Biological control of an agricultural pest protects tropical forests

Wyckhuys Kris, Hughes A.C., Buamas C., Johnson A.C., Vasseur L., Reymondin Louis, Deguine Jean-Philippe, Sheil Douglas. 2019. Biological control of an agricultural pest protects tropical forests. Communications Biology, 2:10, 8 p.

Journal article ; Article de recherche ; Article de revue à facteur d'impact Revue en libre accès total
Published version - Anglais
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Quartile : Q1, Sujet : BIOLOGY

Abstract : Though often perceived as an environmentally-risky practice, biological control of invasive species can restore crop yields, ease land pressure and thus contribute to forest conservation. Here, we show how biological control against the mealybug Phenacoccus manihoti (Hemiptera) slows deforestation across Southeast Asia. In Thailand, this newly-arrived mealybug caused an 18% decline in cassava yields over 2009–2010 and an escalation in prices of cassava products. This spurred an expansion of cassava cropping in neighboring countries from 713,000 ha in 2009 to > 1 million ha by 2011: satellite imagery reveals 388%, 330%, 185% and 608% increases in peak deforestation rates in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam focused in cassava crop expansion areas. Following release of the host-specific parasitoid Anagyrus lopezi (Hymenoptera) in 2010, mealybug outbreaks were reduced, cropping area contracted and deforestation slowed by 31–95% in individual countries. Hence, when judiciously implemented, insect biological control can deliver substantial environmental benefits.

Mots-clés Agrovoc : Phenacoccus manihoti, Manihot esculenta, Manioc, Anagyrus, Lutte biologique, Agent de lutte biologique, Déboisement, conservation des forêts

Mots-clés géographiques Agrovoc : Thaïlande, République démocratique populaire lao, Cambodge, Myanmar, Viet Nam, Asie du Sud-Est

Mots-clés complémentaires : Anagyrus lopezi

Classification Agris : H10 - Pests of plants
K01 - Forestry - General aspects
P01 - Nature conservation and land resources

Champ stratégique Cirad : CTS 4 (2019-) - Santé des plantes, des animaux et des écosystèmes

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Wyckhuys Kris, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University (CHN) - auteur correspondant
  • Hughes A.C., CAAS (CHN)
  • Buamas C., Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives (Thaïlande) (THA)
  • Johnson A.C., Charles Sturt University (AUS)
  • Vasseur L., Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University (CHN)
  • Reymondin Louis, CIAT (VNM)
  • Deguine Jean-Philippe, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR PVBMT (REU)
  • Sheil Douglas, Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NOR)

Source : Cirad-Agritrop (

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