Based on data from 1990 to 2010 at 36 sites in six provinces of northern China, we showed a marked increase in abundance of three types of generalist arthropod predators (ladybirds, lacewings, and spiders) and decreased abundance of aphid pests associated with wide-scale adoption of Bt cotton and reduced insecticide sprays in this crop. We also found evidence that the predators might provide additional biocontrol services spilling over from Bt cotton fields onto neighboring crops (maize, peanut and soybean). This work extends results from general studies evaluating ecological effects of Bt crops by demonstrating that such crops can promote biocontrol services in agricultural landscapes.
- Lu Y.H., Wu K.M., Jiang Y.Y., Guo Y.Y. & Desneux N. (2012). Widespread adoption of Bt cotton and insecticide decrease promotes biocontrol services.Nature, 487, 362-365.