Midwest Well Represented as New IOBC Officers are Elected
The Nearctic Region (North America) of the International Organization for Biological
Control recently held election for officers for 1997-98, and the upper Midwest is well
represented. Larry Charlet, a USDA/ARS entomologist affiliated with North Dakota State
University is President-elect. Bob O'Neil, Department of Entomology, Purdue University, will be
Vice President. And Rob Wiedenmann, Center for Economic Entomology of the Illinois Natural
History Survey, will be Secretary-Treasurer. In addition, the new Corresponding Secretary and
editor of the Section's Newsletter is Lindsay Milbrath of North Dakota State. Congratulations to
all the newly-elected officers.
IOBC is a world-wide group of people interested in biological control. The membership
is composed primarily of scientists who conduct research to implement biological control, but
other members include biological control businesses and some practitioners.
In the previous two issues of MBCN, I presented brief summaries of presentations on biological
control of insects and plant diseases from the International Organization for Biological Control's
(IOBC) international conference, "Technology Transfer in Biological Control: From Research to
Practice." This final article on the conference contains summaries of weed biological control.
IOBC Conference Contributions
A novel, broad-host pathogen and delivery system for controlling weeds - S. Yang, USDA,
Instead of the usual host specific plant pathogens, non- or low-virulent pathogens could
be applied in special oil-based carriers that allow them to infect and kill many weed
Native pathogens and biological control: field application of Rhizoctonia solani and
Fusarium spp. on Euphorbia esula - A. Caesar, USDA, Bozeman, MT
Leafy spurge infests millions of acres of rangeland in the Northern Plains. Several strains
of two native soil-borne pathogens were isolated from diseased or dying plants and
applied as granular formulations in test plots with or without spurge-feeding insects.
Significant reductions in weed stand density were measured in some experiments
conducted in Montana.
Development of Ascochyta caulina as a mycoherbicide for control of Chenopodium album -
J. Allen, Ciba, Switzerland
Although this pathogenic fungus selectively infects lamb's-quarters, its potential as a
mycoherbicide is limited by the need for high relative humidity for successful foliar
infection. Attempts to reduce moisture requirements by adding humectants, stickers and
an oil emulsion did not work.
Biological control agents of musk thistle, Carduus nutans L. (Asteraceaea) in the United
States - G. Campobasso, USDA, Rome, Italy
In the U.S. musk thistle is successfully controlled in many mid-Atlantic and mid-western
states by insects collected in Italy by the USDA's European Biological Control Lab. Two
weevils are mainly responsible, but a rust fungus (Puccinia cardorum) had also been
released and established in several mid-Atlantic states. A leaf feeding beetle has been
tested and will be submitted for approval for its release in the U.S. next year.
- Susan Mahr, University of Wisconsin - Madison
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