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Update on Gum Leaf Skeletoniser Research

Scion is the leading provider of forest-related knowledge in New Zealand
Formerly known as the Forest Research Institute, Scion has been a leader in research relating to forest health for over 50 years. The Rotorua-based Crown Research Institute continues to provide science that will protect all forests from damage caused by insect pests, pathogens and weeds. The information presented below arises from these research activities.

From Forest Health News 147, December 2004.

The Environmental Risk Management Authority of New Zealand (ERMA) recently approved an application to import four insect parasitoids from Australia for testing as biological control agents against the gum leaf skeletoniser (Uraba lugens ; FHNews 136:1).

The adult parasitoid wasps lay their eggs in the U. lugens larvae, which are eventually eaten and killed by the parasitoid larvae. The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) is funding the testing of the parasitoids under strict quarantine to gauge their likely efficacy against U. lugens , and to identify any potentially adverse effects on New Zealand fauna, such as native moths. The first shipment of parasitoid pupae is expected to arrive at Forest Research in December 2005. In order to assess the likely distribution of U. lugens in New Zealand, a pheromone trap survey will be conducted in western Tasmania from February to April 2005. This will determine the coldest and wettest places that U.lugens can persist, and assist in the verification of a climate model (CLIMEX) being used to map those areas of New Zealand
that are likely to be invaded by this pest (FHNews 143: 2).

Darren Kriticos, Forest Research


This information is intended for general interest only. It is not intended to be a substitute for specific specialist advice on any matter and should not be relied on for that purpose. Scion will not be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special, consequential or exemplary damages, loss of profits, or any other intangible losses that result from using the information provided on this site.
(Scion is the trading name of the New Zealand Forest Research Institute Limited.)


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