Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Foe Found to Flourish in Europe

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Foe Found to Flourish in Europe

Samurai wasps

Samurai wasps lay their eggs inside the brown marmorated stink bugs’ eggs, killing developing nymphs and hatching as adult wasps. (Photo: The Cornell Chronicle/Elijah J. Talamas, USDA)

Agricultural researchers in several states in the U.S. are taking a close look at Trissolcus japonicus, or Asian samurai wasp, as it targets egg masses of the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB).

Scientists with Centre for Agricultural Bioscience International (CABI) discovered the first populations of the samurai wasp in apple orchards in southeastern Switzerland. What makes this find impressive, and applicable to fellow fruit growers in the U.S. is how this wasp has traveled throughout Switzerland.

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It was found in two-consecutive years at three different sites. This find is the first time Trissolcus japonicus was rediscovered from exposed BMSB egg masses in Europe. The development is promising, but the research team contends the findings come early into research.

“Further research is needed to determine the current distribution and spread of Trissolcus japonicus and to evaluate how egg mortality may affect the H. halys populations and native non-target stink bugs in the near future,” says Tim Haye, Section Head Arthropod Biological Control at CABI who is part of an international team studying the behavior of the samurai wasp.

The findings were published in the Journal of Pest Science.