Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers to fight killer slugs

10.06.2005


If you see men crawling around in the neighbour’s garden at dusk wearing headlights, it may well be that they are researchers hunting for Spanish slugs.



Spanish slugs were previously seen as a garden nuisance, but now they have started to become a serious problem also for commercial horticulture, affecting strawberries and cabbage. A glaring example is garden owners in Hordaland county, who has had up to hundred thousand slugs in their garden, while a lot of strawberry and cabbage crops were lost various places along the western coast.

The Research Council of Norway has recently awarded funding for four years to a project for mapping the spread of Spanish slugs, also known as killer slugs, Iberian slugs or Arion lusitanicus in Latin. They will study the biology of these slugs and try various methods to get rid of the annoying snails.


Therefore the researchers will be the busiest in well-kept villa gardens and in berry- and vegetable farming. They will crawl around with headlamps at dusk and in the dark, they will weigh, count and register Spanish slugs and also other slug species.

For the moment researchers do not know enough about the biology and living habits of the Spanish slug in Norway, even such fundamental aspects as life cycle, wintering and spread must be researched on much more.

In the first year of the project we will mostly do basic research and this can give us a much better understanding of how this species live in relation to factors in the environment, and consequently, how we can fight against it.

It is also important to increase our knowledge of which species of plants the slug prefers and which ones it avoids.

It is urgent to find efficient measures. Clear indications of crossing between Spanish slugs and black slugs have been found, just like in Sweden. Some have feared that such a crossbreeding can develop into a kind of superslug.

The brown slug, as the Spanish slug got to be called by “the people”, was first observed in Norway in 1988. It can be found naturally in many countries, but it creates a problem in Switzerland, Austria, Germany, parts of Poland, parts of the Netherlands and Belgium, and in Scandinavia without Iceland and the Faeroe Islands.

The natural enemies of the Spanish slug are investigated in many countries. A few methods have been observed and tested in a scientific way, these include both insects, animals and different slug agents. The Norwegian project on Spanish slugs has cooperation partners in several European regions, among other places in Sweden, Scotland and England.

Torstein Solhøy | alfa
Further information:
http://www.uib.no/info/english/

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht Microjet generator for highly viscous fluids
13.02.2018 | Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology

nachricht Sweet route to greater yields
08.02.2018 | Rothamsted Research

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Decoding the structure of the huntingtin protein

22.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Camera technology in vehicles: Low-latency image data compression

22.02.2018 | Information Technology

Minimising risks of transplants

22.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>