Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Better beetle sought for salt cedar control

29.06.2006
Beetles from Uzbekistan are more prolific salt cedar eaters than beetles from Greece. At least that's what Texas Agricultural Experiment Station researchers hope.

Uzbekistan salt cedar beetles being released by the Experiment Station's entomology department are the same species as those released on the salt cedar stands near Lake Meredith. They are just from a different collection point, said Vanessa Carney, Experiment Station entomology research associate.

Researchers first looked at latitude and longitude to find the beetle they thought would be best suited to this region, and they came up with salt cedar beetles from Posidi, Greece, Carney said.

"Because some of the releases in other states haven't been successful, we're starting to think it may be more complicated than that," she said. "These beetles from Uzbekistan seem to be most suited to our climate at the same latitude and longitude."

At the Meredith site, the Posidi beetles released in 2004 have made it through two winters and had two summers of success, Carney said. However, because of an early warm-up followed by a cold spell, they seem to be less prolific this summer and haven't exploded in numbers.

Dr. Jerry Michels, Experiment Station entomology research project leader, and Carney are making new releases of the Uzbekistan beetle this year in the heavy salt cedar stands on private land north of Borger. The new site was selected because of its remote location and because it is not subject to other control methods, such as fire and chemical treatments, Carney said.

A total of 25 egg masses have been released at three different sites, all within cages, Carney said. While the Posidi beetles are approved for open release, the Uzbekistan beetles have not been approved by Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service for open release so they must be enclosed in tents.

The beetles being released into the confined salt cedar trials were provided by Dr. Jack DeLoach with the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service at Temple, where other studies are being done.

Each egg mass had 10 to 30 eggs. Another 60 adults were released between the three sites, Carney said. Each egg will go through three larval stages, during which time they feed on the salt cedar, before they drop into the ground and emerge a week later as a beetle.

"Almost immediately they will start mating and will live for about 30 days," she said. "We're doing more extensive work on those figures in our lab at Bushland. We want to determine how many eggs they lay, the life cycle times and how many batches of eggs they lay in a lifetime."

Damage is what the researchers want to start seeing, Carney said. The Posidi beetles at Lake Meredith defoliate small branches, but the damage hasn't been widespread. So far, the Uzbekistan beetles haven't been here long enough for the scientists to gauge what they can do.

"They just came in May and the first year we don't expect to see major damage," she said. "But they may defoliate the trees within the cages. We were warned that it will go quickly, and we may run out of food within the tents."

Michels and Carney said their Texas salt cedar beetle work is part of a larger study that is looking at beetles from Fukang, China; Crete, Greece; Tunisia, Africa; and Turpan, China.

These four strains of beetles will be released in various sites throughout the U.S., with emphasis on establishing them at two Texas sites, and in Colorado, Wyoming, Utah and Nebraska.

"What we want to see is the differences of these strains at different latitudes," Michels said. "People have released a strain here or a strain there, but what we want to do is release all of these strains at each site and maybe then be able to make some decisions that are backed up by research."

Ultimately, the study should help determine which strains are adapted to which latitude, he said. The Crete strain was released from Wyoming to South Texas and did not work everywhere. At the same time, some of these strains are new and haven't been tested anywhere.

This new widespread study will begin once researchers receive approval from USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Michels said.

Dr. Jerry Michels | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.tamu.edu

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Fighting a destructive crop disease with mathematics
21.06.2017 | University of Cambridge

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: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Extensive Funding for Research on Chromatin, Adrenal Gland, and Cancer Therapy

28.06.2017 | Awards Funding

Predicting eruptions using satellites and math

28.06.2017 | Earth Sciences

Extremely fine measurements of motion in orbiting supermassive black holes

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>