Coconut crop damaging Beetles

The palms with the greatest importance in world RB-Damage_site_3commerce are the coconut and the African oil palm; both are prime sources of vegetable oil and fat. Few plants are as versatile as the coconut. The husk of the fruit is the source of coir, used for ropes and mats; the hard inner fruit layer is used as fuel and to make charcoal, cups, bottles, and trinkets; coconut “juice” or “water” is a tasty beverage; the flesh is eaten raw or dried to form copra, a source of oil and oil cake; the flesh may also be grated, mixed with water, and pressed to obtain coconut milk, used in food preparation and as a substitute for cow’s milk.

Coconut oil is one of nine internationally traded vegetable oils and ranks eighth in global production. Demand grew by 8 percent annually during 1993 to 2004. As of 2006, the U.S. annually imported 190 million pounds of coconut oil, whose worldwide trade reached $20 million. Due to the civil wars and crop failures the coconut oil prices hiked in EU, which has doubled during 2010-2011, nearing $2,000 per ton, according to the UK Grocer.

orycnasiadDynastinae or rhinoceros beetles are a subfamily of the scarab beetle family (Scarabaeidae). Other common names – some for particular groups of rhinoceros beetles – are for example Hercules beetles, unicorn beetles or horn beetles. Over 300 species of rhinoceros beetles are known. Many rhinoceros beetles are well known for their unique shapes and large sizes. The Dynastinae are among the largest of beetles, reaching more than 150 mm in length, but are completely harmless to humans because they cannot bite or sting. The rhinoceros beetle is native to Africa, China, Myanmar/India, and Southeast Asia and has been introduced to several Pacific Islands including Tonga, Samoa, Palau, Fiji, and Guam.

The rhinoceros beetle is considered a major pest of coconut palms and African oil palm. It can be also found in betel nut, banana, pineapple, and sugarcane. Adults damage living palms, either killing the tree due to direct damage, or opening up the tree to fatal damage from other insects or pathogens. On Pacific Islands with no natural enemies of this beetle, the damage can be extreme. In Palau, where the beetle first invaded in 1942, the coconut palm was eradicated entirely on some islands, with overall loss reaching 50%.

Coconut rhinoceros beetle adults damage palms by boring01tvtnk01_CPCRI_02_1741383g into the centre of the crown, where they injure the young, growing tissues and feed on the exuded sap. As they bore into the crown, they cut through the developing leaves. When the leaves grow out and unfold, the damage appears as V-shaped cuts in the fronds or holes through the midrib.

In Rjim Maatoug, Tunisia, rhinoceros beetle target date palm trees causing severe damage that can result in potential danger to human life due to collapse of the tree.

In the Sultanate of Oman, the infestation of rhinoceros beetle increased from 30 % in 1983 to 68% in 1986, Kinawy (1987).

imagesPrevention methods used to control damage caused by rhinoceros beetle are physical control, biological control, chemical control and cultural control. In physical control a simple trap is designed to trap rhinoceros beetle which consists of a piece of holed coconut trunk with a tin can placed right below it leaving no space between them. This method is time taking as well as inefficient.

In biological control the adult beetle is dipped in suspension of ground, infected grubs. They are then allowed to crawl about for 24 hours through sterilized sawdust mixed with the above suspension. And the infected grubs are then released in the ground so that they infect the other beetles present in ground. They will then disturb their breeding cycle. This method can have an adverse impact on non-target beneficial species too.

In chemical control many harmful insecticides are used to control rhinoceros beetle like ethyl 4-methyloctanoate, ethyl chrysanthemumate, gamma-BHC, Cypermethrin. These chemicals are highly toxic and can cause health as well as environment hazard.

This being an agricultural application, measures taken to protect food should not contain toxic products by any means as it will be more harmful and lead to many other problems. So the protection should be non-toxic, non-hazardous and eco-friendly.

C Tech Corporation caters to this problem with its niche product Termirepel™ which is non-toxic, non-hazardous and environmental friendly termite aversive which also repels 500 species of insects. Its life span is 25-40 years depending on the end application. It can be easily incorporated in agricultural tubing and hosing, drip irrigation, agricultural films, tarps, mulches. As it does not leach out from the application it does not contaminate ground water and soil.

Pests threatening India’s tea plantations!!

high-altitude-tea-plantation-at-top-station-near-munnarTea (Camellia sinensis, Family: Theaceae) is a perennial medicinal crop cultivated in more than 50 countries around the world. It is one of the most important agro-industrial crops sustaining the Indian economy. It is grown in a wide range of soil types found in tropical, sub-tropical and temperate regions of traditional tea producing countries such as India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Indonesia etc. Tea was known to the Chinese as early as 2737 BC. It was used as medicine in China in the 4th century AD and became a common beverage in China in the 7th century AD. The word ‘TEA’ is derived from T’e of the Amoy language, ‘CHA’ is derived from the Cantonese language. The Dutch traders introduced tea to Europe in 1610 and it became a popular drink in England in 1664.

India is the largest producer, consumer and exporterdownload (2) of Tea and Indian Tea production accounts for almost 28-30% of the world production. Almost 31% of our total production is exported fetching more than 700 cores   in foreign exchange which amounts to 7% of the total foreign exchange earnings of India. It is the most labor intensive crop and a million people are directly and another million people are indirectly employed by the tea industry. Tea gives income to Central and State Governments through taxes. As much as 33% of the value goes to the government. Tea helps in rural development, employment to women and backward classes. It conserves soil, helps in maintaining an ecological equilibrium, supplies firewood through pruning and shade lopping and is the largest consumed beverage.

images Each tea growing areas has its own distinctive pests and diseases though several of them might have been recorded from more than one region. Number of pests and diseases associated with tea plants in an area depends on the length of time for which it is cultivated in that area. More than one thousand species of arthropod pests and nearly 400 pathogens are known to attack tea all over the world, though only about 300 species of insects and mites and 58 pathogenic fungi are recorded from tea in India. Crop loss due to pest and diseases varies between 15 and 20%. Magnitude of the losses is bound to be higher today in view of the increased production and productivity besides the variations in climatic conditions.

Mites are serious pests of tea and they damage download (3)the green tissues of leaves, thereby reducing the photosynthetic efficiency resulting in yield reduction. Infestation leads to discoloration of leaves. Most of the species occupy the under surface of the leaves but a few prefer the upper surface also. Various types of mites attack the tea plantations like pink mites, yellow mites, purple mite, pale mite, red spider mite, etc. Apart from mites tea plantations are also susceptible to attack by other pests like tea aphids, tea mosquitoes, mealy bugs, thorps, etc.

The damage these pests cause to the tree plantations is sometimes irreversible. The major diseases of tea include Armillaria mellea root rot and Hypoxylon serpens wood rot diseases. However, there are also some other minor diseases in tea like stem canker or basal rot (Phomopsis theae) and grey blight (Pestalotia spp.) Mole rats as pest of tea can cause considerable damage leading to plant and yield losses.

Let us look at this news article:

Pests hamper production of tea in Valparai

TNN | Mar 25, 2013, 02.40 AM IST

COIMBATORE: Valparai is fast losing its status as the tea country of the south. More than a dozen pests which suck the sap from tender buds, leaves and stems, injecting their toxic saliva in the process, to cause brownish patches, curling of leaves and drying of shoots, have hampered productivity across all 56 tea plantations in Anamalai Hills. It almost seems like they have become resistant to pesticide. Severe pest attacks along with the successive poor monsoons have caused a production loss ranging between eight and thirteen percent .

Valaparai was developed by the British in the 19th century along with adjoining Nilgiris and Munnar as plantation towns. Now our focus is entirely on developing methods to fight the pest menace. There are more than a dozen pests we have identified, based on their colours that are harmful. Mites we have identified include Pink, Purple, Scarlet, Yellow, Pale, Red Spider, Brown, Mealey and Green Scale. Most of mites and tea bugs survive the pesticides used and fighting them now remains a huge challenge,” said Dr R Premkumar, deputy director of UPASI Tea Research Foundation in Valparai.

Scanty rains have also affected productivity in these estates. As per the met data available, the extent of total rainfall was minimal during 2012 in Valparai. The area, which received 3829.3 mm of rain fall during 2006, saw 4770.6 mm in 2007. It was 3352.3 mm in 2008 and 3804.8 mm in 2009. In 2010, the rain fall was 3468.8 mm and in 2011, it was 3679.8 mm. However, the area got only 2845.3 mm rain fall during 2012. The total number of rainy days in 2011 was 151 while was only 122 days in 2012.

As per UPASI (United Planters’ Association of South India) estimates, the decline is around five percent. However, many plantation owners have said the loss is between eight to thirteen percent. Even if we go by the five percent that Upasi came up with, it is a huge loss. Average productivity is 139 kg per hectare based on the productivity figures of 2011. Valparai has 10,000 hectres of tea plantations, making the total loss amount to 13,90,000 kg. With the average cost per kg of tea being Rs 120, the total revenue loss this year amounts to Rs 16.68 crore,” said a senior official of UPASI, who says this is only a conservative figure and the actual loss would be much higher.

Valparai is also facing labour problems with plantation workers moving to the plains largely because of the human-animal conflict in the region. According to the census of 2011, the population of Valparai municipality was 70,771. When compared to population during the 2001 census which was 95,107, the decrease is significant.

 Tea being one of the most economically important crops of India, proper steps needs to be taken to ensure that they are protected from the onslaught of pests. The above article suggests that off late the pests have resistant to the effect of pesticides. In such a scenario alternate methods need to be searched to control pest attack on the tea plantations.

Termirepel™ a product by C Tech Corporation can prove to be a worthy solution. Termirepel™ which by nature is a non-toxic, non-hazardous and eco-friendly termite aversive is also highly effective against a host of other insects and pests. It works by the mechanism of repellence, through which it will work at protecting the tea plantations from attack by various pests. This will in turn contain the damage upto a great extent. Termirepel™ is available in the form of a liquid concentrate that can be diluted in a favorable medium and sprayed on the trees as well as around them.



 

Neonicotinoids killing bees!

images (1)The most widely used class of pesticides in agriculture is the neonicotinoids. They are a relatively new class of insecticides that have come into effect as a substitute for previously widely used organophosphate pesticides. Neonicotinoids are the first new class of insecticides introduced in the last 50 years, and the neonicotinoid imidacloprid  is currently the most widely used insecticide in the world. Neonics are systemic pesticides. Neonicotinoids are registered in more than 120 countries. With a turnover of €1.5 billion, they represented 24% of the global market for insecticides in 2008. Neonicotinoids are even more important in the market for seed treatments. After the introduction of the first neonicotinoids in the 1990s, this market has grown from €155 million in 1990 to €957 million in 2008. Neonicotinoids made up 80% of all seed treatment sales in 2008. Unlike contact pesticides, which remain on the surface of the treated foliage, systemic are taken up by the plant and transported to all the tissues (leaves, flowers, roots and stems, as well as pollen and nectar).  Products containing neonics can be applied at the root (as seed coating or soil drench) or sprayed onto crop foliage.  The insecticide toxin remains active in the plant for many weeks, protecting the crop season-long. They have been recently linked to the widely condemned colony downloadcollapse disorder that is inflicting bee populations in horrendous amounts! Colony collapse disorder has wreaked havoc on U.S. beekeeping businesses (and the agriculture industry) since its devastating arrival in 2006. The veiled killer entered hives across Japan for the first time recently, affecting 25 percent of the national beekeeping association members. In January 2013, the European Food Safety Authority stated that neonicotinoids pose an unacceptably high risk to bees, and that the industry-sponsored science upon which regulatory agencies’ claims of safety have relied may be flawed. A study by Italian researchers, published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA on October 21, 2013, demonstrated that neonicotinoids disrupt the innate immune systems of bees, making them susceptible to viral infections to which the bees are normally resistant. Much furor has been created over the effects of these pesticides on the honey bee populations. Let us look at the following news article: Beekeepers blame bee deaths on controversial pesticide Debora Van Brenk, QMI Agency Feb 5, 2014 Last Updated: 10:02 AM ET LONDON, Ont. — Farmers have this one year to limit the effect a controversial pesticide is having on bee health, a leading agriculture researcher says. “The bottom line is, if we mess this up, we’re going to lose neonics (approval), I’m convinced of that,” said Art Schaafsma of the University of Guelph, who co-led a new Ontario field study of a group of pesticides called neonicotinoids. Beekeepers blame mass bee die-offs in the past two years on neonic coatings used on corn and soybean seeds. But some farm groups say there’s not enough information to prove cause and effect. It’s become a hot-button issue worldwide and the European Union has banned their use. Schaafsma said this will be a pivotal year here and farmers need to be part of the solution. “The eyes are on us. If the (bee mortality) numbers go up on this, like they did in 2013, the Pest Management Review Agency is going to be forced into a corner.” He challenged farmers at the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association to plant a bag of treated seed and a bag of untreated seed so researchers can expand on a study he and Agriculture Ministry entomologist Tracey Baute have just released. Ontario beekeepers, frustrated by what they say is an unabated threat to their livelihoods, will get the facetime they’ve requested with Premier Kathleen Wynne. “We’re looking at our earliest opportunity to meet with them,” likely this month, said Mark Cripps, spokesperson for Wynne, who is also agriculture minister. “We’re probably doing more than any province on the bee health file,” he said. Toxicology reports show almost all the bees that died in Ontario in 2012 and 2013 had some level of neonicotinoids in them, likely from foraging or from drinking contaminated water. But pesticide companies maintain that neonicotinoids have replaced previous, toxic pesticide treatments and don’t pose a threat to the environment. Most farmers ordered their seed months ago for the coming year and beekeepers worry it’s too late for most to order uncoated seed. imagesHoneybees are clearly exposed to neonicotinoids throughout the year and through multiple environmental routes.  At certain times, especially in spring, death often follows exposure, and even non-lethal exposures may disrupt bee learning and navigation systems. Neonicotinoids also appear to make bees especially vulnerable to certain parasites and may interact similarly with other stressors. The first download (1)reports of colony collapse disorder came in the mid-2000s from commercial beekeepers, which depending on region have experienced colony losses ranging from 30 to 90 percent. Also Forbes magazine reports that over the past five years, some 30 percent of bees in the United States have either disappeared or failed to survive to pollinate blossoms in the spring. That’s about 50% more than the rate expected. The problem is direr in some other countries. In Spain, recent data indicate a loss close to 80% of beehives. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says bees are responsible for pollinating about 25 percent of the American diet, from onions to apples, the New York Times reports. And when bees don’t pollinate crops, food prices soar. Thus these pesticides can have a domino effect on the national economy of every country. We need a product that can be used to protect crops and other agricultural produce from damaging insects and pests but at the same time it should have any adverse effect on the beneficial species like earthworms and honeybees. Termirepel™, a product of C Tech Corporation gives us the unique opportunity to provide for the next generation a pesticide free environment. Termirepel™ is a non-toxic and non-hazardous insect and pest aversive that can provide protection to crops without harming the environment as well as humans. It does not come in the class of pesticides. It is US EPA approved and FIFRA exempted. It works on the mechanism of repellence by which it works at preventing the target species from causing any damage to the crops but at the same time it is completely harmless to non-target species like honey bees and earthworms.

Deadly Army Ants

If we picture ants, we are most likely thinking of the most commonly seen ‘fire’ or ‘sugar’ ant. What we don’t realize is that there are many different species of the ant community. The most fierce and dangerous being the mighty Army Ants.

Army ants are some of the deadliest hunters of South America. Amassing in legions of over 200,000 ants, they become a massive predatory super-organism that fan out across the jungle floor leaving dismembered prey in their wake.

Army Ants vary in size but remain roughly between 8 and 12 millimeters in length. Their World-map-Eciton-burchellii-army-antcolor is typically a light brown, but has been reported to also resemble a red tint. This species of ant is incredibly intelligent. Army ants (Ecitoninae spp.) are carnivorous, nomadic and aggressive. They attack freely, eat without discrimination, migrate to locate food sources and maintain a complex social hierarchy. They are found primarily in the southern United States, Central America, South America, and even  Africa and parts of Asia.

By now, you will not be surprised to hear that these ants are, in fact, very huge, with the soldiers reaching a half inch in length. Like other ant species, the bodies of army ants consist of a head, abdomen and thorax. The thoraxes of army ants are located between the head and abdomen and are connected to the abdomen by joints known as nodes. Their abdomens are oval-shaped, and the stomach, stinger and large intestine are located within it. The head of the army ant has eyes, mouth and antennae. images (1)Their mouths consist of two jaws, or mandibles, which resemble scissors. However, adult army ants are unable to eat solid items and ingest only liquids. They use their antennae to smell, touch and communicate. The worrisome fact is they have massive, powerful, machete-like jaws half the length of the soldiers themselves. They’re notorious for dismantling any living thing in their path, regardless of size. They’re also completely blind, which for some reason makes the whole thing worse.

They’re called ‘Army’ ants because their entire colony, comprising up to and over one million insects, is a 100 percent mobile battalion. They don’t make permanent hives like other ants, no, they bivouac down in single locations just long enough for the queen to lay thousands of eggs, while the soldiers spread out in wide fans daily in search of food. Then the eggs hatch and they enter the dreaded swarm phase of their existence.

Army ants do not build a nest like most other ants. Instead, they build a living nest with their bodies, known as bivouac. Bivouacs tend to be found in tree trunks or in burrows dug by the ants. The members of the Army-ant-bivouacbivouac hold onto each other’s legs and so build a sort of ball, which may look unstructured to a layman’s eyes, but is actually a well-organized structure. The older female workers are located on the exterior; in the interior are the younger female workers. At the smallest disturbance, soldiers gather on the top surface of the bivouac, ready to defend the nest with powerful pincer and stingers. The interior of the nest is filled with numerous passages and contains many chambers with food, the queen, the larvae, and the eggs

These ants are mostly found living underground or up in trees. This is their safest way to avoid being stepped on, which is most commonly the death to many of these creatures. However, as many of these ants get trampled, it is highly unlikely for them to grow extinct. In just one colony there will be an average of 5,000 to 18,500 ants. A single queen can lay anywhere from 100,000 to 300,000 eggs. Most Army Ants will have a lifespan of 3 to 13 months.

The queen in an Army Ant colony is much like that of other ant species. They have one wingless queen whose life consists of mating and laying eggs. Contrary to popular belief that the only female in a colony is the queen, there are many blind female workers in the group. The rest consists of male soldiers known as Eciton burchelli. The soldiers are a whopping one to two inches long! They have a very important role in their group which consists of protecting the queen, killing and gathering food, and forming attacks on enemy colonies. Soldiers are born with very large mandibles which they use to kill, carry large objects, and to dig. The mandibles are so huge for their body size that they cannot feed themselves. The soldiers rely on the team effort of the worker ants to help feed them.

imagesThese ants are extremely fearsome species. If they come across prey, they attack en masse. Pretty much anything that they come across is ripped apart piece by tiny piece with their small but powerful jaws. This includes livestock. There are legendary, and quite possibly true, tales of the ants enveloping cows, moving on a short time later leaving nothing but the animal’s picked clean bones. Finally, their cooperative nature means they can overcome almost any obstacle. When faced with small bodies of water the ants can cling together with their claws to form a kind of living bridge, which the rest of the colony can then cross as it searches for more food. An army ant swarm is one of the most efficient eating machines in existence.

If you are ever in a known territory for Army Ants, please take extreme caution. These ants will attack any living creature they feel is a threat – and yes, that means you too! If you step on a nest, or fall asleep near a nest you are likely to become their next prey. The soldiers attack in extremely large groups, covering their meal completely as they begin to cut the flesh into tiny pieces. As savage creatures they leave the organs in place, causing whatever they kill to be torn apart while still alive – ouch. So be sure to watch your step or you may become their next feast!

These ants are capable of destroying everything in their path to gain access to food. Since they are mostly found underground, they pose a huge threat to our underground cables and pipes. In addition as mentioned above they are also capable of harming our livestock. Let’s take a look at the following article which describes in brief the study done on army ants;

Study: Army Ant’s Bloody Rampage Is in its Genes

July 10, By Lee Dye

 It looked like a red river, Sean Brady says as he recalls the spectacular sight of millions of army ants advancing through the dense Amazon jungle, devouring everything in their path.

“The whole forest was percolating with insects trying to get out of there,” he says, and even small reptiles, or other animals that couldn’t flee, were ripped to pieces by the ferocious ants.

It’s a very strange life style, and it sets army ants apart from all other ants. And that’s only part of the story.

Brady, an entomologist at Cornell University, has found that army ants have been acting that way for at least 100 million years. The “army ant syndrome,” essentially how they live their lives, hasn’t changed much in all that time.

Marching Genes Go Way Back

That evolutionary stability is quite remarkable, and it all began when India, Australia, Antarctica, Africa and South America formed a single super-continent called Gondwana. Evolutionary biologists had assumed that army ants developed their peculiar lifestyle in different areas of the globe after the continents separated, but Brady’s research shows that’s not the case.

“Once the original army ant evolved this syndrome, no army ant has ever lost it,” Brady says. Brady began his research as a doctoral candidate at the University of California, Davis, before moving on to Cornell. His findings were published in a recent issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

He reached his conclusions after studying the DNA from dozens of army ant species, and combined that with the fossil record to reconstruct the evolutionary history of army ants. Specifically, he found that all the species share some of the same genetic mutations, and thus came from the same ancestors who evolved back when the dinosaurs ruled the planet.

They don’t all look the same any more. Most have no eyes and thus cannot see, although some now have a single, large eye. Some have evolved other new physical features, and even some have new behavioral patterns. But all of them, whether in Africa, Asia or the Americas, are still ruled by the “army ant syndrome.”

“It’s a combination of three traits,” Brady says.

A Marching Syndrome

Most ant species send out scouts when they need food, but not army ants. The entire colony, numbering up to a million, sets off across the landscape, moving at about two to three feet per minute, Brady says, eating everything they catch.

And if you eat everything in sight, you’ve got to keep moving, so army ants are nomadic, literally eating themselves out of house and home and then moving on. No permanent nests for these guys.

And then there’s the queen, blind, wingless, but very good at what she does for the colony. She produces eggs, up to four million in a month. That reproductive cycle forces the colony to hang out at one location for awhile, and they form huge nests by literally hanging on to each other.

And then they move on again, devouring around 50,000 insects in a single day, according to Bill Gotwald, professor of biology at Utica College in New York and author of Army Ants: The Biology of Social Predation. Gotwald says if you imagine yourself being attacked by 50,000 wolves, you’ll have some idea of what it’s like being an insect caught in the path of army ants.

There are reports of army ants killing animals the size of a horse, but Brady says he’s not sure of the reliability of those reports. A calf tied to a tree maybe unable to get out of the way.

“They are ferocious enough that I’m sure they could kill a baby cow that was tied up,” Brady says.

Forest on Alert

He carried out his field research in several areas of Brazil, and he says his camp was visited many times by these regimented, hierarchal critters. Like most predators, they don’t target humans, he says, so he could stand alongside the marching colony without any danger, but rest assured he watched his step.

When the ants were on the move, he says, the whole forest paid attention. Insects chirped loudly, and he says he could hear small animals running wildly through the forest, trying to escape. Birds followed the marauders, picking up the scraps left behind.

As for the ants themselves, there’s not a lot of chatter going on. They move quietly along, a blood-red river that has not changed for 100 million years.

Knowing the capability of these army ants, it is of utmost importance that we employ effective methods to prevent these voracious creatures from harming us, our livestock and our applications especially wires, cables and pipes. The best way of preventing the army ants from causing damage is to use TERMIREPEL™. Termirepel™ is non-toxic, non-hazardous and environment friendly product of C TECH CORPORATION. It is a broad spectrum aversive which repels around 500 species of insects including aggressive species like Australian termites, army ants, etc. It works on the mechanism of repellence and does not harm target or non-target species.

Termirepel™ is available in solid masterbatch form which can be incorporated in cables and plastic pipes which are laid underground. It is also available in liquid and lacquer form and coated on the surface of the application to keep army ants away from them. They can also be coated in the area where the livestock to prevent fatal attack of these army ants.

 

 

Yellow Crazy Ants: A threat to all forms of life!

imagesYellow crazy ants fit the stereotype of a rapacious marauding invader. The yellow crazy ant (Anoplolepis gracilipes) is a species of ant introduced accidentally to northern Australia and Christmas island in the Indian Ocean, which has wreaked ecological damage in both locations. It is colloquially called “crazy” because of its erratic movements when disturbed, with its long legs and antennae making it one of the largest invasive ant species in the world. This is a “tramp ant”, a species that easily becomes established and dominant in a new habitat due to traits such as aggression toward other ant species, little aggression toward members of its own species, efficient recruitment and large colony size. It is on a list of “One Hundred of the World’s Worst Invasive Alien Species” formulated by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). It has invaded ecosystems from Hawaii to Seychelles, and formed super colonies on Christmas Island in the Indian Ocean.

The yellow crazy ants are widespread across theimages (3) tropics, and populations are especially dense in the Pacific region. The yellow crazy ant’s natural habitat is not known, but it has been speculated that the species originated in West Africa. It has been introduced into a wide range of tropical and subtropical environments including Caribbean islands, some Indian Ocean islands and some Pacific islands. The species has been known to occupy agricultural systems such as cinnamon, citrus, coffee and coconut plantations. Because the ant has generalized nesting habits, they are able to disperse via trucks, boats and other forms of human transport.

Yellow crazy ants demonstrate the power of numbers and the benefits of social cooperation. They are able to dominate large areas by forming super-colonies with multiple nests and multiple queens. The largest have up to 300 queens and extend over several hundred hectares. They spread by budding. A mated queen leaves her birth nest with some workers and sets up a new nest nearby. The boundary of a super-colony can advance approximately by 3 meter a day.

Also what is interesting here is that crazy ants have the ability to form multi-queened “super colonies”, where rather than fight each other, the offspring of different queens cooperate to form infestations. There can be several thousand ants per square metre of forest floor in these super colonies, but at any one time there are just as many ants foraging in the treetops.

images (1)The species is most infamous for causing the ecological “meltdown” of Christmas Island. On Christmas Island, yellow crazy ants have reached densities of more than 2,000 ants per square metre—the highest density of foraging ants ever recorded. The ants have had a dramatic impact on the ecosystem and are linked to population declines in some species of crab, bird and plant. Yellow crazy ant impacts are varied, depending on their density and on the invaded ecosystem.

They like to think of themselves as literally being the “queens of their castles”. Crazy ants are highly aggressive to other ants. Only two of 40 ants on Christmas Island are able to coexist with yellow crazy ants. In Hawaii, yellow crazy ants aggressively defend flowers from other nectar-eaters. Their large-scale removal of insects deprives other insect-eaters, such as lizards and birds, of food. Monopolization was noted at a site near Cairns.

Federal Government gives $2m to fight yellow crazy ants south of Cairns

  • Liam Parsons
  • The Cairns Post
  • November 11, 2013 6:14AM

RURAL MENACE: The Yellow Crazy ant, or Anoplolepsis Gracilipes.

THE war against one of the world’s most invasive pests has been given a boost after the Federal Government announced $2 million to fight yellow crazy ants south of Cairns.

The pests are about the size of green ants and spray a substance that irritates the skin and can cause temporary blindness to humans and animals.

Known for their frantic movements when disturbed, yellow crazy ants are entrenched at properties around Edmonton, south of Cairns.

But there are fears the infestation could spread to the neighboring Wet Tropics rainforests, causing severe damage to the World Heritage-listed region and local wildlife.

Wet Tropics Management Authority executive director Andrew Maclean said the ants would disturb fragile ecosystems while threatening young birds and even cassowaries.

“They’re quite aggressive,” he said.

“We would also be worried about the effect they would have on the invertebrate population, which plays an important part in the ecology.”

Mr. Maclean said recent surveys indicated the ants were confined to Edmonton, allowing the authorities to stamp them out before they spread.

“Once they’re established in a forest, the prospect of getting rid of them is pretty slim,” he said.

“It’s important you jump on these populations. We think it’s not too late to completely eradicate them.”

The money will go towards a five-year eradication program involving baits, research funding and public education and awareness programs.

Kennedy MP Bob Katter welcomed the funding and called for residents to identify and report the ants.

The funding, under the Federal Government’s Caring for Our Country grants program, comes 12 months after the State Government and Biosecurity Queensland stopped its eradication program.

Thus we can see that these pests are causing us a lot of grief and control measures are extremely costly.

 

In 2007, the CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization) claimed it had undertaken the world’s most successful eradication of the exotic invertebrate species, Yellow Crazy Ant, in the Northern Territory of Australia.

 

 However the need for control programs for these ants is a pressing one. We at C Tech Corporation can provide a solution to this grave problem. Termirepel™ a product by C Tech Corporation is an effective non-toxic, non-hazardous insect aversive. It works by the mechanism of repellence by which it aims at repelling the target species away from the end application. Termirepel™ can be incorporated in agricultural films during processing which can then be used to protect crops against the onslaught of these vicious ants. Termirepel™ can also be sprayed on the plants to protect them from these crazy ants. 

 

 

 

 

Rutherglen bugs damaging our crops!!!!

Ruther­glen bug (Nysius vin­i­tor) (RGB) is one of the insect species that feed on crops indownload spring in large num­bers, usu­ally in asso­ci­a­tion with storm activ­ity. Adult bugs are 3 – 4 mm long and narrow bodied. They are greyish brown with darker markings and have prominent black eyes. The wings are folded flat when the bug is at rest. Immature bugs are dark red and more swollen in shape than are adults. They are sap suckers and damage to susceptible plants is similar to that caused by aphids. Standing crops of rapeseed are not usually damaged by these bugs but they can cause problems by contaminating grain at harvest.

They attack on a wide range of crops and weeds including canola, Lucerne, sunflowers, Rutherglen-bug-nymph_KPlinseed and sorghum. They generally create problem in spring. During this time they will cause retardation of emerging seedlings and seedling death. Common symptoms include white blotches on tillers, which can appear similar to hail damage.

This small bug is found throughout Australia’s agricultural regions on a wide range of host plants and is a well known pest affecting a range of crops including fruits, vegetables, oilseeds and grains.

They are causing serious damage to potato crops in some places of New Wales.images In New Wales damage caused by rutherglen bug is 8, 60,456 Euro dollars.

Rutherglen bug is pri­mar­ily a seed-feeding species, and have the capac­ity to dam­age crops dur­ing grain fill­ing – but we know very lit­tle about how much dam­age in any crop other than sunflower. They can dam­age seedling crops purely by weight of num­bers feed­ing on seedlings.

Rutherglen bug damage can be control by removing host weeds by ploughing a deep furrow around the crop, preventing wingless bugs from migrating from weeds. Another method is chemical control in which conventional insecticides are sprayed on the plant to prevent them from infestation. These chemical are effective for a short duration as they are highly volatile and vaporize and form toxic fumes which are harmful for environment as well as to the human working in the field. These conventional insecticides deteriorate the quality of crops which further result in harmful disease to human.

These methods are not effective in preventing the rutherglen bug infestation. C-Tech Corporation’s product Termirepel™ is an excellent solution to control the rutherglen bug infestation. Termirepel™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous and environmental friendly insect aversive manufactured by C-Tech Corporation in India. It does not kill insects just keeps them away from the application. It is available in LDPE or EVA form and also in liquid form. It is compatible with different kind of polymers. It has a shelf life of 25-40 years depending on the application. It can be directly incorporated in tubing and hosing, pipes, mulches and agricultural film during polymer processing.

Borers attacking ash tress!!!!

The list of pests attacking our vegetation, crops, and trees is very long and is increasing day downloadAgrilus planipennis) is a green beetle native to Asia and Eastern Russia. Outside its native region, the emerald ash borer is an invasive species, and ash borer infestation is highly destructive to ash tress in its introduced range.

The adult beetle has a shiny emerald or coppery green-colored body. The eyes are large, bronze   or black, and kidney-shaped. The body is download (2)narrow, about 3 to 3.5 mm wide and about 7 to 8 mm long.  Adults can be seen on or near ash trees from early June to the end of August. The adults feed along the margins of ash leaves, they mate, and then the females deposit their eggs singly in bark crevices or under bark scales.

The egg is flat, oval-shaped, and small (0.6 by 1 mm). Freshly laid eggs are creamy yellow and older eggs are reddish brown. The eggs are hard to see because they are tiny and hidden in download (1)bark crevices or under bark scales. A fully grown larva is about 26 to 32 mm long, with a creamy white to light greenish body and small brown head. Larvae feed between the sapwood and bark along the entire length of the tree’s trunk and on branches more than 2 cm in diameter. Larvae can be found under the bark during the summer months, although some can be found all year round. It is the feeding by the larvae (there can be hundreds even thousands of larvae in a single tree) that cuts off the flow of nutrients, which eventually kills the tree.

From Asia and Russia, this pest has now spread in other parts of the world. This pest has become a major problem in countries like America. The Emerald Ash Borer was first images (7)discovered in America in June 2002 in Michigan. It is believed to have been brought to America unintentionally in ash wood which was used to stabilize crates during shipping. The beetle arrived in North America from Asia and was first noticed in 2002 in Detroit, Michigan, and in Windsor, Ontario. It was present in these areas for a number of years before being discovered, and has also been detected in southwestern Ontario, Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana. It is likely that this beetle will spread by natural means and through movement of ash products such as firewood, nursery stock, and logs. The beetle is a very serious pest and already has killed millions of trees. The earliest possible detection of this insect is essential to help reduce its spread and damage.

Emerald Ash Borers has killed millions of ash trees in Ontario and many parts of the United States. It poses a major economic and environmental threat to urban and forested areas. It images (4)was  confirmed in Ottawa in 2008 and its impacts can be clearly seen spreading from the St. Laurent area. Since the insect spends most of its lifecycle under the bark of trees, it can be easily moved with firewood or other tree materials such as nursery stock, logs, brush and larger wood chips. This insect is able to fly, but since its spread has been primarily along major highways and transport routes, it is clear that humans are the main vector of dispersal. Emerald Ash Borers can spread naturally by flying to new host trees upon emergence, but this dispersal is limited. The more threatening spread is that of long-distance dispersion, which can easily occur when a beetle is accidentally transported from an infested area to an uninfested area by the transportation of ash wood products by humans.

Emerald Ash Borers normally have a one-year life cycle, but some can take up to two years to mature. EAB lays eggs on tree bark and in bark crevices starting in late May.

In its larva form, which resembles a caterpillar, Emerald Ash Borer feeds just under the bark of ash trees. This feeding disrupts the tree’s circulation of water and nutrients. The presence of even a few insects in a tree can kill it.

Top branches of ash trees usually die off first. Trees can lose half its branches in a single year. Once larvae finish feeding under the bark, they mature into adult beetles that chew their way out of the tree.

images (8) It is estimated that there are 8 billion ash trees in the United States. Since the arrival of the Emerald Ash Borer, approximately 150-200 million ash trees have already died and this number is expected to rise.

Ash wood is greatly valued for its strength and elasticity and is often used for baseball bats, bows, tool handles, and other products that require durability, strength, and resilience. Green ash is planted widely as a landscape tree in urban areas and is a valuable native component of wetland areas. Ash foliage and seeds are fed upon by numerous animals as well as butterfly and moth caterpillars.

The sign and symptom of the damage by this ash borer is by the presence of larval gallery. images (5) When the larva feeds between the bark and sapwood, it makes an S-shaped, “zig-zag,” or serpentine gallery. When the young larva enters the wood to begin feeding, it may move up or down the tree bole or branch. You can tell which way it moved by looking at the width of the gallery: as the larva gets bigger so does the width of the gallery. Initially, the top of the crown begins to thin and partially die. Epicormic sprouting, or sprouting from the main stem of the tree, may occur. The presence of insects below the bark leads to increased images (6)woodpecker activity, which causes the tree to look like it is losing patches of bark. In severe cases, the bark of the tree may split in places where the larvae are feeding beneath. Direct evidence of the beetle can also be seen. Small, 1/8″ D-shaped exit holes, where adult beetles emerged from the tree, will occur wherever a beetle emerges. This may be above eye level, so it is important not to discount a symptomatic tree if no exit holes are observed. If the bark is peeled back, the galleries where larvae have fed may also be observed; they are meandering and are usually filled with frass (sawdust and insect excrement). Larvae may also be visible underneath the bark. The cream-colored larvae have bell-shaped segments and can be up to 1.25″ in length.

Within 2 years of observing symptoms, most of the crown of the tree will be dead. Complete tree death typically occurs within 5 years, but may take as few as 2-3 years.

The damage done to the ash trees by these emerald borers results in huge economic loss. Let’s take a look at the following article;

Aurora preparing for inevitable arrival of emerald ash borer

By Megan Mitchell, 02/12/2014

Aurora’s forestry division is creating a preemptive plan for the inevitable arrival of the emerald ash borer, an invasive insect that chews ash trees into lifeless skeletons.

“It’s a disaster in slow motion,” said John Wesolowski, urban forestry manager in Aurora. “If you don’t treat it, the tree will (become infested) and eventually die.”

Foresters began an inventory of all the public ash trees in Aurora after it was confirmed that the tiny bug was found embedded deep within the trunks of ash trees in Boulder in September.

Preliminary scouting missions among Aurora’s public ash trees have not turned up any evidence of the emerald ash borer yet, but Wesolowski said it’s only a matter of time.

“It’s still quite a ways away (from Aurora),” he said. “But it’s unavoidable.”

Since the discovery in Boulder, municipal and state foresters have devoted themselves to absorbing and disseminating information about how to detect and treat an infestation.

To date, the emerald ash borer has wreaked $10.7 billion in damages across 25 northeastern states. The bill includes treatment, removal and replacement of more than 17 million ash trees on developed land.

“The good thing about Colorado is that it’s not new,” Wesolowski said. “We’re getting information from other states that have gone through this already.”

He said his primary concern in Aurora is public education.

“We’re working on what kind of response plan we’re going to implement,” Wesolowski said. “Some people may not even know they have ash trees on their property.”

Ash trees make up 14 percent of Aurora’s tree population. There are about 6,000 on public land and more than 165,000 ash trees on residential land.

In October, about 20 employees from Aurora’s forestry division went to Boulder to learn how to find and identify a tree that has been devoured by a swarm of emerald ash borers.

Jacque Chomiak has been an arborist in Aurora for 23 years. In Boulder, she took pieces of infested ash trees and shaved the trunk back until she uncovered translucent larvae deep in the center.

“We thought the insect would be close to the surface and we wouldn’t need to go down too far,” Chomiak said. “But the bugs were pretty deep in because they were getting ready for the cold.”

She said ash trees riddled with emerald ash borers look like they have leaves growing around the trunk, but no leaves on the actual braches.

“It’s called suckering,” she said. “The trees will send out suckershoots in places where a normal branch wouldn’t be.”

Wesolowski and his team are currently researching the best detection and treatment options for the city. He said trees considered a priority to protect will need to be sprayed with pesticides once or twice a year for the rest of the tree’s life. Saplings will not be treated because the collective cost for a life of pesticides isn’t worth it.

The city of Aurora will also stop planting ash trees entirely, as will the rest of the state. Instead, an array of oaks, elms and linden trees will take their place.

“Diversity is key,” Wesolowski said. “It cuts down on the chances of a (tree) species being destroyed like this.”

Aurora is committed to a robust urban forestry program and plans to do everything it can to protect and maintain the health of its many trees, he said.

In April, the city will receive special designation as a Tree City USA. To qualify, municipalities must have a tree department, a tree care ordinance, a community forestry program and recognition of Arbor Day.
To tackle the problem various methods have been tried and tested without any success. The conventional toxic chemicals have become obsolete and are no longer effective in protecting the tress from the attack of these vile pests. Unlike these chemicals, C Tech Corporation’s product Termirepel™ is the best solution to deal with the problem of these pests. Termirepel™ is non-toxic, non-hazardous and environment friendly aversive product. It is a broad spectrum aversive which works against 500 species of insects including ash borer. Termirepel™ is available in liquid form which can be mixed with paints and applied on the tree trunk. It can also be sprayed in the area surrounding the tress to keep the ash borers at bay. The high point of Termirepel™ is that it does not kill the species but efficiently repels them.

Destructive Argentine Ants

The Argentine ant, Linepithema humile (formerly Iridomyrmex humilis), is a dark ant native to northern Argentine, Uruguay, Paraguay, and southern Brazil.  It is an Invasive species that has been established in many Mediterranean climate areas, including  many places like South Africa, New Zealand, Japan, Easter Island, Australia, Hawaii, Europe, and the United States. These ants will set up quarters in the ground, in cracks in concrete walls, in spaces between boards and timbers, even among belongings in human dwellings. In natural areas, they generally nest shallowly in loose leaf litter or beneath small stones, due to their poor ability to dig deeper nests. They secrete hydrocarbon (Formic acid).

skitched-20120316-101424The worker ants are about 3 long and can easily squeeze through cracks and holes no more than 1 millimeter in size. Queens are two to four times the length of workers. These ants will set up quarters in the ground, in cracks in concrete walls, in spaces between boards and timbers, even among belongings in human dwellings. In natural areas, they generally nest shallowly in loose leaf litter or beneath small stones, due to their poor ability to dig deeper nests. However, if a deeper nesting ant species abandons their nest, Argentine ant colonies will readily take over the space.

Argentine ants are now considered to be one of the world’s worst household pests. Argentine ants threaten native invertebrates wherever they invade. The ants are very aggressive and kill or drive away other insects. In South Africa and the USA, Argentine ants threaten endangered species that rely on native ants for food, pollination or seed dispersal. Argentine ants have also been reported to feed directly on fruit crops, and their sheer numbers can damage flowers and reduce fruit set. They are one of the worst pests of citrus in Australia, and a serious pest of viticulture, avocado and tomato crops. According to research, it was discovered that ants from three Argentine ant super colonies in America, Europe, and Japan.

In Europe, one vast colony of Argentine ants is thought to stretch for 6,000km (3,700miles) along the Mediterranean coast, while another in the US, known as the “Californian large”, extends over 900km (560miles) along the coast of California. A third huge colony exists on the west coast of Japan.

They are even known to make their way into microwaves, ants3refrigerators and screw-top jars. Argentine ants are now considered to be one of the world’s worst household pests. They are attracted by electrical currents and are known to have caused damage to air conditioners, heat pumps, telephone junction boxes, etc. When they become lodged or electrocuted between the contacts of relays; it damages the contacts and causes the equipment controlled by the relay to malfunction.

005_ants-tending-acp-nymphs_mark_hoddle_cisrMany steps are taken to control Argentine ants’ infestation some are using insecticides, poison baiting. Control in homes and yards include sanitation (e.g. removal of food scraps), closing points of entry to homes, and removing landscaping features that promote favorable microclimates – especially excess water sources. Poison baiting is not successful and pollutes the ground water and soil. Chemicals used to control argentine ant’s infestation are harmful and toxic, when exposed cause toxic fumes and violate environment.

We are in C Tech Corporation provide a non-toxic, non-hazardous and eco-friendly product Termirepel™. It is a non-toxic, non-hazardous and eco-friendly aversive for termite and other insects. It can repel 500 insect species. It is available in masterbatch as well as in liquid form. It is highly stable at polymer processing temperatures. Its life span is 25-40 years depending on the end application. It can be easily incorporated in agricultural tubing and hosing, drip irrigation, agricultural films, tarps, mulches. It does not leach out from the application and contaminate ground water and soil.

A solution against the repetitive menace of Queensland Fruit fly

01The Queensland fruit fly (Bactrocera tryoni) is a species of tephritid fruit fly native to Australia.There are over 250 species of fruit fly in the family Tephritidae which occur in Australia but only about ten are pests. Adult flies are about seven millimetres long and are reddish-brown in color, with distinct yellow marking. QFF (Queensland Fruit Fly) is different from the small dark brown drosophila flies that hang around ripe and decaying fruit. Drosophila flies are not agricultural pests but can be a nuisance where fruit and vegetables are stored. It is a widely acknowledged and feared pest in the agriculture and horticulture industry.

The fruit fly is native to eastern Queensland and north-eastern4 New South Wales.  The ready availability of suitable hosts and habitat in urban and horticultural production areas in Queensland, Northern Territory, New South Wales and Victoria in Australia has enabled the fly to expand its natural range. It attacks a wide range of host plants, lowering production and making fruit inedible. This can have severe consequences for local and international trade.

The fruit fly causes damage in the larval stage as well as the adult stage. The female fly has a retractable, needle-sharp egg-laying organ (ovipositor) at the tip of her abdomen. Using the ovipositor she digs a flask-shaped chamber about 3 mm deep in the outer layer of the fruit where up to 12 eggs are laid at a time.

3The fly lays eggs in maturing and ripe fruit on trees and sometimes in fallen fruit. The maggots (larvae) hatch and the fruit is destroyed by the feeding maggots and by associated fruit decay. The fly can attack a wide range of fruit, fruiting vegetables and native fruiting plants. Evidence of the fly activity is sometimes seen as puncture marks in the skin of fruit. The stings are where the female fruit fly has laid her eggs. Sting marks may appear as brown spots on persimmons, apples and pears or small holes that may become small raised lumps in citrus and avocado. They are most active in warm humid conditions and after rain. The flies might be seen walking on the undersides of leaves or on maturing fruit. They readily take flight if disturbed.

There have been innumerable fruit fly outbreaks in the recent history. An outbreak however small in intensity spells huge losses for the horticulture industry as thousands of fruits growers are affected. They attack a host of fruit trees like apple, apricot, blackberry, cashew, etc. Bananas are said to be attacked only when overripe, and other fruits, such as grapes, are attacked only in peak years.

In Napa County a hub of olive growers, the meddling fruit fly has caused severe damage as reported in a leading newspaper. An ardent horticulturist Chris Craiker, owner of Corlyone Olive Oyl in Browns Valley, said the infestation had hit his orchards hard in 2013, as he estimated a loss of 40 to 50 percent of his crop to the fruit fly infestation.

He said he usually grows about 1,000 to 1,500 pounds of olives, but had to discard the entire crop rather than sort the healthy fruit from the infected fruit.

Let us look at the following recent news article regarding the return of these devastating insects.

 

 

Fruit fly makes growers ‘nervous as hell’

By Mike Barrington – NORTHERN ADVOCATE

9:25 AM Friday Jan 24, 2014

 

A single male Fruit Fly found in the Hatea Drive area of Whangarei. Photo / Ron Burgin

The discovery of a male Queensland fruit fly in Whangarei has sparked a major biosecurity alert.

Up to 50 Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) staff was in the city and another 50 in Wellington were preparing yesterday to deal with the pest threatening New Zealand’s $4 billion horticulture industry.

The fly was found in the front yard of a home near the Whangarei Town Basin on Tuesday. It was collected from an insect trap MPI had placed there as part of its national fruit flies surveillance program involving 7400 traps around the country.

MPI staff yesterday put up signs banning people from taking whole fresh fruit and vegetables out of a 200m zone circling the place where the fly was found. Bins have been provided for residents to dump fruit and vegetables rather than disposing of them with other household rubbish.

Today MPI officials will begin putting about 200 pheromone traps into fruit trees in that zone and within a 1.5km radius of the discovery site extending up to the Regent, along Riverside Dr and into Parihaka.

An MPI mobile laboratory arrived in Whangarei yesterday for use analyzing fallen fruit and vegetables to be gathered from the two zones.

Queensland fruit fly is one of the most damaging fruit fly pests because it infests more than 100 species of fruit. Some countries will not import fruit and vegetables from sources where the fly is known to exist.

MPI deputy director general compliance and response Andrew Coleman said yesterday that New Zealand’s trading partners had been notified of the Whangarei find and measures were under way to find out if there is an infestation.

If no further evidence of fruit flies was found within a fortnight then overseas markets would accept the insect was alone, he said.

When the Northern Advocate asked whether the location of the fruit fly found in Whangarei indicated the insect had arrived in one of the many overseas yachts berthed at the Town Basin, Mr. Coleman said it may have done.

“But we may never know how it got here,” he said, explaining that the fruit fly life cycle involved a pupae development period in the ground.

The pheromone traps containing female fruit fly sex scent are expected to detect any males. If an infestation was found, ground spraying would be carried out to eradicate the invaders.

Minister of Primary Industries Nathan Guy and MPI chief executive officer Martyn Dunn were in Whangarei yesterday to see the fruit fly measures being imposed and for talks with Whangarei MP Phil Heatley, Mayor Sheryl Mai and top Northland Regional Council officials.

Mr. Heatley said later the minister had assured Whangarei people there would be no aerial spraying such as the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry carried out with the insecticide Foray 48B over parts of Auckland from January 2002 to May 2004 to eradicate another exotic pest, the painted apple moth.

Kerikeri Fruit growers’ Association chairman Rick Curtis said growers in his area were “nervous as hell”.

“They are watching and hoping the male fly found was alone,” he said.

Fruit fly facts:

• The Queensland fruit fly is a native of Australia where it is considered to be the country’s most serious insect pest of fruit and vegetable crops.

• Air and sea passengers are prohibited from bringing fresh fruit and vegetables into New Zealand.

• Fruit flies eat ripened fruit and vegetables. Eggs which female fruit flies lay on fruit hatch into larvae which find dark places where they grow six legs and wings before emerging as adults.

• Larvae of fruit flies develop in moist areas where organic material and standing water are present. The entire life cycle lasts 25 days or more depending on the environmental conditions and the availability of food.

indexThus these flies are notorious pests which affect the horticulture industry reigning in losses to the tune of billions of dollars. Let us see what has been done conventionally to deal with these pests. The fly has been the subject of extensive control regimes including a Fruit Fly Exclusion Zone where it is forbidden to take fruit, and post-harvest dipping of fruit in dimethoate and fenthion. Now dimethoate and fenthion are interesting chemicals. They are basically organophosphates. Dimethoate is a widely used organophosphate insecticide used to kill  insects on contact. Fenthion is an organothiophosphate insecticide, avicide and acaricide. Since both the above chemicals are extremely toxic and hazardous to the human life due to their mode of action targeting the central nervous system, their use was under review by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA), with dimethoate suspended from use.

In effect we still have outbreaks of fruit fly infestations with almost no means of controlling them. Termirepel™ a product by C Tech Corporation is a promising alternative solution. Termirepel™ is a non-toxic, non-hazardous insect and pest repellant. Primarily designed to be used as a termite aversive, it is highly effective against a host of other insects and pests. It works by the mechanism of repellence by which it ensures that the target insect or pest stays away from the application without resorting to killing it. Termirepel™ is available in liquid form which can be used in the form of a spray. Also the masterbatch form can be incorporated in agricultural films.

 

 

Silverfish Damage

Lepisma saccharina, frequently called silverfish or fishmoth is a small, wingless insect in the order Thysanura. Its common name derivessilverfish from the animal’s silvery light grey and blue colour, combined with the fish-like appearance of its movements, while the scientific name ‘L. saccharina’ indicates the silverfish’s diet of carbohydrates such as sugar or starches.

Silverfish are noctural insects typically 13–30 mm long. Their abdomens taper at the end, giving them a fish-like appearance. The newly hatched are whitish, but develop a greyish hue and metallic shine as they get older. They have three long cerci at the tips of their abdomens, one off the end of their body, one facing left, and one facing right. They also have two small compound eyes, despite other members of Thysanura being completely eyeless, such as the family Nicoletiidae. They are found in Africa, America, Europe, Australia, Asia, and other parts of the Pacific.

damageSilverfish consume matter that contains polysaccharides, such as starches and dextrin in adhesives. These include glue, book bindings, plaster, some paints, paper, photos, sugar, coffee, carpet, and clothing. It can also cause damage to tapestries. Other substances that may be eaten include cotton, linen, silk, synthetic fibers, dead insects, etc. They are considered a household pest, due to their consumption and destruction of property.

6a00d8341c464853ef01901ee8243a970b-580wiSilverfish eat the glue around book bindings which can damage our books. The silverfish bug is well known for the damage that it does in libraries and places that house papers. The silverfish damage the wall paper by boring holes through in it. Damage is also seen around the edges of the wall paper, this could be from the silverfish bug eating the glue which holds the wallpaper to the wall. Paper items can be a major food supply for the silverfish bug.

The Silverfish bug can damage clothing but only specific clothing made images_7up of cotton and linen. Proof of silverfish eating our clothing is usually yellow stains or small holes. They are harmless to humans and are not carriers of any known disease so far. They damage to wood and paper. Silverfish consume carbohydrates and sugars as their main diet and the cellulose in wood and paper serve as nutrition for them. If the wooden cabinets have powdered wood, that is a sign of silverfish infestation.

The silverfish bugs can also get into our house through cracks and unseen holes in roof. They are attracted by wet, damp conditions that may be caused by a leaky and damp roof. It is not unusual for silverfish to enter newly constructed homes arriving with insulation, lumber, and drywall. Silverfish will eat insulation and drywall and destroy them.

Many prevention methods used to control silverfish infestation are-

  • Physical control can be easily achieved by cleaning, vacuuming, steam cleaning, altering the temperature to make the room hotter or colder, dehumidifying and trapping. Physical control has to be done in a particular interval of time.
  • A glue board may also be used to trap silverfish but it’s not very effective in preventing silverfish infestation.
  • Fumigation- which may kill silverfish for that particular area but it will also damage the area because the chemicals used are harmful to the wooden structure and are poisonous to human being too.
  • Ultrasonic devices- these devices provide an ultrasonic sound which repel the insects from the application area but the sound emitted by this device irritate human too.

These methods are not effective in preventing silverfish infestation. We at C Tech Corporation provide you Termirepel to control silverfish infestation. Termirepelis an excellent solution for silverfish infestation. Termirepel is a non-toxic, non-hazardous and environmental friendly insect aversive manufactured by C-Tech Corporation in India. It does not kill insects just keeps them away from the application. It is available in LDPE or EVA forms and also in liquid form. It is compatible with different kind of polymers. It has a shelf life of 25-40 years depending on the application. It can also be applied on the wooden application to prevent silverfish infestation.