Sirex biocontrol: cryptic nematode field strain prompts urgent review of program
The sirex woodwasp (Sirex noctilio) is an invasive species in many parts of the world, including Australia, where it has become a significant economic pest of pine trees. Pinus radiata is Australia’s most valuable softwood resource, but it is extremely susceptible to mortality from sirex woodwasp. This project will review available data for inoculation history, within and between regions, to analyse patterns associated with sirex parasitism rates and populations, linked to nematode strains. Interactions between sirex’s commercial biocontrol nematode (Kamona) and a newly identified field strain in Australia will be evaluated. In addition, current sirex management practices will be reviewed.
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