The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has sent funds to help the Mauritanian teams involved and has loaned a helicopter to survey larger areas once the locusts begin to hatch. Field trials of a biopesticide are planned, under the aegis of the FAO, to control the very likely larval swarms.
A team from the CIRAD Locust Ecology and Control Internal Research Unit is currently surveying the swarming zones. Trials are planned in conjunction with the CNLA to test new products and control methods. CIRAD researchers are continuing to work in support of the FAO EMPRES programme (Emergency Prevention System for Transboundary Animal and Plant Pests and Diseases). The programme was devised in 1994 to support prevention and control operations in Africa and foster regional collaboration on the issue. Particular attention is being paid to the sustainability of preventive control operations and to introducing risk management plans.
Desert locust infestations have considerable economic, social and environmental repercussions. The last invasion was in 2003-2005, and to control the situation and halt the infestation, the African and Near Eastern countries affected and the international community invested 300 million dollars and treated an area of 13 million hectares. The 1987-1989 invasion cost some 700 million dollars in 23 countries, while 26 million hectares were treated with 32 000 tonnes of insecticide.
Chemical control is still the main control method against desert locusts. However, an alternative method was recently developed, based on an entomopathogenic fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae var. acridum. A formula containing the fungus is sold under the trade name Green Muscle. Current research looks set to confirm the initial promising results. What remains is for biopesticides to find a place in the overall preventive strategy against desert locusts.
Helen Burford | alfa
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Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
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In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
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