Since 1990, vegetable crops in Martinique have suffered severe problems caused by the rapid multiplication of the whitefly Bemisia tahuci (Gennadius) (Hcmiptera. Aleyrodidae). The same phenomenon is found throughout the Caribbean and into the South of United States, and seems to be linked to the existence of a special fom1 of this species, ctmracterized by a low sensitivity to most insecticides. Damage is found on most vegetable crops, but mainly on those grown in greenhouses. No whitefly-transmitted virus has been found in Martinique. Chemical control is insufficient and only a few authorized products arc somewhat effective: phosalone, bifcnthrine, profenofos, endosulfan. The existence of a parasite wasp of the Eretmocems genus and of several predators makes it possible to consider natural biological control ofBemisia as part of integrated pest management. This method has given good results on 11irips pa/mi and we compared nearby plots under intensive chemical control or integrated pest managemenL. Six trials on tomatoes in open field show a slight development of B. tahaci populations under integrated pest management whilst rapid mulliplication was found under chemical control. However, in greenhouse cultivation, the right balance is rarely found, and damages are present.


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