Determining Arthropod Biodiversity in Canola Cropping Systems as a Key to Enhancing Sustainability of Production

Researcher: Lloyd Dosdall, University of Alberta, Edmonton AB, Hector Carcamo, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lethbridge AB, John Spence, University of Alberta, Edmonton AB, J. Broatch, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, Lacombe AB

Project Code: 3.7.1

Final Report: April 2013

Summary: Canola cropping systems harbour a diverse fauna of arthropods (insects, spiders,
mites, and their relatives) at several trophic levels, and understanding their biodiversity
can improve the ability to enhance the long-term sustainability of canola production. As a result of a three-year project co-led by the University of Alberta and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, researchers have produced a database for members of the canola industry of the diversity of species of beetles, anthomyiid flies, hymenopteran
parasitoids, true bugs, spiders, and butterflies and moths commonly found in canola. A better understanding of the role of predators in canola cropping systems is needed to better understand the ecosystem function and economic benefits of these species and to guide growers on possible insecticide interventions when insect pest attack occurs.

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