Survey confirms high levels of TuYV infection in oilseed rape crops across the UK

LG Seeds - 19th June 2017

Oilseed rape yields could be impacted this season as levels of TuYV infection are confirmed to be as high as 100% in some sites, and generally indicate high levels of infection across most of the country, according to plant breeders Limagrain UK.

Turnips yellows virus (TuYV) is spread by the peach potato aphid (Myzus persicae), and can impact yields by as much as 30% in highly infected situations, oil content by 3% whilst increasing levels of glucosinolates and erucic acid.

The results come from an annual survey carried out by Limagrain, in collaboration with Agrii. Random leaf samples were taken from oilseed rape varieties in all of Agrii’s trials across the UK and tested in Limagrain’s laboratories at Rothwell, Lincs.

“We know that levels of TuYV incidence are associated with the distribution of aphids in the autumn before. Levels of aphids in the autumn of 2016 were at levels comparable to 2014, which was a high infection year, and this year again the link between high numbers of aphids in the autumn and corresponding levels of infections is clear,” says Dr Vasilis Gegas, senior oilseed rape breeder with Limagrain.

“You would expect to see high levels of infection in the more traditional OSR growing regions -but even here levels of infection are higher than ever before -100% of samples taken in Fincham, Kings Lynn were infected with TuYV, and 90% of samples taken from the Woolpit site in Suffolk were infected.”

“Most surprising of all was that 75% of leaf samples taken from the Balbeggie site in Perth were infected, and this is the first time that we have seen such high levels of infection in Scotland.”

“However, we are also seeing higher than expected levels of infection in the west country, with 50% samples infected at the Brackley site, and 45% at the Agrifocus site in Swindon.

“It is clear from these results that TuYV is endemic in the UK OSR crop, irrespective of region and is directly linked to the autumn aphid migration.”

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