Note to readers, attached is the complete final report for FNE08-644
The purpose of this project was to evaluate the impact of organic or otherwise alternative farming methods on Colorado potato beetles resistant to conventional agricultural chemicals, specifically imidacloprid. A number of methods including bioassay, field scouting, and defoliation plots were combined to determine the impact of organic farming on beetle populations. The overall productivity and feasibility of organic potato farming in an area where high beetle pressure exists was also analyzed using cost accounting as well as yield comparisons. Although all methods were attempted no proper comparison of beetle populations before and after exposure to organic practices could be made through bioassay due to abnormally limited beetle populations. This is the main method by which susceptibility and resistance is determined. Scouting data demonstrated no statistically significant difference in Colorado potato beetle populations in organic versus conventional fields. Repeating this project is necessary before any determination can be made as to the impact of farming practices on Colorado potato beetle chemical susceptibility. As a farm we have chosen to further adopt organic farming practices as a result of this project.