Farmers are being encouraged to take part in a survey as part of efforts to improve barley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV) management in winter cereal crops.
Results from the survey will be used to build a regional picture of BYDV pressures.
The survey will also be used to help identify practical control approaches, including the industry’s requirements for decision-support tools.
BYDV is transmitted by more than 20 aphid species. The most important are the oat bird-cherry aphid, the corn leaf aphid, the English grain aphid and the green bug.
Aphids acquire BYDV by feeding on infected plants and transmit the virus in subsequent feedings.
Charlotte Rowley, who manages pest research at AHDB, announced the launch of the survey at the AHDB Agronomists’ Conference earlier this week.
She said: “Our BYDV work will get the industry ready to grow cereals without neonicotinoid seed treatments.
“The development of BYDV management tools, including those based on aphid monitoring, such as the use of risk forecasts and in-field sticky traps, will be shaped by the survey results.”
The project will deliver results by next autumn – when cereals will be drilled without the protection afforded by a neonicotinoid seed treatment.
Led by the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), the survey has been put together by the project’s industry partner, Agrii.
The survey is open until 31 January 2019.