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Pest and disease management system for supporting winter oilseed rape decisions (PASSWORD) - LK0917

Fungicides and insecticides represent a major input on winter oilseed rape. However, many applications are mistimed or unnecessary and contribute to economic and environmental costs. Decision making can be improved by developing forecasting and risk assessment methods for pests and diseases and ensuring that these are made available to the agricultural Industry. More accurate targeting of pesticide sprays will help to maintain the profitability and sustainability of winter oilseed rape under the increasingly difficult conditions for UK agriculture (e.g. Agenda 2000), whilst reducing the environmental impact of pesticides.

This project will deliver a prototype Internet-based, integrated pest and disease decision support system for winter oilseed rape. The disease DSS will include components for forecasting, at the start of the growing season, risk of severe epidemics of stem canker (Leptosphaeria maculans; anamorphic stage, Phoma lingam) and light leaf spot (Pyrenopeziza brassicae; anamorphic stage, Cylindrosporium concentricum) in different regions of the UK. Development of the system will rely on the modelling of existing epidemiological data using empirical and simulation approaches to produce crop-specific disease forecasts. Forecasts for these two diseases will be integrated with an existing disease decision support system for pests (DORIS) to give growers and advisors up-to-date risk assessment information throughout the growing season.

The accessibility of the Internet will allow the system to be updated easily and efficiently and enable model-derived pest and disease risk warnings to be e-mailed to registered parties so that optimal spray windows can be accurately pinpointed. User appraisal will be arranged during development to ensure that the ultimate product is in a form that can be easily used by the agricultural industry, despite the complexity of host-pathogen/pest-environment interactions.
1. To develop regional forecasts for stem canker for England.
2. To produce a regional light leaf spot forecast for Scotland.
3. To extend current crop-specific light leaf spot forecasts in relation to crop and weather factors.
4. To model development of phoma leaf spot and stem canker epidemics in relation to crop and weather factors to produce crop-specific forecasts.
5. To identify the duration and extent of disease control with fungicides and incorporate this information into forecasts.
6. To assess risk of yield loss from stem canker and light leaf spot, and the economic consequences of fungicide spray decisions.
7. To integrate decision-making methodology on pest and disease control to produce a single DSS for winter oilseed rape.
8. To test the new disease forecasts in winter oilseed rape crops.
9. To undertake user appraisal from Year 1 to guide development of the DSS user interface.
Project Documents
• Abstract : LK0917 Pest and Disease Management System for Supporting Winter Oilseed Rape Decisions Abstract   (8k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2000

To: 2003

Cost: £149,546
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Du Pont (UK) Ltd, Rothamsted Research (BBSRC), University - Scottish Agricultural College, Syngenta, ProCam Group Ltd, ADAS UK Ltd., Home Grown Cereals Authority, Central Science Laboratory, Perry Foundation, The
Arable Farming              
Disease Control              
LINK Programme              
Oilseed Rape              
Pest Control              
Plant diseases              
Plant Pests and Diseases              
Sustainable Farming and Food              
Sustainable Production              
Fields of Study
Arable Crops