A new fungal genus and species Ochraceocephala foeniculi causes fennel yield losses of about 20-30% for three different cultivars. It damages the crops with necrotic lesions on the crown, root and stem. International research group makes the first step in handling the new fennel disease by publishing their paper in the open-access journal Mycokeys.
Exeter researchers have discovered a novel chemistry to protect our crops from fungal disease.
Crop yields have increased substantially over the past decades, occurring alongside the increasing use of nitrogen fertilizer. While nitrogen fertilizer benefits crop growth, it has negative effects on the environment and climate, as it requires a great amount of energy to produce. Many scientists are seeking ways to develop more sustainable practices that maintain high crop yields with reduced inputs.
As the collective body of microbiome data for diverse crops grows, the lack of consistency in recording data makes it harder for the data to be utilized across research projects. In a recent article published in Phytobiomes Journal, Dundore-Arias and others in his field discuss the need for agriculture-specific metadata standards for microbiome research.
Pollinator issues have emerged as critical within public awareness. As a result, many consumers and activists have advocated for the removal of commonly used pesticides. As various media and activist groups provide information (positive, neutral, and negative) about the impact of pesticides on pollinators, no information exists regarding how consumer behavior is altered based on such information. The authors determined how both information source and information type have an impact on a consumer's decision to purchase pollinator-friendly plants in the future.
With 3,000 known species and thousands more left to describe, the wasps of the subfamily Microgastrinae are the single most important group of parasitoids attacking the larvae of butterflies and moths, many of which are economically important pests. Consequently, these wasps have a significant impact on both the world's economy and biodiversity. All currently available information about the group is now brought together in a monograph published in the open-access, peer-reviewed journal ZooKeys.
Many millions of homeowners use feeders to attract birds. But a two-year study featured in the journal Invasive Plant Science and Management suggests there may be one unintended consequence to this popular hobby. Bird feed mixtures may be helping to spread troublesome weeds that threaten agricultural crops.
In the fight to protect native ecosystems from invasive insects and related arthropod species, promising new tools are arising from rapid advances on a pair of research fronts: genetic analysis and geospatial technology. Both cutting-edge technologies and practical implications for improved invasive-species management are showcased in a pair of new special collections in the Annals of the Entomological Society of America, published in a partnership between ESA and the National Invasive Species Council.
Experts have stressed an urgent need to find alternatives to wormers and anti-ectoparasitic products used widely on cattle, following the findings of a study just published in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.
Seed-coated pesticides -- such as neonicotinoids, many of which are highly toxic to both pest and beneficial insects -- are increasingly used in the major field crops, but are underreported, in part, because farmers often do not know what pesticides are on their seeds, according to an international team of researchers. The lack of data may complicate efforts to evaluate the value of different pest management strategies, while also protecting human health and the environment.