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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Fort Lauderdale, Florida » Invasive Plant Research Laboratory » Research » Research Project #440901

Research Project: Field surveys in Australia and Asia and host-range testing of potential insect agents for the biological control of Old World climbing fern (Lygodiu

Location: Invasive Plant Research Laboratory

Project Number: 6032-22000-013-087-R
Project Type: Reimbursable Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Jul 1, 2021
End Date: Aug 30, 2022

The objectives of this project plan are to develop environmentally safe, self-sustaining methods for the management of invasive weeds of exotic origin that threaten ecologically sensitive aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems of the United States, with a focus on the southeastern region. This project is relevant to the NP 304 Action Plan, Component 2 – Weeds; Problem Statement 2B: Biological control and ecosystem research and Problem Statement 2C: Integrated approaches to weed management; Objective 2: Survey native habitats of the candidate weeds in their geographical areas of origin for potential biological control agents. Acquire and characterize biological control agents and conduct thorough host-specificity tests informed by molecular phylogeny to determine fundamental host range. [C2, PS 2B] The objectives specific to this project are: 1. Survey for and collect reported but untested herbivores on Lygodium microphyllum primarily in the Cape York region of Australia and in Asia, particularly Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines to support quarantine research at IPRL. 2. Continue efforts to collect and improve rearing of the Australian stem borer. 3. Conduct host-range testing of the stem borer and other candidate agents.

Conduct overseas surveys and host-range testing to find and determine the safety of agents for biological control of Lygodium microphyllum.