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Agroecological crop protection in Reunion: first results in commercial farm conditions

Deguine J.P., Rousse P., Leroux K., Augusseau X.. 2011. Communications in Agricultural and Applied Biological Sciences, 76 (2) : p. 107-118. International Symposium on Crop Protection. 63, 2011-05-24, Ghent (Belgique).

Cucurbits fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) are major pests of vegetable crops in Reunion. Up to now, the protection of the latter relied mainly on agrochemistry. The broad spectrum insecticides are however considered as uneffective by the growers themselves and are largely harmful for health and environment. We thus conceived a project of research, development and education, in order to bring a sustainable management methodology of these pests. This innovative project, called GAMOUR, is a premiere in Europe. It gathers the numerous actors of agriculture in Reunion, firstly the growers who are the eventual recepients of this methodology. GAMOUR relies on the axioms of agroecological crop management: sanitation, habitat management and conservative biological control. Our action has started since early 2009 in three " conventionnal " pilot area totalizing about 50ha of cultures and 30 growers, as well as in four organic farms (the technical package is compatible with organic farming specifications). We present now the first results yielded after two years of agroecological practices: (i) field assessement of method effectiveness, (ii) monitoring of fly populations in pilot areas (iii) monitoring of crop productions, (iv)satisfaction survey of implied growers. These results are highly encouraging: chemical sprayings have been stopped while vegetable yields are at least as high as before. As a consequence, the growers¿ incomes are increasing. Our field experimentations confirm the efffectiveness of techniques firstly assessed in laboratory conditions. In particular, the corn borders (push-pull) concentrate more than 95% of fly populations which are thereafter suppressed by food baits. Mass trapping, without insecticides, is efficient for two of the three vegetable fly species. The growers quickly appropriate these techniques. For example, sanitation is regularly applied thanks to the locally designed "augmentarium". This confirms that agroecology is a suitable alternative to agrochemistry for crop protection purpose.We now intend to extend this methodology to foreign countries in Indian Ocean. Moreover, this agroecological dynamic may now be applied to other agricultural systems like tomatoes, citrus and mangoes. (Résumé d'auteur)

Mots-clés : analyse économique; Évaluation de projet; efficacité; gestion du risque; surveillance des déprédateurs; dynamique des populations; agriculture biologique; développement durable; projet de recherche; système de culture; agroécosystème; protection des plantes; agroécologie; lutte biologique; culture maraîchère; tephritidae; réunion; mouche des fruits

Thématique : Ravageurs des plantes; Systèmes et modes de culture

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