Small Australian bile-forming wasps can help in the natural control of earworms, significantly reducing the ability to spread one of the worst invasive species on the Portuguese coast. Conclusion is a study that has just been published Journal of Environmental Management.
In a statement, the University of Coimbatore revealed that the investigation began in 2015 with the intentional release of an agent to biologically control an agent. This deliberate release made Portugal the first country to do so in continental Europe. But before that, its introduction had been studied a decade earlier by the Center for Functional Ecology (CFE), the Faculty of Science and Technology of the University of Cobra (FCTUC), and a team from the Escola Superior Agria (ESAC). Polytechnic Institute of Coimbatore (IPC).
Investigators from the CFE and ESAC have released a very specific Australian bile-forming wasp (Tricylogaster acacillongifolia) to control ear acacia (Acacia longifolia) at 61 locations along the Portuguese coast since 2015.
Following this release, a follow-up was taken to study the establishment, spread, and effects in the first years after the insect’s release.
The results of this monitoring, now published, suggest that, although the initial installation was “limited by the fact that the agent was introduced to the Southern Hemisphere, the installation rate greatly increased after the stations synchronized their life cycle with the Northern Hemisphere. Went.” Spike wool phenology ”.
“Currently, there is an exponential growth of the population, who are rapidly moving away from places of liberation. It was observed that after a few years, ear acacia branches with the gases of Trichilogaster acacylongifolia decreased the production of pods (84% less), seeds (95% less) and secondary branches (33% less), to the coordinator. Underlined. Study, Hélia Marchante and Elizabete Marchante.
CFE researcher and first author of the study, Francisco López-Núñez, noted that “although the introduction and establishment of this biological control agent is still recent and has limited distribution across the region, the now published result was the successful establishment of the agent Portugal confirms this and shows that it is negatively affecting the reproduction and growing ability of acacia-the-cobs.
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