Assessing the impact of Contarinia sp. on canola production across the Prairies

Researcher: Meghan Vankosky, Owen Olfert, and Dwayne Hegedus, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada, Boyd Mori, AAFC and University of Alberta, Scott Meers, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, Scott Hartley, Saskatchewan Agriculture, John Gavloski, Manitoba Agriculture, Tim Haye, Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International

Project Code: CARP 2017.12

Final Report: March 2020

Summary: In 2016, a new species of midge, Contarinia brassicola Sinclair (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae), that develops on canola (Brassica napus L., Brassicaceae) was discovered in Saskatchewan and Alberta (Mori et al. 2019). At the time, nothing was known about its biology or potential impact on canola production. The discovery of C. brassicola also raised questions about the presence of swede midge (Contarinia nasturtii (Kieffer), Diptera: Cecidomyiidae) on the Prairies. This project was initiated to: (1) to determine the distribution of C. brassicola and swede midge, (2) to describe the life history of C. brassicola and estimate its potential impact on canola yield, (3) to use population genetics to determine the source of Contarinia sp. midges on the Prairies, and (4) to identify parasitoids of Contarinia sp. for biocontrol.

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