New pest field guide for plantation industry January 24, 2013 Murdoch University researchers have compiled a new field guide for the hardwood plantation industry which features more than 400 photographs of pests, diseases and nutrient deficiencies. Mamoru Matsuki and Francisco Tovar from the School of Veterinary and Life Sciences have summarised ecological information gathered over more than a decade for the guide. The book, which is entitled Field Guide for Eucalyptus globulus Plantations in Western Australia and the Green Triangle, was produced in conjunction with industry workers who identified the need for a guide to aid them while they are in the field. Designed to be practical, the book has been printed on waterproof paper, features colour coded sections for rapid navigation and uses double page spreads to illustrate similar or related pests or diseases. “While the guide is primarily aimed at foresters working in the bluegum industry in mainland Australia, we hope it will also prove useful to farmers, land owners and environmental groups in other regions,” said Mr Tovar. “While working with the Industry Pest Management Group to put the guide together, we had non experts in mind and as such the publication is very picture based. “Many of the species we highlight are new or previously undescribed such as Heteronyx sp. Nov 8, a beetle which feeds on the leaves of seedlings and older trees. Heteronyx beetles are a diverse group of insects, usually locally endemic, that under the right conditions such as after summer rains and during warm nights, can form large swarms with hundreds of individuals able to completely defoliate seedlings.” Mr Tovar added that more common pest species like Gonipterus platensis are also described in the guide. “This is the most important pest species currently affecting plantations in WA. In large numbers it can defoliate the top third of tree crowns leading to reduced height growth and loss of leading stems.” The guide is the latest tool Murdoch researchers have provided to the industry to better record tree health in plantations. “Previously we released a smartphone ‘app’ that allows foresters to record pest and diseases they observe in the field,” said Mr Tovar. “We hope the guide will further help the industry to correctly identify and take action against such pest outbreaks before the insects can do too much damage.” Print This Post Media contact: Jo Manning Tel: (08) 9360 2474 | Mobile: 0408 201 309 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Categories: General, Research, Animal and plant studies, environment and bioinformatics, School of Veterinary and Life Sciences Research Tags: School of Veterinary and Life Sciences, eucalyptus globulus, francisco tovar, hardwood plantation industry australia, industry pest management group, mamoru matsuki, wa bluegum industry Leave a comment Name (required) Mail (will not be published) (required) Website You can use these tags : <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong> We read every comment and will make every effort to approve each new comment within one working day. To ensure speedy posting, please keep your comments relevant to the topic of discussion, free of inappropriate language and in-line with the editorial integrity of this newsroom. If not, your comments may not be published. Thanks for commenting!