress, Nicole Nicola and Mark Demkovich (Zalom lab).
Overall, the Special Collection includes authors from Austria, Brazil, Canada, Italy, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the United States that represent perspectives from universities, federal and state laboratories, growers, and pest product companies, according to the editors.
UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology communication specialist Kathy Keatley Garvey provided the cover photo of the spotted-wing drosophila feeding on a raspberry.
Since 2008, "D. suzukii has become a key economical pest of raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, and cherries in the United States and worldwide," the editors wrote in their introductory remarks. "Not surprisingly, the number of publications has proliferated from 29 publications as of 2010 to 978 additional publications between 2011 and 2021 from a Web of Science search for ‘Drosophila suzukii.' While many publications are available, this special collection will highlight advances in D. suzukii pest management since its U.S. invasion. We solicited papers by open call and received 66 abstracts, and selected 14 papers covering: 1) review, 2) monitoring and risk, 3) behavioral control, 4) biological control, 5) cultural control, and 6) chemical control."
The editors pointed out that “Given that 14 years of research has accumulated since the continental U.S. invasion, it was fitting to include two reviews that provide a different scope than was covered in prior reviews on D. suzukii biological control (Lee et al. 2019, Wang et al. 2020), trapping (Burrack et al. 2020), cultural control (Schöneberg et al. 2021), and chemical ecology (Cloonan et al. 2018). This special collection is anchored by Tait et al. (2021), a review of the most promising methods as part of an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategy against D. suzukii across the world since 2008. The effectiveness, impact, sustainability, and present stage of development and implementation are discussed for each of the considered techniques, and insights for continued development are presented.”
“A second review in this special collection by Garcia et al. (2022) summarizes the history and current status of D. suzukii in Latin America. The authors first provide a history of the D. suzukii invasion through Latin American countries, which started in 2011 in Mexico, and is now present in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Uruguay. They describe the host plants where D. suzukii has been found as well as advances in monitoring, biological control, chemical control, cultural control, and in the sterile insect technique. The authors posit that this information can serve as the basis for developing sustainable area-wide management programs in Latin America.”
The researchers related that the pest is a significant threat to California's berry production industry, which the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) valued at more than $2.8 billion in 2019. Caneberries, in particular, "are a preferred host of D. suzukii, and California accounts for 89.4 percent of all production in the United States, with the Monterey Bay region producing about half of the state's raspberries and blackberries (CDFA 2020). This pest has now spread to all major berry and cherry growing areas of the United States."
The collection is meant to serve "as a key reference point for entomologists across many institutions (e.g., academia, government, and industry) on important advances in D. suzukii pest management," according to the Entomological Society of America. "The articles in this collection will also provide scientists information on potential research gaps that will help guide future research directions on this important pest. The goal is to preserve and catalog articles on various aspects of D. suzukii pest management, i.e., monitoring, cultural control, chemical control, behavioral control, and biological control, that will be shared among entomologists."
“Honorary Membership acknowledges those who have served ESA for at least 20 years through significant involvement in the affairs of the society that has reached an extraordinary level,” ESA officials said in announcing the three recipients on Aug. 24. “Candidates for this honor are selected by the ESA Governing Board and then voted on by the ESA membership.”
“I am honored and humbled to receive this award,” said Leal, a distinguished biochemistry professor with the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology and a former chair of the Department of Entomology (now the Department of Entomology and Nematology). “It is truly a highlight of my career.”
Other 2022 Honorary Member recipients are research entomologist Alvin Simmons of the USDA Agricultural Research Service whom Leal fondly calls “my twin brother”; and research entomologist and UC Davis-educated Melody Keena of the U.S. Forest Service.
Leal and Simmons co-chaired the 2016 International Congress of Entomology conference, “Entomology Without Borders,” held in Orlando, Florida, that drew nearly 7000 attendees from 101 countries. It was the largest gathering of entomologists in the history of insect science.
Keena received three UC Davis degrees in entomology: her bachelor's degree in 1983; her master's in 1985, and her doctorate in 1988. (See her website.)
Leal, Simmons and Keena will be recognized during the 2022 Joint Annual Meeting of the Entomological Societies of America, Canada, and British Columbia, Nov. 13-16, in Vancouver.
As a leading global scientist and inventor in the field of insect olfaction and communication, Leal was named a 2019 Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI) for his impact in the fields of molecular, cellular biology, and entomology. (Due to the COVID pandemic, the organization cancelled the 2020 Phoenix ceremony and Leal received the medal in June 2022.)
“When Walter Leal reached UC Davis, he came with the reputation of being a ‘one man army in research,'” said UC Davis distinguished professor Bruce Hammock who received the NAI Fellow award in 2014. Hammock holds a joint appointment with the Department of Entomology and Nematology and the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center. “This reputation was well deserved. I know of no one at UC Davis who matches Walter in taking his remarkable fundamental advances in science and translating them to increase the safety and magnitude of world food production.”
Leal, an expert in insect communication, investigates how insects detect odors, connect and communicate within their species; and detect host and non-host plant matter. His research, spanning three decades, targets insects that carry mosquito-borne diseases as well as agricultural pests that damage and destroy crops. He and his lab drew international attention with their discovery of the mode of action of DEET, the gold standard of insect repellents.
Leal was recently elected chair of the International Congress of Entomology Council, which selects a country to host the congress every four years and which supports the continuity of the international congresses of entomology. Leal succeeds prominent entomologist May Berenbaum of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, editor-in-chief of the journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and a 2014 recipient of the National Medal of Science.
“I have big shoes to fill,” he said.
Federal Grants. For the last 22 years, Leal's research program has drawn support from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases of the National Institutes of Health, the United States Department of Agriculture, the National Science Foundation, commodity groups, research agreements, and gifts from various donors.
He has published more than 200 peer-reviewed papers in a variety of entomology and multidisciplinary journals, including the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA (PNAS), Nature, iScience, Journal of Medical Entomology, Insect Biochemistry, and Molecular Biology. His research, with an h-index of 61, has been cited more than 13,500 times.
A native of Brazil, educated in Brazil and Japan, and fluent in Portuguese, Japanese and English, Leal received his master's degree and doctorate in Japan: his master's degree at Mie University in 1987, and his doctorate in applied biochemistry at Tsukuba University in 1990. Leal then conducted research for 10 years at Japan's National Institute of Sericultural and Entomological Science and the Japan Science and Technology Agency before joining the faculty of the UC Davis Department of Entomology in 2000. He chaired the department from July 2006 to February 2008.
Leal has served ESA for more than two decades, organizing symposia at the annual meetings, and serving as secretary, president, and past president of the ESA Integrative Physiological and Molecular Insect Systems section, now the Physiology, Biochemistry and Toxicology section. “He organized more than a dozen program and section symposia and included outstanding scholars and newly minted ESA members as speakers or co-organizers,” ESA noted. “These symposia included sponsored luncheons, social hours, and discussion sessions to promote interaction among attendees and speakers and build and cement collaborations.”
Highly Honored by Peers. Highly honored by his peers, Leal is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Entomological Society (2015) and Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (2005), ESA (2009), and California Academy of Sciences (2015). He received both the Medal of Achievement (1995) and the Medal of Science (2008) from the Entomological Society of Brazil and the 1998 Gakkaisho from the Japanese Society of Applied Entomology and Zoology. In 2019, ESA selected him to deliver the Founders' Memorial Lecture on "Tom Eisner: An Incorrigible Entomophile and Innovator Par Excellence."
The International Society of Chemical Ecology honored him with its Silverstein-Simeone Award (2007) and the Silver Medal (2012). In 2012, Leal was elected to the Brazilian Academy of Science (inducted in 2013). For his creativity in entomology, Leal received ESA's Nan Yao Su Award (2011) and was elected a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (2019). The UC Davis Academic Senate awarded him both the Distinguished Teaching Award (2020) and the Distinguished Scholarly Public Service Award (2022).
The hybrid meeting (both in-person and virtual) took place Oct. 31-Nov. 3 in Denver.
Several of the UC Davis highlights, as previously featured on the Department of Entomology and Nematology website:
- UC Davis distinguished professor Frank Zalom, integrated pest management (IPM) specialist and a past president of ESA, was celebrated as an Honorary Member of the ESA, an honor bestowed for his “long-term dedication and extraordinary contributions." (See more here.)
- UC Davis doctoral alumnus Kelli Hoover, a Pennsylvania State University professor internationally known for her research on invasive species, including the Asian longhorned beetle, gypsy moth and spotted lanternfly, was honored as a newly elected Fellow of ESA for her excellence in research. (See more here.)
- Danielle Rutkowski, doctoral candidate in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, won a President's Prize in a graduate student competition for her presentation on "Fungicide Impacts on Bumble Bees are Mediated via Effects on Bee-Associated Fungi" in the category, Plant-Insect Ecosystems: Ecology 3." She studies with community ecologist Rachel Vannette, associate professor, and is also advised by community ecologist and professor Rick Karban. (See more here.)
- Maureen Page, with the lab of pollinator ecologist Neal Williams, professor, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, won the second-place award in a graduate student competition for her presentation on "Optimizing Pollinator-Friendly Plant Mixes to Simultaneously Support Wild and Managed Bees." She competed in the category, Plant-Insect Ecosystems: Pollinators. (See more here.)
- Kyle Lewald, with the College of Biological Sciences and the Integrated Genomics and Genetics Graduate Group, but a member of the lab of molecular geneticist and physiologist Joanna Chiu, professor and vice chair of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, won second-place in a graduate student competition for his presentation on "Assembly of Highly Continguous Diploid Genome for the Agricultural Pest, Tuta absoluta." (See more here.)
At the ESA's annual meetings, students are offered the opportunity to present their research and win prizes. There are several components to the competition: 10-minute papers (oral), posters, and infographics. First-place winners receive a one-year free membership in ESA, a $75 cash prize, and a certificate. Second-winners score a one-year free membership in ESA and a certificate.
"Each year approximately 3,500 entomologists and other scientists gather to exchange scientific information," ESA says on hits website. "A program of symposia, conferences, submitted papers, and continuing education seminars provides attendees the opportunity to hear and present research results. The meeting also provides a chance to interact informally with peers and prospective employers."
ESA, founded in 1889 and headquartered in Annapolis, Md.,, is the world's largest organization serving the professional and scientific needs of entomologists and others in related disciplines. Its 7000 members are in educational institutions, health agencies, private industry, and government. Michelle Smith of Corteva Agriscience served as the 2021 president. The newly elected president is Jessica Ware, assistant curator of Invertebrate Zoology at the American Museum of Natural History.
Below are several images shared by Photography G of Denver at the ESA meeting. More images from the ESA meeting are on Flickr.
The seminar, part of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology's weekly fall seminars, begins at 4:10 p.m. The Zoom link: http://ucdavis.zoom.us/j/99515291076.
"Since its 2008 detection in North America, management of the invasive Drosophila suzukii has primarily relied on calendar insecticide applications, creating a scenario where selection pressure from frequent insecticide
applications could result in development of insecticide resistance," Ganjisaffar says in her abstract.
"Field-derived resistance to spinosad has already been documented in California caneberry production, and there is significant concern among berry and cherry growers for development of resistance to other insecticides," she wrote. "This seminar will present the status of our ongoing studies to assess development and extent of insecticide resistance in California D. suzukii populations, seasonal changes in resistance, stability of resistance and potential cross-resistance between chemical classes, as well as our work on the behavioral control of D. suzukii and evaluating the efficacy of some Attract-and-Kill products."
Ganjisaffar joined the Zalom lab in August 2020 from UC Riverside where she served as a postdoctoral scholar after receiving her doctorate in entomology there in 2016. She was a member of the UC Riverside team that won second place in theESA's Linnaean Games (now Entomology Games). She received a University of California Dean's Distinguished fellowship in 2011.
Zalom, a UC Davis distinguished professor of entomology, is a past president of the Entomological Society of America (ESA) and was recently named Honorary Member of ESA, the organization's highest honor.
Ganjisaffar holds a bachelor's degree in agricultural engineering/plant protection (2006) from the University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran, and a master's degree in agricultural entomology (2009) from Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran.
Her most recent publications include:
- Life History Evaluation of Ooencyrtus lucidus, a Newly Described Egg Parasitoid of Bagrada hilaris
Journal, Insects, May 9, 2020
- Lethal and Sub-Lethal Effects of Insecticides on the Pink Hibiscus Mealybug, Maconellicoccus hirsutus (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae)
- Mutual interference between adult females of Galendromus flumenis (Acari: Phytoseiidae) feeding on eggs of Banks grass mite decreases predation efficiency and increases emigration rate
Experimental and Applied Acarology,
The UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology seminars are held on Wednesdays at 4:10 p.m. All in-person seminars are held in 122 Briggs Hall, while the virtual seminars are broadcast on Zoom. For more information, contact coordinator Shahid Siddique, nematologist and assistant professor, at email@example.com.
The authors and their paper, “Drones: Innovative Technology for Use in Precision Pest Management,” will be recognized at the Entomological Society of America (ESA) meeting, set Oct. 31-Nov. 3 in Denver.
"On behalf of our team, first author Fernando lost Filho, a doctoral student in entomology at the University of São Paulo, Brazil, and a former UC Davis exchange student, will deliver the presentation at the ESA meeting," said de Lange, a former postdoctoral fellow in the Christian Nansen laboratory at the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology and now of The Netherlands.
Other co-authors are remote sensing expert Wieke Heldens of the German Aerospace Center, Wessling, Germany; and engineer and drone communication expert Zhaodan Kong, associate professor, UC Davis Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering.
“Drones can be equipped with a range of attachments, such as sensors, pesticide sprayers, and natural enemy releasers, and can therefore contribute to more sustainable agriculture in various ways,” said de Lange, who assembled the team and serves as the corresponding author.
“They are highly versatile," she said, "and have great commercial potential.”
Their paper, one of the first-of-its-kind to summarize scientific literature on the use of agricultural drones for pest management, covers the use of drones with remote sensing equipment to detect pest problems from the air. It calls for the increased use of actuation drones, to provide solutions such as spraying pesticides and releasing biocontrol organisms.
JEE Award. Every year the editors-in-chief and editorial boards of the Journal of Economic Entomology (JEE) and Environment Entomology along with ESA and Oxford University Press, select outstanding research publications for special recognition. The categories include Editors' Choice, Readers' Choice and Reviewers' Choice.
For the JEE Editors' Choice award, the editors-in-chief nominate papers based on citation, readership and Altmetric scores. The winners are determined by a vote of the JEE subject editors. JEE co-editors-in-chief are Frank Zalom, UC Davis distinguished professor of entomology; Mike Brewer, entomology professor, Texas A&M University; and Nan-Yao Su, distinguished professor of entomology at the University of Florida. JEE is ESA's largest journal by publishing volume and the most-cited journal in entomology. (See ESA website.)
ESA announced the awards online. All of the winning papers are currently online.
Improving Crop Monitoring Procedures. “Early outbreak detection and treatment application are inherent to effective pest management, allowing management decisions to be implemented before pests are well-established and crop losses accrue,” the authors wrote in their abstract. “Pest monitoring is time-consuming and may be hampered by lack of reliable or cost-effective sampling techniques. Thus, we argue that an important research challenge associated with enhanced sustainability of pest management in modern agriculture is developing and promoting improved crop monitoring procedures.”
Drones can target pest outbreaks or hot spots in field crops and orchards, such as Colorado potato beetle in potato fields or sugarcane aphid in sorghum, the scientists pointed out. “Pests are unpredictable and not uniformly distributed. Precision agricultural technologies, like the use of drones, can offer important opportunities for integrated pest management (IPM).”
De Lange, who holds a doctorate in chemical ecology from the University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland, joined the Nansen lab in 2016. Her research interests include plant-insect interactions, integrated pest management, chemical ecology and precision agriculture. She focused much of her research on California strawberries.