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Locust pest control: fungal spores grown

Locust pest control: fungal spores grown

E779/0070

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Credit

JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JAMES KING-HOLMES / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Locust pest control. Gloved hands hold rice on which fungal spores of Metarhizium anisopliae has been grown, during research on the first fungal pesticide to control desert locust swarms. This research is conducted at the International Insti- tute of Biological Control in Berkshire, England, part of the LUBILOSA project. The project is developing sprays of M. anisopliae, a fungus that infects insects and is native to Africa. In the laboratory fungal spores are grown on rice, mixed in oil droplets, to later be spread with crop- spraying equipment. The fungus infects the desert locust killing it in 2-3 weeks. Locust swarms devastate crops around the world.

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