Open-field Tests in Host-specificity Determination of Insects for Biological Control of Weeds

Stephen L. Clement, Massimo Cristofaro

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55 Citations (Scopus)


Open-field tests may be used for the host-specificity determination of insects used in the biological control of weeds. Such tests allow insects to exercise free choice of plants without constraints associated with the use of cages. Therefore, this testing method can generate host data on candidate biocontrol agents under more natural conditions than those obtained via cage tests. The literature contains 24 studies of open-field testing, involving 13 target weed species, more than 34 species of insects and one eriophyid mite. Field-test data were used to support the release of 20 of these candidate agents into new countries. Most field tests have been conducted in concert with laboratory host-specificity tests or in response to the results of laboratory tests. This review also provides information on experimental designs, locations, categories of test plants included and the constraints of open-field testing. © 1995 Journals Oxford Ltd
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)395 - 406
Number of pages12
JournalBiocontrol Science and Technology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 1995
Externally publishedYes


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Insect Science

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