Development of a Novel Approach for Monitoring the Samurai Wasp, Trissolcus japonicus (Ashmead), an Effective Parasitoid of the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, Halyomorpha halys (Stal)

Project Overview

Project Type: Graduate Student
Funds awarded in 2017: $14,813.00
Projected End Date: 08/31/2019
Grant Recipient: Virginia Tech
Region: Southern
State: Virginia
Graduate Student:
Major Professor:
Chris Bergh
Virginia Tech


  • Agronomic: soybeans
  • Fruits: apples, peaches, pears
  • Vegetables: beans, peppers, sweet corn, tomatoes


  • Pest Management: biological control, integrated pest management

    Proposal abstract:

    The brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), Halyomorpha halys (Stål), is a polyphagous invasive pest responsible for severe crop losses. Native natural enemies and insecticides have not adequately reduced BMSB populations. Recently, an adventive population of Trissolcus japonicus (Ashmead), an effective parasitoid of BMSB from Asia, was discovered in Winchester, VA and several other locations in the USA. Even in states where T. japonicus has been detected, its distribution is unknown. Determining the presence and distribution of T. japonicus and its impact on BMSB populations has become one of the highest BMSB research priorities. Current sampling methods for sampling T. japonicus are inefficient and costly, hindering efforts to monitor its populations. The development of optimized sampling tools and protocols for T. japonicus is paramount to all future efforts aimed at long-term sustainable management of BMSB. I propose to develop efficient, effective and standardized protocols for sampling T. japonicus that ultimately will provide the information necessary to track its spread and impact on BMSB populations. As anticipated contributions of T. japonicus to enhanced biological control of BMSB in the USA are expected to enable a resumption of sustainable pest management in affected cropping systems, the need for an efficient and standardized protocol for monitoring T. japonicus is essential.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    The spatial and host plant effects on the distribution and activity of T. japonicus are unknown, as is the true extent of its geographic distribution. I propose to develop efficient, effective and standardized protocols for sampling T. japonicus by examining:

    1) The relative effectiveness of sentinel eggs and yellow sticky traps as sampling methods;
    2) The effect of host plants on T. japonicus detection;
    3) The distribution of adventive T. japonicus populations in Virginia.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.