Why Augmentative Biological Control Holds Promise for Advancing Agriculture in Developing Countries
Numerous examples show the success of augmentative biological control efforts. With adequate support and capacity building in place, the approach can be economical and make agricultural systems more sustainable and improve the human and institutional capacity of developing countries.
How Flea-Killing Fungus Could Keep Prairie Dogs From Spreading Plague
Prairie dogs in the western U.S. can carry the bacterium that causes bubonic plague, and their fleas play a primary role in spreading it among prairie dogs and to other animals. A group of scientists say insect-pathogenic fungi that target those fleas could be a useful tool in interrupting that transmission route.
Drought-Tolerant, Aphid-Hungry Lacewing Species Arrives in Americas
Sometimes, an invasive species is a good thing. The discovery of a species of lacewing, Chrysoperla zastrowi, established in arid regions of the U.S. and Central America offers potential for biological control of aphids, mites, and other crop pests in those locales.
Study Shows Elevation Affects Fly’s Use as Natural Enemy of Invasive Weed
In Nepal, the gall-inducing eupatorium gall fly (Procecidochares utilis) is deployed as a biological control agent against the invasive weed Ageratina adenophora. A new study by researchers at Tribhuvan University and the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Integrated Pest Management shows size and abundance of galls induced by the fly are influenced by elevation, knowledge that can help in fine-tuning P. utilis-based biocontrol efforts.