Uncultivated Field Edges Provide Habitat for Beneficial Insects

Researchers at the University of Illinois found that beneficial arthropods are nearly twice as abundant and diverse in uncultivated field edges in the spring as they are in areas that are cropped, if the edges offer plant diversity and not just mowed grass. The study findings were published in the Journal of Insect Science. The study focused on overwintering arthropods in organic farm fields and field edges in Illinois, because use of pesticides may wipe out many of these beneficial creatures. Researchers note that the overwintering predatory insects can play a key role in controlling pest infestations at the start of the growing season.