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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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

Location: Tick and Biting Fly Research

2009 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

Arundo donax L., carrizo cane, giant reed is an exotic and invasive weed of riparian habitats and irrigation canals of the Rio Grande River Basin (RGB) and the southwestern U.S. Carrizo cane dominates these habitats, which leads to: loss of biodiversity; catastrophic stream bank erosion; damage to bridges; increased costs for chemical and mechanical control along transportation corridors, and impedes law enforcement activities on the international border. Additionally, this invasive weed competes for water resources in an arid region where these resources are critical to the environment, agriculture, and municipal users. Biological control using insects from the native range of carrizo cane may be the best option for long-term management of this weed. One of the key agents discovered during the foreign exploration program for A. donax is the Arundo scale, Rhizaspidiotus donacis. This scale insect causes considerable damage to the target plant in its native range; however, little is known about its field biology. Collaborators with the University of Alicante, Spain, are conducting intensive field studies of the scale and address key questions about the biology and impact of this agent. This information will be used to improve mass rearing and release methods in the biological control program. The ADODR is in regular contact via email with the cooperator.


Last Modified: 9/22/2014
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