Tackling the scale insect problem in Kenya

Scale insects on leaf
Scale insects are a group of very small insects that often don’t look like an average plant pest, but they are a growing problem in countries like Kenya. The pests attack important crops and plants that are integral to the country’s economy such as coffee, citrus and mango and in some cases have been known…
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Endophyte may protect tomatoes from Tuta absoluta pest attack

Healthy tomato crop
Successful colonization of tomato seedlings with Beauveria bassiana fungus could reduce crop losses  Trials in Brazil suggest seedling inoculation with the entomopathogenic fungus Beauveria bassiana could be a viable commercial option for marketing pre-colonized tomato plants ‘resistant’ to the tomato leaf miner Tuta absoluta.
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New paper calls for scientific diplomacy in plant health

Co-authored by leading plant health community representatives a newly-published paper calls for an international research collaboration in the fight against plant pests and diseases. The paper, published in Nature Plants, brought together 28 institutions, including CABI,  and analyses new perspectives and challenges on global phytosanitary research coordination; particularly as human trade and movement continues to…
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CABI refurbishes MoFA laboratory for biological control of invasive species in Ghana

Through its global Action on Invasives (AoI) programme, CABI has refurbished a laboratory housed by the Plant Protection and Regulatory Services Directorate of Ghana’s Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA-PPRSD). The lab supports research efforts aimed at discovering and promoting locally practicable biological control solutions for managing invasive species in Ghana. The refurbishment consisted of…
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Controlling Himalayan balsam, one of the UK’s most invasive weeds

himalayan balsam flower
It’s spring – the growing season. We take a look at Himalayan balsam (Impatiens glandulifera), one of the UK’s most invasive and problematic weed species, and the work CABI is doing to combat its spread. Why is Himalayan balsam such a big problem?
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Is parthenium’s stem boring weevil safe for release in Pakistan? An update on host range testing

Dr Kazam Ali examining Tagetes erecta plant species for any eggs
Native to tropical America, Parthenium hysterophorus, commonly known as parthenium, has invaded and become a major weed in over 50 countries. Parthenium has covered thousands of hectares of productive and range land in Pakistan. It is an annual herb which effects agriculture, damages biodiversity, affects human and animal health and adversely impacts economic development.
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Dogs can sniff out huanglongbing months before symptoms appear

Study finds that using dogs to survey for citrus greening disease is more accurate and efficient than current methods. Huanglongbing, or citrus greening disease, is a bacterial disease of citrus plants cause by Candidatus Liberibacter spp. It is thought to have been primarily an insect endophyte, but made the jump to its alternative host – citrus plants…
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European ash trees resist devastating insect pest

Ash trees may be more prepared to face invasive threats than previously realised. The European ash (Fraxinus excelsior) is a common site in towns, forests and parkland across the United Kingdom. Since the 1990s, ash trees across Europe have been devastated by ash dieback, a disease caused by the fungal pathogen (Hymenoscyphus fraxineus), which has…
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Weed biological control: Challenges and opportunities

Michael Day and Arne Witt have just published ‘Weed biological control: Challenges and opportunities’ in the first edition of a new journal, Journal of Asian-Pacific Weed Science Society. Their paper traces the history of weed biological control and points to the many successes.
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New study: current resource use in areas of increasing prosopis cover is unsustainable

By Dr Urs Schaffner, Head Ecosystems Management In a newly-published paper in the journal Ecosystems Services: ‘The impact of invasive species on social-ecological systems: Relating supply and use of selected provisioning ecosystem services’, CABI scientists joined an international team of researchers who, in respect of the invasive weed prosopis, conducted the first study that integrates…
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