Start Date: Mar 24, 2011
End Date: Sep 30, 2011
Feral alfalfa populations will be survyed for RRA transgene. Feral alfalfa plants will be systematically sampled in an 8 km radius around six RRA fields. Leaf tissue will be tested for the presence of the RRA transgene using QuickStix™ tests at the collection site. Seed will be harvested from previously tested feral plants and tested for transgene presence. All positive plants will be confirmed for the RRA transgene using event specific PCR primers. At each collection site and RRA source field, information on variables influencing pollen-mediated transmission will be collected including topography, prevailing wind, farmer practices/history, surrounding crops/vegetation, and feral plant density. Spatial maps of RRA gene flow will be generated. Results from our study of transgene transmission from RRA hay and seed fields to feral alfalfa will help us better understand the extent of insect-mediated pollen flow across different environments, and the role feral alfalfa plays in transgene flow.