The California Walnut Board and its production Research Advisory Council Entomology Working Group was one of five recipients of the 2013 California Department of Pesticide Regulation Integrated Pest Management Innovator Award.
The council was established seven years ago to address four key areas with working groups: entomology, orchard management, plant pathology and genetic improvement.
The effort involves a multidisciplinary collaboration among the walnut industry, the University of California and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, according to a news release.
The entomology working group looks for environmentally friendly yet economical ways to control major walnut pests.
Among those is the codling moth, against which growers have made substantial progress with the widespread adoption of pheromone mating disruption.
In many cases, mating disruption has reduced codling populations to the point that supplemental insecticide applications are no longer needed. The transition has occurred sometimes within two to four sequential seasons of use, too.
The practice involves inundating an area with female codling moth pheromones. The males become so confused that they can't find a female with which to mate.
The IPM Innovator Award, established in 1994, recognizes organizations that use IPM in innovative ways to reduce pesticide use and address pest-related challenges.