Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists Discuss Improved Biopesticides For Locust Control In West Africa

Date:
February 18, 2005
Source:
Virginia Tech
Summary:
Two Virginia Tech scientists contributed by invitation to an international scientific meeting called by Abdoulaye Wade, president of Senegal, to identify strategies for the control of the ongoing locust outbreak in West Africa. Last year, locusts stripped fields of crops and trees of foliage across several countries, causing severe income and food supply loss.

Blacksburg, Va. – Two Virginia Tech scientists contributed by invitation to an international scientific meeting called by Abdoulaye Wade, president of Senegal, to identify strategies for the control of the ongoing locust outbreak in West Africa. Last year, locusts stripped fields of crops and trees of foliage across several countries, causing severe income and food supply loss.

Larry Vaughan, associate program director of the USAID-funded Integrated Pest Management Collaborative Research Support Program (IPM CRSP) and research associate in the Office of International Research, Education, and Development (OIRED), and Foster Agblevor, associate professor of biological systems engineering, traveled to Senegal to speak about their biopesticide research at the "International Scientific Seminar on Desert Locusts" held in Dakar in January.

Biopesticides are types of pesticides derived from natural materials such as microbes, principally viruses, bacteria, and fungi. "The biopesticide that is registered for use in West Africa derives from a fungus that is a specific pathogen of locusts and grasshoppers. It specifically targets those insects and does not affect non-target organisms," Vaughan said.

"The persistence of base biopesticides is low in the environment because of degradation from sunlight," Agblevor said. "We have developed coating technologies to improve on the environmental persistence of the biopesticide, specifically a lignin coating for the spores, which increases their resistance to ultraviolet radiation." Research at Virginia Tech demonstrated UV resistance 15 times greater for coated spores as compared to non-coated spores. "This technology is applicable to many other biopesticides and should make them more effective as well,." Agblevor said

Local officials are calling the infestation in West Africa the worst in 18 years. The pests invaded the region last summer, affecting millions of acres of farmland. The locusts are in recession now because they do not breed in the dry season, but when the annual spring rains begin, they are expected to return.

Participants at the seminar included ministers of agriculture from other West African nations, national plant protection directors and locust control personnel, military officers in charge of locust control campaigns, representatives from regional and international organizations, and locust scientists.

Vaughan spoke about the potential for operational use of biopesticides developed at Virginia Tech during the secondary invasion of locusts that is expected in 2005. Agblevor discussed long-term formulation research that could expand the circumstances under which locust biopesticides may be used.

Vaughan has been active in locust control since 1997, when he assumed coordination of the USAID-funded project at Virginia Tech, "Development of Biopesticides for Grasshopper and Locust Control in Sub-Saharan Africa," which wrapped up in June 2004. Agblevor participated in this project by developing means of protecting short-lived fungal spores from ultraviolet light, a key facet of biopesticide research.

OIRED (http://www.oired.vt.edu/) at Virginia Tech manages two large global projects funded by USAID.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Virginia Tech. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Virginia Tech. "Scientists Discuss Improved Biopesticides For Locust Control In West Africa." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 February 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050211083131.htm>.
Virginia Tech. (2005, February 18). Scientists Discuss Improved Biopesticides For Locust Control In West Africa. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050211083131.htm
Virginia Tech. "Scientists Discuss Improved Biopesticides For Locust Control In West Africa." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/02/050211083131.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Earth Has Lost Half Its Vertebrate Wildlife Since 1970: WWF

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) A new study published by the World Wide Fund for Nature found that more than half of the world's wildlife population has declined since 1970. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dolphins Might Use Earth's Magnetic Field As A GPS

Dolphins Might Use Earth's Magnetic Field As A GPS

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) A study released Monday suggests dolphins might be able to sense the Earth's magnetic field and possibly use it as a means of navigation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How To Battle Stink Bug Season

How To Battle Stink Bug Season

Newsy (Sep. 30, 2014) Homeowners in 33 states grapple with stink bugs moving indoors at this time of year. Here are a few tips to avoid stink bug infestations. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
California University Designs Sustainable Winery

California University Designs Sustainable Winery

Reuters - US Online Video (Sep. 27, 2014) Amid California's worst drought in decades, scientists at UC Davis design a sustainable winery that includes a water recycling system. Vanessa Johnston reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins