Mating disruption for Navel Orangeworm
Mel Machado is a Director of Member Relations for Blue Diamond Growers. He gives his thoughts on mating disruption for navel orange worm
“From what we know about mating disruption…. first of all, it works better in larger fields,” said Machado. “The data has shown that under 40 acres it's tough to get it to work cause you just, just getting the critical mass out there. And so what we're recommending is if you're in an area with small blocks, neighbors should work together to turn a bunch of small blocks into a big one,” he added.
Machado says there's a lot of evidence that mating disruption works when you have the right orchard size.
“Mating confusion, mating disruption from what we understand and working with the growers that are doing it, it definitely works,” Machado said. “You're not going to eliminate hull split treatments, but you might reduce the amount of treatments you're having to do. So if you're normally doing two, you might get away with one. If you're doing three, you might get away with two. So it's something that we're all still learning about. Many confusion. Definitely something that's a good tool, and definitely interested in pursuing it.”
It's recommended that almond and pistachio growers contact their PCA to discuss mating disruption in their orchards. Again, it could help eliminate a spray or two for the number one pest in the industry.