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Pink Hibiscus Mealybug Conference Call - 11 AM-1:00 PM, December 3, 2004 Conference call organizer: Robert Nowierski, USDA-CSREES, Washington, DC Participants: Dan Barchert, USDA-APHIS-PPQ, Center for Plant Health Science and Technology (CPHST), Raleigh, NC Deborah Bivens, USDA-APHIS-PPQ, Eastern Regional Office, Raleigh, NC Luis Canas, Assistant Professor, Department of Entomology, Ohio State University, Wooster, OH Dan Fieselmann, CPHST, USDA-APHIS-PPQ, Raleigh, NC Ray Hammerschmidt, Professor and Chairperson, Department of Plant Pathology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI Bill Kauffman, USDA-APHIS-PPQ, Western Regional Office, Fort Collins, CO Dennis Kopp, National Program Leader for Entomology, USDA-CSREES, Washington, DC Dale Meyerdirk, Pest Detection and Management Programs, (PDMP), USDA-APHIS-PPQ, Riverdale, MD Robert Nowierski, National Program Leader for Bio-Based Pest Management, USDA-CSREES, Washington, DC Larry Olsen, Co-Director, North Central Integrated Pest Management Center, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI Lance Osborne, Professor, University of Florida, Mid-Florida Research and Education Center, Apopka, FL Bill Roltsch, California Department of Food and Agriculture, Sacramento, CA Amy Roda, CPHST, USDA-APHIS-PPQ, South Miami, FL Cliff Sadof, Professor, Department of Entomology, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN Ron Stinner, Associate Director (Information Technology), Southern Region IPM Center, NCSU, Raleigh, NC Steve Toth, Associate Director (Information Technology), Southern Region IPM Center, NCSU, Raleigh, NC Jim VanKirk, Director, Southern Region IPM Center, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC Welcome, introductory remarks, and objectives of conference call from Nowierski. Objectives: Discuss some short-term and long-term strategies to manage the pink hibiscus mealybug (PHM) to hopefully help avoid a national disaster Problem: 900,000 hibiscus plants shipped from a plant nursery in Homestead, FL from January through July 2004 to various stores such as Wal-mart, Kmart, Home Depot, Lowe’s, etc. in 36 states in the U.S. A number of these plants were infested with PHM APHIS-PPQ is in the process of mapping the distribution of these Hibiscus plants to all the retail outlets throughout the U.S.; this information will be helpful in future planning According to the climate-matching models used, 17 states in the U.S. are climatically suitable for establishment of PHM (11 of these received hibiscus plant shipments from Homestead) If infested plants were sent to retailers for propagation in the greenhouse PHM could persist in temperate climatic states as well PHM has been recorded on 300 different host plants including citrus, ornamentals, and vegetables; new host plant records are still being found PHM was found on hibiscus plants at garden centers in KS, LA, and NC; the hibiscus plants were destroyed Potential Solution: Biological control, chemical control (neonicotinoids, etc.), sanitation, and other methods Nurseries have a zero tolerance for PHM because of interstate and export trade, hence chemical control will have to be emphasized in these settings Two effective encyrtid parasitoids have been used by Meyerdirk and others to successfully control PHM in Grenada, other Caribbean countries, the Bahamas, Belize, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, California, and Florida These parasitoids will be mass-reared at insectaries in Puerto Rico, Florida, and California and will be made available to cooperators by APHIS-PPQ for release against PHM in spring and summer 2005; comment was made that parasite releases could take place in greenhouses over the winter if found early, to give the biocontrol practitioners a jump start in implementing biocontrol efforts against the PHM The question of hyperparasitoids was raised; Over the long-term, hyperparasitoid attack of these encyrtids have not reduced their over-all effectiveness; Meyerdirk has documented 95-99% reductions in PHM levels following parasitoid introductions at numerous release sites APHIS-PPQ has produced a 120 page manual for implementing a biological control program against PHM (the manual can be obtained electronically from Dale Meyerdirk) Visual monitoring has typically been used to detect PHM; a sex pheromone trap has been developed that will enhance PHM detection in the future Judy Brown, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, has used molecular genetic approaches to identify PHM; conceivably this could be used by the NPDN’s to identify PHM in the future The importance of having long-term sites for monitoring the impact of natural enemies and other management strategies was discussed Potential Game Plan: Successful management of PHM will require monitoring, detection, correct identification, and the implementation of management strategies (including natural enemy releases/monitoring of natural enemy impact, sanitation, chemical control, and other approaches) Nowierski discussed other educational training efforts that were used for sudden oak death (SOD) and soybean rust that could be used as models (this information was generously provided by Sue Ratcliffe, IPM Facilitator with the North Central IPM Center, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL) o For SOD, following a series of conference calls and training sessions a teleconference session took place which reached 731 people o A team of experts put together Power Point presentations and the accompanying audio, which reached all 731 people via the web; this was a very cost-effective approach, which compared to a workshop, required considerably less travel (as long as one had access to a computer, travel was unnecessary) o Master Gardener Coordinators, point contacts for each state, State Plant Regulatory Officers, university and federal agency people, IPM Centers, National Plant Diagnostic Networks, and others were involved in this effort o The teleconferencing session was followed by some state-specific teleconferencing sessions, training CD’s and pest alert pamphlets o A similar approach was used to provide early detection and rapid response training which could be used against soybean rust Ray Hammerschmidt (also the Director of the North Central National Plant Diagnostic Network) mentioned that training for PHM could be added to first detector and state diagnostic lab training that will still continue for SOD and soybean rust Ray also mentioned that the National Plant Diagnostic Networks (NPDN), located in regions with relatively little SOD activity, practiced load sharing for SOD samples to relieve diagnostic laboratory pressure from other NPDN’s; a similar approach could be used for PHM Next Steps: PHM Steering Committee will be formed IPM Centers and NPDN’s in regions of U.S. potentially at greatest risk to PHM will participate on the PHM Steering Committee and will communicate appropriate information to other IPM Centers and NPDN’s Monthly conference calls will be held Teleconferencing Training Session will be planned for May 2005 Short-term and long-term funding will be pursued A proposal will be developed for CSREES' Critical and Emerging Pests and Diseases Program to help fund the teleconferencing session for PHM, PHM training workshops*, educational CD’s, pest alert pamphlets, etc. The RFA requires that a pre-proposal be submitted (Nowierski, Lance Osborne, and Meyerdirk will take lead in developing a pre- proposal; Cliff Sadof, Luis Canas, Amy Roda**, Jim VanKirk, Sue Ratcliffe, Ray Hammerschmidt, Gail Wisler [Director of Southern Region NPDN/Professor and Head, Department of Plant Pathology, University of Florida/IFAS, Gainesville, FL] and additional administrators from the IPM Centers and NPDN’s will also provide input) *Suggested by Lance Osborne and Amanda Hodges (Assistant in Extension Scientist, University of Florida, Entomology and Nematology Department, Gainesville, FL) subsequent to the PHM conference call. **Amy Roda will be coordinating parasitoid releases against PHM. Hence, her name was added to the proposal participant list subsequent to the PHM conference call.
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