Red palm weevil biological control research

Red palm weevil biological control research

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Credit: MARCO ANSALONI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

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Caption: Red palm weevil biological control research. Researcher holding a petri dish containing a red palm weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus) that has been infected and killed by the parasitic Beauveria bassiana fungus. The red palm weevil is a major pest of palm plantations. The larvae can excavate metre-long holes in the trunks of palm trees, thereby weakening and eventually killing the host plant. This fungus is being studied as a means of controlling infestation in palm trees (family Arecaceae). It infects many arthropods causing white muscardine disease, and is commonly used as a biological insecticide to control a number of pests such as termites, thrips, whiteflies, aphids and different beetles. Photographed in Alicante, Comunidad Valenciana, Spain.

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