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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: INVESTIGATION OF THE BIOLOGY OF THE ARUNDO SCALE, RHIZASPIDIOTUS DONACIS, IN ITS NATIVE RANGE IN SPAIN
2011 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
Investigate the biology of the Arundo scale, a key candidate biological control agent for Arundo donax.

El objetivo de este proyecto de colaboración en investigación es estudiar la biología de la cochinilla de Arundo, una especie seleccionada como posible candidata para ser utilizada en como agente de control de Arundo donax.


1b.Approach (from AD-416)
Sites on the Mediterranean coast of Spain will be established to investigate the biology of the Arundo scale, Rhizaspidiotus donacis. The investigator will document the impact, life cycle, natural enemies, and dispersal of the scale on A. donax.

Se seleccionarán localidades de la costa Mediterránea española donde se centrará la investigación sobre la cochinilla de Arundo, Rhizaspidiotus donacis. El trabajo a desarrollar se centrará en el impacto, ciclo de vida, enemigos naturales y dispersión de la cochinilla sobre A. donax.


3.Progress Report

This report documents the on-going collaboration with the University of Alicante to investigate the biology and impact of the Arundo scale, Rhizaspidiotus donacis, a biological control agent of the invasive weed Arundo donax. In Spain, the scale has two generations per year and significantly reduces the length of stems and the weight of rhizomes (roots). A comparison of infested and un-infested rhizomes showed that infested rhizomes (roots) weighed 50% less on average than those with no arundo scale. The generation times of the scale in the Mediterranean field locations varied based on the monthly mean temperature and rainfall amounts. In laboratory studies, the scale showed a strong preference for its own local genotype of A. donax as compared to other phylogenetically more unrelated genotypes of its host plant A. donax. Three scientific manuscripts reporting this work have been submitted by the collaborator. The graduate student is in the final stages of finishing her doctorate. The ADODR is in regular contact via email with the cooperator.


Last Modified: 10/21/2014
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