Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Identifying Invasive Australian Pine Trees In Florida

Date:
November 22, 2008
Source:
USDA/Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
Invasive Australian pines that crowd out native plants in Florida present a particular conundrum. In the Sunshine State, it can be very difficult to tell the look-alike Casuarina species and subspecies from one another.

Researchers are working on DNA fingerprints so they can accurately identify lookalike species and subspecies of invasive Australian pines.
Credit: Photo courtesy of Amy Ferriter, South Florida Water Management District, Bugwood.org

Invasive Australian pines that crowd out native plants in Florida present a particular conundrum. In the Sunshine State, it can be very difficult to tell the look-alike Casuarina species and subspecies from one another.

Correct identification is important to the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists who want to import Casuarina-quelling insects from the invasive tree's Australian homeland to stop the plants' uncontrolled advance in Florida. But until they know who’s who among the confusing Casuarina trees, researchers won’t be able to precisely match the helpful insects with the exact Casuarina with which they evolved in Australia. Perfect matches may be critical to the insects’ success in the United States.

To solve the identity puzzle, ARS botanist and research leader John Gaskin is analyzing DNA taken from Casuarina trees growing in Australia, where their identification is certain. He’s comparing that to DNA from the Casuarina trees currently running amok in south Florida.

Technicians Kim Mann and Jeannie Lassey, who work with Gaskin in the ARS Pest Management Research Unit in Sidney, Mont., extract DNA from leaves that Gaskin collected in 2006 from Casuarina trees growing along Australia’s eastern coast.

They’re also working with Casuarina specimens gathered elsewhere in Australia by four co-investigators: Matthew Purcell and Bradley Brown of the ARS Australian Biological Control Laboratory in Indooroopilly, Australia; Gary Taylor of the University of Adelaide in Australia, and Greg Wheeler of the ARS Invasive Plant Research Laboratory in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

The study is the first to use DNA to definitively identify Casuarina trees in Florida. Gaskin expects to have final results sometime this year.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA/Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Identifying Invasive Australian Pine Trees In Florida." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081031213814.htm>.
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. (2008, November 22). Identifying Invasive Australian Pine Trees In Florida. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081031213814.htm
USDA/Agricultural Research Service. "Identifying Invasive Australian Pine Trees In Florida." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081031213814.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve

Visitors Feel Part of the Pack at Wolf Preserve

AP (July 31, 2014) Seacrest Wolf Preserve on the northern Florida panhandle allows more than 10,000 visitors each year to get up close and personal with Arctic and British Columbian Wolves. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers

Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers

AP (July 31, 2014) With Florida's panther population rebounding, some ranchers complain the protected predators are once again killing their calves. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

AP (July 30, 2014) Thousands of people are trekking to a Bavarian farmer's field to check out a mysterious set of crop circles. (July 30) Video provided by AP
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:
from the past week

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