Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


New insect to patrol apple orchards

Media Release

New insect to patrol apple orchards

Hawkes Bay, New Zealand. 1 November 2012...New Zealand pipfruit growers are enhancing their management options for one of the key pests for the pipfruit industry – the codling moth – with the release of a new biocontrol agent.

Plant & Food Research scientists, with support from Pipfruit New Zealand, have been investigating the potential for Mastrus ridens, a small parasitoid wasp, to control the codling moth, one of the major pests affecting the New Zealand pipfruit industry. Following EPA approval, field appraisal will take place over the next few years to measure the effectiveness of the wasp as a long term biological control agent. The first release in commercial orchards, of 1,000 individuals, has been/will be made in Hawke’s Bay today/this week.

“Codling moth is a major issue for the pipfruit industry, with control of the pest costing between $8 and $12 million each year,” says Mike Butcher, Technical Manager of Pipfruit New Zealand. “Whilst the presence of a single moth in a shipment can impact on market access for all New Zealand apple exports to codling moth sensitive markets, the industry is also focused on reducing the use of chemical pesticides. This ultimately means we must find new ways to control pests, and the introduction of the Mastrus wasp as a biological control agent is an important new component to our system that currently includes mating disruption, a codling moth specific virus and selective chemistry. This release is an important step in meeting quarantine requirements for our premium markets.”

The Mastrus female attacks the cocoons of codling moths, laying its eggs on the moth larvae. When the wasp larvae hatch, they feed on, and eventually kill, the codling moth larva. They then emerge as adult wasps to disperse and seek new codling moth larvae on which to lay their eggs.

“Biological control agents, such as parasitoid wasps, play an increasingly important role in controlling pests as chemical interventions are reduced,” says scientist John Charles from Plant & Food Research. “This species, which originated in Kazakhstan, has been established in other countries, particularly in the USA, for control of codling moth, and these initial releases in New Zealand will help us to determine how well they survive in our environment and control the pest.”

The Mastrus wasp was approved for release by the Environmental Protection Agency in June, and thousands have since been reared in captivity.

A video showing the female Mastrus wasp laying her eggs can be found at http://plantandfood.us5.list-manage.com/track/click?u=1b46d14e528ad30bae8b3663c&id=4098e51aff&e=5b367992d8.
ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Post-Post: Brian Roche To Step Down As NZ Post CEO

Brian Roche will step down as chief executive of New Zealand Post in April 2017, having led the state-owned postal service's drive to adjust to shrinking mail volumes with a combination of cost cuts, asset sales, modernisation and expansion of new businesses. More>>

ALSO:

Company Results: Air NZ Rides The Tourism Boom With Record Full-Year Earnings

Air New Zealand has ridden the tourism boom and staved off increased competition to deliver the best full-year earnings in its 76-year history. More>>

ALSO:

New PGP: Sheep Milk Industry Gets $12.6M Crown Funding

The Sheep - Horizon Three programme aims to develop "a market driven, end-to-end value chain generating annual revenues of between $200 million and $700 million by 2030," according to a joint statement. More>>

ALSO:

Half Full: Fonterra Raises Forecast Milk Price

Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited today increased its 2016/17 forecast Farmgate Milk Price by 50 cents to $4.75 per kgMS. When combined with the forecast earnings per share range for the 2017 financial year of 50 to 60 cents, the total payout available to farmers in the current season is forecast to be $5.25 to $5.35 before retentions. More>>

ALSO:

Keep Digging: Seabed Ironsands Miner TransTasman Tries Again

The first company to attempt to gain a resource consent to mine ironsands from the ocean floor in New Zealand's Exclusive Economic Zone has lodged a new application containing fresh scientific and other evidence it hopes will persuade regulators after their initial application was turned down in 2014. More>>

Wool Pulled: Duvets Sold As ‘Premium Alpaca’ Mostly Sheep’s Wool

Rotorua business Budge Collection Limited (Budge) and sole director, Sun Dong Kim, were convicted and fined a total of $71,250 in Auckland District Court after each pleading guilty to four charges of misrepresenting how much alpaca fibre was in their duvets. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news