Friday, May 27, 2016

USDA to Release Russian Wasps Against the Emerald Ash Borer

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Spathius galinae has been approved for release to help control the emerald ash borer,
 an invasive beetle that has devastated ash tree populations across the United States.
Photo by USDA and University of Delaware.
With the emerald ash borer beetle devastating ash tree populations throughout the United States, solutions to help fight the insect are critical. Thanks in part to research from the University of Delaware and the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, a host-specific parasitoid wasp from Russia — Spathius galinae — has been approved for release to help control the invasive beetle. Some of the research findings were recently released in the May edition of the journal Biological Control.

Timothy Watt, the lead author on the paper, said that the researchers looked at the effects of temperature on the parasitoid’s development in reproductive biology.

“Insects in general are ectothermic — they’re basically controlled by temperature,” he said. “Their physiology and metabolism are strongly influenced by ambient temperature, almost like they’re programmed in a way.”.....To Read More....

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