Congratulations to UH West Oʻahu’s Dr. Albie Miles on the publication of “Vineyard proximity to riparian habitat influences Western grape leafhopper (Erythroneura elegantula Osborn) population” in the peer-reviewed journal Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment (Vol. 211). Together with colleagues Houston Wilson, Kent M. Daane and Miguel A. Altieri, Miles conducted a study to evaluate the impact of vineyard proximity to riparian habitat on the biological control and population densities of the Western grape leafhopper. The study is a part Dr. Miles’ natural science research measuring the impact of biological diversity on agroecosystem functioning, a topic that figures prominently in the new Sustainable Community Food Systems curriculum. The team found:
- Natural enemies did not appear to colonize the vineyard from the riparian area
- Crop vigor was decreased at the vineyard edge.
- Leafhopper egg deposition and nymph densities were lower at vineyard edge.
- Leafhopper response to changes in crop vigor can influence their abundance.