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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: BIOLOGY AND CONTROL OF TICKS OF VETERINARY AND HUMAN IMPORTANCE

Location: Tick and Biting Fly Research

Title: Rhizaspidiotus Donacis (Hemiptera, Diaspididae) Licensed Agent for control. First Results of Biological Monitoring Plan of Giant Reed in the U.S.

Authors
item Cortes, Elena -
item Marcos-Garcia, Mariangeles -
item Goolsby, John

Submitted to: Popular Publication
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: September 30, 2012
Publication Date: October 12, 2012
Citation: Cortes, E.A., Marcos-Garcia, M., Goolsby, J. 2012. Rhizaspidiotus Donacis (Hemiptera, Diaspididae) Licensed Agent for control. First Results of Biological Monitoring Plan of Giant Reed in the U.S. Popular Publication. 40:8-12.

Interpretive Summary: This article describes the impact of the invasive weed, giant reed, in the watersheds of the Southwestern USA and field work conducted in Spain regarding the biology and impact of the arundo scale, Rhizaspidiotus donacis, which is a biological control agent for the invasive weed, Arundo donax. This popular article is written in Spanish and distributed throughout Spain and Latin America.

Technical Abstract: Field research studies in Spain conducted to determine the biology of the arundo scale, Rhizaspidiotus donacis, were consistent with laboratory studies conducted in the U.S. Although field data from Spain indicate that the arundo scale can significantly impact giant reed, Arundo donax, additional time is needed to document similar impacts in the U.S. In addition, the impact of the scale may be greater than documented in Spain because of the positive interaction with the arundo wasp, Tetramesa romana. The arundo wasp creates gall tissue on the lateral side shoots that are ideal for development of the arundo scale. Since the arundo wasp is now widely established along the Rio Grande River between Texas and the northeastern border states of Mexico, the synergy between these two monophagous (specialist) insects may allow for significant impacts on the target weed where it is most damaging. The arundo scale and arundo wasp represent the first biological control agents released for a grassy weed, which is an important achievement for the science of biological control and management of invasive weeds.

Last Modified: 4/19/2014
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