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Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce that the 13th International Symposium Ecology of Aphidophaga will be held in Freising, Germany, from Monday 29th August  to Friday 2nd September, 2016.

The purpose of Aphidophaga conferences is to provide an international forum for the presentation and discussion of research on the biology, ecology and behaviour of organisms contributing to mortality of aphids (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Participants are encouraged to present research findings or theoretical models that may range in focus from highly specialized aphid natural enemies or peripheral biotic mortality factors, to large scale ecosystem processes of which aphids are one component. There is no intrinsic bias toward either applied or basic research. The official language of the meeting is English.

On Aphidophaga

The Working Group “Ecology of Aphidophaga” was founded in 1965 by Prof. Ivo Hodek during the first Symposium on the Ecology of Aphidophagous insects held at Liblice in the Czech Republic. It became a Working Group within the International Organization of Biological Control (IOBC) in 1987.

The purpose of Aphidophaga conferences is to provide an international forum for the presentation and discussion of research on the biology, ecology and behaviour of organisms contributing to mortality of aphids (Hemiptera Aphididae). Since the beginning of the last century, aphids have become major pests causing periodic infestations of crops in fields and greenhouses (e.g. apple and peach trees, wheat, melon) and producers may lose up to 30% of their potential yield due to direct feeding damage and vectored diseases. Conventionally, aphids have been controlled mostly by pesticides which, when used regularly and intensively, may cause the evolution of resistance, pollution of the environment, and leave toxic residues on agricultural products, potentially harming consumers. Thus, there is a growing interest among farmers and consumers in ways to improve biological control of aphids with natural enemies as an alternative to pesticides, a trend that should be encouraged with more research in the laboratory and the field to improve both efficacy and feasibility.

The upcoming Symposium is the 13th in the Aphidophaga series that are held on average every three years. Please see the Aphidophaga webpage for information on previous symposia.

Aphidophaga 13 will have the following sessions:

  1. Special Session: Chemical Ecology of Aphid Natural Enemies
    (Organizer Prof. Dr. François Verheggen, Agro-BioTech, Liege University, Belgium)

  2. Special Session: Invasive Aphidophaga
    (Organizer Dr. Annette Herz, Julius-Kühn-Institut, Germany)

  3. Predators and Biocontrol

  4. Parasitoids and Biocontrol

  5. Behavioural Ecology
    (in memory of Dr. Wolfgang Völkl)

Invited speakers

A number of distinguished colleagues have agreed to give an invited talk at the symposium:
  • Helen Roy, NERC Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, U.K.
    Harmonia axyridis: inspiring collaboration around the world

  • Josep A. Jaques, Universitat Jaume I, Spain
    How could we improve safety of aphid biological control?

  • George Heimpel, University of Minnesota, USA
    Causes and consequences of fecundity stimulation in aphids as a response parasitism

  • François J Verheggen, Université de Liège, Belgique
    Microorganisms and semiochemicals to manipulate aphidophagous predators

  • Toby JA Bruce, Rothamsted Research, UK
    The impact of volatile signals on the behaviour of aphids and their parasitoids

  • Christoph Vorburger, EAWAG & ETH Zurich, Switzerland
    Symbionts mediate coevolution between aphids and parasitoids
  • Andreas Vilcinskas, Justus-Liebig-University Gießen, Germany
    Comparative transcriptomics in predatory ladybirds