Charles Sturt University
Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation

Pingyang Zhu

 Pingyang Zhu

Exploring the relevance of the ecological traits of parasitoid wasps and nectariferous plants: the new frontier for conservation biological control of pests

Pingyang Zhu is exploring the relevance of the ecological traits of parasitoid wasps and nectariferous plants: the new frontier for conservation biological control of pests

Traits such as head width, fecundity, or flower colour, inflorescence type, should be considered to better understand general rules underlying the suitability of nectar plant types to support parasitic Hymenoptera performance. The study of traits is an area of keen interest in contemporary ecology. Pingyang Zhu is exploring whether a traits approach offers scope to provide a robust framework for selecting nectar plants to be used in conservation biological control programs.

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Professor Geoff Gurr

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Charles Sturt University Postgraduate Research Scholarship (CSUPRS)

National Key Research & Development Plan of China (Grant No. 2016YFD0200800)

State Key Laboratory Breeding Base for Zhejiang Sustainable Pest Control (Grant No. 2010DS700124-ZZ1601).

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  • Zhu, P.Y., Zheng, X.S., Zhang, F.C., Xu, H.X., Yang, Y.J., Chen, G.H., Lu, Z.X., Johnson, A.C., Gurr, G.M. (2018) Quantifying the respective and additive effects of nectar plant crop borders and withholding insecticides on biological control of pests in subtropical rice. Journal of Pest Science 91: 575–584
  • Zhu, P.Y., Heong, K.L., Villareal, S., Lu, Z.X. (2017) Application of nitrogen fertilizer affects natural control of the rice brown planthopper Nilaparvata lugens (Stål) by arthropod natural enemies. Acta Ecologica Sinica 37: 5542-5549 (in Chinese)
  • Zhu, P.Y., Wang, G.W., Zheng, X.S., Tian, J.C., Lu, Z.X., Heong, K.L., Xu, H.X., Chen, G.H., Yang, Y.J., Gurr, G.M. (2015) Selective enhancement of parasitoids of rice Lepidoptera pests by sesame (Sesamum indicum) flowers. BioControl 60:157-167.
  • Zhu, P.Y., Lu, Z.X., Heong, K.L., Chen, G.H., Zheng, X.S., Xu, H.X., Yang, Y.J., Nicol, H.I., Gurr, G.M. (2014) Selection of Nectar Plants for Use in Ecological Engineering to Promote Biological Control of Rice Pests by the Predatory Bug, Cyrtorhinus lividipennis, (Heteroptera: Miridae). PLoS One 9: e108669.
  • Zhu, P.Y., Gurr, G.M., Lu, Z.X., Heong, K.L., Chen, G.H., Zheng, X.S., Xu, H.X., Yang, Y.J. (2013) Laboratory screening supports the selection of sesame (Sesamum indicum) to enhance Anagrus spp. parasitoids (Hymenoptera: Mymaridae) of rice planthoppers. Biological Control 64: 83-89.
  • Lu, Z.X., Zhu, P.Y., Gurr, G.M., Zheng, X.S., Read, D.M., Heong, K.L., Yang, Y.J., Xu, H.X. (2014) Mechanisms for flowering plants to benefit arthropod natural enemies of insect pests: Prospects for enhanced use in agriculture. Insect Science 21: 1-12.
  • Liu, K., Zhu, P.Y., Lu, Z.X., Chen, G.H., Zhang, J.M., Lu, Y.B., Lu, Y.H. (2017) Effects of sesame nectar on longevity and fecundity of seven Lepidoptera and survival of four parasitoid species commonly found in agricultural ecosystems. Journal of Integrative Agriculture 16: 2534–2546.
  • Barrion, A.T., Zhu, P.Y., Zheng, X.S., Chen, G.H., Mei, Z.J., Lu, Z.X. (2016) Diversity and functional guild composition of rice leaffolder [Cnaphalocrocis medinalis (Guenee), Lepidoptera: Pyralidae] natural enemies in irrigated super hybrid rice and non-rice habitats in China. Asia Life Sciences 25: 547-563.
  • Zheng, X.S., Lu, Y.H., Zhu, P.Y., Zhang, F.C., Tian, J.C., Xu, H.X., Chen, G.H., Nansen, C., Lu, Z.X. (2017) Use of banker plant system for sustainable management of the most important insect pest in rice fields in China. Scientific Reports 7:45581.
  • Gurr, G.M., Lu, Z.X., Zheng, X.S., Xu, H.X., Zhu, P.Y., Chen, G.H., et al. (2016). Multi-country evidence that crop diversification promotes ecological intensification of agriculture. Nature Plants: 16014.

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