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A New Version of the Prototype for Mechanical Distribution of Beneficials

A New Version of the Prototype for Mechanical Distribution of Beneficials
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  Tropentag 2008University of Hohenheim, October 7-9, 2008 Conference on Internationa !esearch on "oo# $ec%rity, &at%ra !eso%rce 'anagement an# !%ra (eveopment    ))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))    A New Version of the Prototype for Mechanical Distribution of Beneficials Rita Papa, Giacomo Blandini, Giuseppe Emma, Sabina Failla and Giuseppe Manetto University of Catania, D!, Mec"anics Section # $ia S% Sofia, &'' # ()&*+ Catania C-., -!/0, sfailla1unict%it, 2manetto1unict%it Abstract  A new version of the device patented by University of Catania and already used in natural enemy distribution trials on greenhouse vegetable crops has been designed and built in order both to increase the work capacity and to promote a low impact pest control.This version has the same working principle of the former prototype, but materials and dimension of the hopper, the distributor and the rotating disc have been changed. With this model, set on a handle directly carried by the operator, the device performance will be essentially improved in manoeuvrability within a greenhouse. Negligible or absent impact on natural enemies proves prototype efficacy and enables its usage both with technical and economic advantages on manual distribution. Introduction n t"e last years in t"e European Union, or2anic farmin2 "as 2ro3n in terms of bot" farms4 number and invested areas, t"an5s to consumers4 ne3 demands% n t"is conte6t, taly is t"e most involved country and Sicily is t"e most or2anic crop # oriented talian re2ion%7r2anic farmin2 involves t"e use of natural enemies to control pests and in ve2etable crops t"e predatory mite  hytoseiulus persimilis  !t"ias#8enriot !cari9 P"ytoseiidae. and t"e  bu2 !rius laevigatus Fieber. 8emiptera9 !nt"ocoridae. are usually released: t"ese art"ropods respectively control t"e t3o#spotted spider mite Tetranychus urticae  ;oc" !cari9 -etranyc"idae. and t"e 3estern flo3er t"rips  "rankliniella occidentalis  Per2ande. -"ysanoptera9 -"ripidae. and t"ey are reared and distributed by commercial insectaries -ropea Gar<ia et al  %, *''=.%!t present in taly, t"ese predators are released manually in protected crops% -"is met"od, "o3ever, re>uires lon2 time and "i2" costs and does not 2uarantee a uniform distribution% n order to solve t"ese difficulties it is necessary to mec"anise t"e above#mentioned operation% ?it" t"is aim a prototype 3as desi2ned and built by t"e Mec"anics Section of t"e !2ricultural En2ineerin2 Department of t"e University of Catania Blandini et al. , *''=: Blandini et al. , *''@.% -"is prototype uses operatin2 principles 3"ic" are different from t"ose of ot"er e>uipment on t"e mar5et Giles et al. , &((): Morisa3a and Giles, &((): Gardner and Giles, &((@: ?underlic" and Giles, &(((: Pe<<i et al. , *''&: Pe<<i et al. , *''*: $an Driesc"e et al. , *''*: 7pit et al. , *''): Baraldi et al. , *''=.%-"e results obtained 3it" t"e former prototype 3ere e6cellent, nevert"eless a ne3 version of t"e prototype 3as built to improve its performances in terms of bot" manoeuvrability and ran2e of action reducin2 t"e distribution time% -"erefore, t"is study refers about t"e laboratory trials effected to assess t"e performance of t"e last version of t"e prototype%  Materials and Methods -"e prototype releases art"ropods by means of centrifu2al force developed by t"e rotation of a finned distributor disc% Aatural enemies, to2et"er 3it" t"e substrate t"ey are sold 3it", are poured into a "opper placed above t"e distributor disc and are released t"rou2" a calibrated "ole% 7n t"e a6is of t"e "opper t"ere is a rotatin2 measurin2 device 3it" fle6ible fins to 2uarantee continuous flo3% Bot" t"e distributor disc and t"e measurin2 device are driven by means of t3o direct#drive electric motors and t"ey are fi6ed to t"e same frame%Some adustments "ave been carried out on t"e first version of t"e prototype fi2% &.9 − it "as been installed on a "andle carried by a 3or5er in order to improve its manoeuvrability alon2 t"e inter#ro3s: − a s"oulder#strap "as been applied to t"e "andle to "elp t"e 3or5er to support t"e prototype: − a cylindrical articulation "as been attac"ed to t"e frame in order to re2ulate t"e inclination 3it" respect to t"e portable structure and 5eep it parallel to t"e 2round: − t"e distributor disc and t"e "opper "ave been built 3it" aluminium: moreover, t"e first device is no3 2reater t"an before +'' mm diameter vs% *'' mm. in order to improve bot" t"e centrifu2al force at t"e same rotation speed and t"e ran2e of action: t"e "opper4s volume, instead, "as been reduced &%) dm +  vs% * dm + . in order to li2"ten t"e prototype, but it still allo3s a &,''' m *  2reen"ouse treatment 3it"out refill: t"e e6it "ole "as been enlar2ed to insert bus"es 3it" different internal diameter &=*) mm. to re2ulate t"e amount of product released in t"e time: − t"e measurin2 device "as no3 a simplified s"ape to reduce production costs and t3o fle6ible  plastic fins "ave been applied alon2 its vertical a6is in order bot" to remove t"e product from t"e inner side of t"e "opper and to "elp re2ulate product flo3: − an accumulator battery = $  @%* !". "as been applied to t"e "andle and a button can operate t"e electric motors%n order to assess t"e performance of t"e ne3 version of t"e prototype, several laboratory trials "ave been carried out to evaluate some mac"ine parameters9 t"e t"ro3 direction, t"e >uantity distributed, t"e uniformity of t"ro3 in time, t"e vertical distribution of  product at different distributor "ei2"ts (' and &+' cm from t"e 2round. as 3ell as at different distances ' and @' cm. from t"e test benc" &)' cm "i2", &'' cm 3ide and made up of &' vessels to recover product at &) cm separation.% -"e trials 3ere run 3it" inert material commonly used for mar5etin2 bottles of predators9 "umid vermiculite and buc53"eat "us5s mi6ed 3it" "umid vermiculite%Moreover, e6perienced entomolo2ists "ave evaluated t"ro3 effects on natural enemies vitality, 3it" samples bot" from t"e "opper and from t"e rotatin2 disc t"ro3% Fig. 1. n the left! the old "ersion of the prototype# on the right! the new portable "ersion.  $esults Several laboratory trials 3ere carried out in order to determine t"e 3or5in2 parameters of t"e prototype accordin2 to t"e product distributed and to obtain optimum components4 conditions for later 2reen"ouse trials%-"e overall results of numerous trials, 3it" only t"e "opper and t"e measurin2 device, varyin2 t"e measurin2 device diameter and its s"ape, t"e "opper4s 3ay out "ole &=#&@#&( mm. and usin2 a = $ po3er 3it" measurin2 device rotatin2 at +' rpm and distributor disc at ='' rpm. as already defined in previous trials Blandini et al  %, *''@., "elped to establis" t"e product >uantity for distribution in 2reen"ouse% Particular attention 3as paid on len2t" and orientation of t"e fle6ible fins situated in t"e measurin2 device, in order to 2uarantee continuous flo3%t 3as decided to use t"e same measurin2 device 3it" a &= mm "opper4s 3ay out "ole for  hytoseiulus persimilis  3it" "umid vermiculite. and a &( mm one for !rius laevigatus 3it" buc53"eat "us5s mi6ed 3it" "umid vermiculite.% n t"ese confi2urations a &,''' m * 2reen"ouse needs #) bottles +) 2 eac" one. of  . persimilis  about ( 2min. and * bottles =' 2 eac" one. of !. laevigatus  about = 2min.%-"e trials carried out on t"e distribution uniformity in time 3it" !. laevigatus  and its substrate s"o3 fi2% *. t"e >uantities delivered every +' s varied bet3een @%(  +%& 2 3it"out e6treme values and bet3een &'%  *%) 2 includin2 e6treme values% n t"e first case t"e data  processin2 s"o3s a ++ C$ Coefficient of $ariation., in t"e ot"er a + C$% -"e product distributed is subect to a s"arp decrease until t"e && t"  sample, 3"ile t"e ne6t samples are >uite constant% -"e same trials run 3it"  . persimilis  and its substrate s"o3 fi2% +. t"e >uantities distributed varied bet3een =%)  '%( 2 3it"out e6treme values and bet3een =%@  '%) 2 includin2 e6treme values% n t"e first case t"ere is a ' C$, in t"e ot"er a ) C$% -"e amount of  product distributed is >uite constant until t"e &+ t"  sample, t"en it "as a pro2ressive decline till t"e last sample%Furt"er trials are necessary to verify if t"e prototype is able to 5eep t"e re2ulation constant in time and even for several treatments% 12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293001234567891011 %sa&ple'%g' 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 1801234567 %sa&ple'%g' Fig. (. Mean "alues of buc)wheat hus)s &i*ed with hu&id "er&iculite and O. laevigatus  deli"ered %g' e"ery +, sFig. +. Mean "alues of hu&id "er&iculite and  P. persimilis deli"ered %g' e"ery +, s -"e results of vertical distribution fi22%  and ). s"o3 si2nificant differences bet3een t"e trial types (' cm "ei2"t and '#@' cm from t"e test benc": &+' cm "ei2"t and '#@' cm from t"e test benc". as re2ards bot" product >uantity monitored at different "ei2"ts of t"e test  benc" and product type 8$ H "umid vermiculite: D$H dry vermiculite: B$H buc53"eat "us5s mi6ed 3it" "umid vermiculite.% -"e trials s"o3 t"e "umid vermiculite is able to "it t"e tar2et in 2reater >uantity 3"ile t"e dry vermiculite in lo3er >uantities% But in any trial t"e product dispersion is 2reater t"an in previous trials carried out 3it" t"e old version of t"e prototype Blandini et al  %, *''@.%n 2eneral, comparin2 t"e t3o trials at ' cm from t"e test benc" and t"en t"e t3o trials  at @' cm, more material is recovered less dispersion. in bot" cases fi6in2 t"e prototype at (' cm from t"e 2round irrespective of t"e product used% 15 30 45 60 75 90 105 12005101520253035 -, c& fro& the test bench DVHVBV height %c&'productuantities%/' 15 30 45 60 75 90 105 12005101520253035 0, c& fro& the test bench DVHVBV height %c&'productuantities%/'Fig. -. Product uantities collected %/' in the trials with the prototype , c& fro& the ground 15 30 45 60 75 90 105 120 135 15005101520253035 -, c& fro& the test bench DVHVBV height %c&'productuantities%/' 15 30 45 60 75 90 105 120 135 15005101520253035 0, c& fro& the test bench DVHVBV height %c&'productuantities%/'Fig. 2. Product uantities collected %/' in the trials with the prototype 1+, c& fro& the ground t s"ould be "i2"li2"ted t"at t"e results s"o3 2ood a2reement bet3een prototype and tar2et "ei2"t 3it" most concentration of distributed product% 3onclusions and utloo)  From t"e laboratory trials, dosa2e and distribution mec"anism of t"e prototype seem 3ell suited to biolo2ical pest control strate2ies% Ae2li2ible or absent impact on natural enemies  proves prototype efficacy and enables its usa2e bot" 3it" tec"nical and economic advanta2es on manual distribution% Furt"er trials s"ould be carried out in order to verify t"e capability of deliverin2 over time t"e same product >uantities%-"e trials carried out to assess t"e vertical distribution of product at different distributor "ei2"ts as 3ell as at different distances from t"e test benc", "ave s"o3n a 2ood a2reement  bet3een prototype and tar2et "ei2"t 3it" most concentration of distributed product%?it" t"is ne3 version, set on a "andle directly carried by t"e operator, t"e device  performance is improved in manoeuvrability% Conse>uently, 2reater 3or5 capacity and "i2"er 3or5 >uality 3ill be ac"ieved in 2reen"ouses and in field%Even t"e possible use of small battery#run electrical motors t"an5s to t"e limited po3er usa2e, can reduce costs and environmental impact%-"e preliminary trials are really encoura2in2 and let us t"in5 about a possible 3ide diffusion of t"is device for natural enemies4 distribution in or2anic crops% -"e prototype could  be even tractor driven or carried on mec"anically driven frames over t"e crop ro3s in 2reen"ouses%  $eferences Baraldi G%, Bur2io G%, Caprara C%, /an<oni !%, Maini S%, Martelli R%, Pe<<i F%, *''=% Distribu<ione meccanica di  hytoseiulus persimilis % !tti Giornate Fitopatolo2ic"e% Riccione RA. *@#*( mar<o *''=% $ol% & )=+#)@'%Blandini G%, Emma G%, Failla S%, Manetto G%, *''@% ! Prototype for Mec"anical Distribution of Beneficials% Proceedin2s of GreenSys *''@ I8i2" -ec"nolo2y for Green"ouse System Mana2ementI% Aapoli, #= 7ttobre *''@ it is bein2 printed.%Blandini G%, Emma G%, Failla S%, Manetto G%, *''@% Prototipo per la distribu<ione meccanica di anta2onisti naturali% !tti Conve2no Aa<ionale !! J-ecnolo2ie innovative nelle filiere9 orticola, vitivinicola e olivicolo#olearia%K Pisa e $olterra )#@ settembre *''@% $ol% &%Blandini G%, Failla S%, Manetto G%, -ropea Gar<ia G%, Siscaro G%, Lappal /%, *''=% Prove  preliminari di distribu<ione meccanica di anta2onisti naturali% !tti Giornate Fitopatolo2ic"e% Riccione RA. *@#*( mar<o *''=% $ol% & ))@#)=*%Gardner N% and Giles ;%, &((@% Mec"anical distribution of Chrysoperla rufilabris  and Trichogramma pretiuosum 9 Survival and uniformity of disc"ar2e after spray dispersal in a>ueous suspension% Biolo2ical Control O &. &+O#&*%Giles D% ;%, Gardner N%, Studer 8% E%, &(()% Mec"anical release of predacious mites for  biolo2ical pest control in stra3berries% -ransact% of t"e !S!E +O ). &*O(#&*(=%Morisa3a -%, Giles D%;%, &(()% Effects of mec"anical "andlin2 on Green /ace3in2 /arvae  Chrysoperla rufilabris .% -ransact% of t"e !S!E, &&, =')#='@%7pit G% P%, Aec"ols N% R%, Mar2olies D% C%, ?illiams ;% !%, *'')% Survival, "ori<ontal distribution, and economics of releasin2 predatory mites !cari9 P"ytoseidae. usin2 mec"anical  blo3ers% Biolo2ical Control, ++, +#+)&%Pe<<i F%, Rondelli $%, Baraldi G%, *''*% Mec"anical distribution of P"ytoseiids in 2reen"ouse crops% Rivista di n2e2neria !2raria, ++ +., ++#+(%Pe<<i F%, Rondelli $%, Baraldi G%, *''&, Mec"anical distribution of p"ytoseiides in 2reen"ouse crops% !tti su CD $ Conve2no Aa<ionale !!, $ieste, &&#& settembre%-ropea Gar<ia G%, Lappal /%, Siscaro G%, Blandini G%, Failla S%, Manetto G%, *''=% Mec"anical Distribution of Beneficials9 /aboratory -ests% Proceedin2s of Jnte2rated Control in Protected Crops, Mediterranean ClimateK% Murcia, Spa2na, &#&O ma22io *''=% 7BC?PRS Bullettin SSA &'*@#+&&), SBA (*#('=@#&O@#*., $ol *(.  *''=, pp% +(#%$an Driesc"e R% G%, /yon S%, Sanderson N%, Smit" -%, /opes P%, Mac!very S%, Rusine5 -%, Couc" G%, *''*% Green"ouse trials in Massac"usetts and Ae3 0or5 3it"  Amblyseius cucumeris 9 effects of formulation and mec"anical application% 7BC3prs Bulletin, *) &., *@+#*@=%?underlic" /% R%, Giles D% ;%, &(((% Field assessment of ad"esion and "atc" of C"rysoperla e22s mec"anically applied in li>uid carriers% Biolo2ical Control, &, &)(#&=@%
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