Agricultural and Forestry Science

Insect pest of potatoes Tecia solanivora is devastating crops in Latin America and has reached the Canary Islands

Lepidopteran Tecia solanivora, an insect pest, is currently devastating potato crops in Latin and Central America. Equador is particularly badly hit. Known as the “Guatemala moth”, it spreads quickly. Indeed in 2000 the moth was found to have reached the Canary Islands. Since then it has been on the red list of the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization (EPPO). The pest, if uncontrolled, is considered to be a major threat to potato crops throughout southern Europe. A research team f

Genetically modified eggplants (aubergines) shown to be 30% more productive

Research, published in the online journal, BMC Biotechnology shows how researchers in Italy have used genetically modified eggplants made by the introduction of a gene that increases the level of the plant hormone indole acetic acid (IAA) to produce seedless fruits. Furthermore, these genetically modified eggplants are 30-35% more productive than conventional varieties in both greenhouse and field trials.

The public have a special liking for seedless fruits for two reasons, firstly seeds a

New evaporation model for water management

“Formulas from 1948 were being used.”

Monthly evaporation models, important for water management, can be improved by studying the dispersion of rain for each month. This is one of the conclusions in the research project of Marieke de Groen. She will defend her thesis on Monday the 29th of April. De Groen: “The subject was neglected for a long time. The monthly models contained formulas from 1948.”

Our main source of food – the agriculture sector – is very dependant on the we

Animal Welfare: European Commission supports research to improve animal breeding and food quality

How are animals fed and treated? In the aftermath of the mad cow and other food scare crises, European consumers are more and more concerned about “farm to fork” food safety and where their food comes from.

EU research can help improve animal breeding and living conditions. The European Commission discussed farm animal welfare research at European level with researchers and other stakeholders during a seminar held in Brussels yesterday. Participants addressed results achieved so far by EU-s

Researchers Find That Cattle Tuberculosis Remains in Fields For Up to 4 Months

Researchers from the University of Warwick’s Department of Biological Sciences have found evidence that bovine tuberculosis remains in fields for up to 4 months. This means that long after an outbreak of bovine TB on a farm healthy cattle may still be exposed to the disease from pasture that had been used by infected cows any time in the previous 4 months.

University of Warwick researchers Professor Elizabeth Wellington and Jamie Young tested soil samples that they had exposed to bovine TB.

Scientists step up search for BSE test

Research aimed at finding new diagnostic tests for BSE is gathering momentum at the Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research (IGER), where scientists have won a major research contract worth over £500,000 from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).

`The new contract will help us expand our search for biochemical markers associated with BSE and scrapie,` said Professor Mike Theodorou, one of the leaders of the four-year programme. His colleague, Dr Gordon All

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