Oct 29, 2014
Search engine identifies tree fruit pests

A new search engine tool for identifying diseases, insect and mite pests and beneficials of tree fruit is now online. The search can be accessed in its entirety from the Michigan State University (MSU) Integrated Pest Management website.

Users can quickly search for diseases, pest and beneficial insects and mites that are found in apples, cherries, peaches, pears and plums. The content currently in the search engine is based in large part on the “Tree Fruit Field Guide to Insect, Mite, and Disease Pests and Natural Enemies of Eastern North America,” with some updated and new content based on current diseases and pests in the region.

Searches can be made using a combination of either the name of a particular disease or insect, the location on the plant where evidence of the disease or insect has been found, the plant growth stage or the crop. There are also apple- and cherry-specific versions on the MSU Apples website and the MSU Cherries website.

The tool can be used from any device that can access the Internet, but plans for a more mobile-friendly version are already underway, as is the addition of other crops and their pests.

Users can contribute to improve this search engine by visiting one of the links and conducting searches. Each search will help developers better understand how it is being used and what needs to be improved. In addition, users can complete a short survey after using the search engine, according to MSU.

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