A new Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) research greenhouse will open next week. Citrus leaders say the facility will aid natural ACP control efforts.
Cal Poly Pomona Opens Research and Insect Rearing Facility to Help Control the Spread of Huanglongbing
Citrus Industry, University Leaders to Hold Ribbon Cutting Event
The Asian citrus psyllid and the deadly citrus plant disease it can carry, Huanglongbing (HLB), is the biggest threat the California citrus industry has ever faced. To advance efforts to limit the spread of psyllid populations through biological control, Cal Poly Pomona, the Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Program and California Citrus Mutual will unveil a new 5,040-square-foot research greenhouse on Monday, July 25.
The facility will support the research and rearing of the Tamarixia radiata wasp, a natural parasite of the Asian citrus psyllid. While biological control is not a silver bullet, it helps lower populations of the Asian citrus psyllid, thus limiting the opportunities for HLB to spread. Currently, Tamarixia are released in urban areas of Southern California – where the psyllid is widely established and eradication is no longer possible – as a part of the state’s biological control program.
Currently, the largest Tamarixia rearing facility in California supports the release of approximately 2 million wasps a year. As the psyllid becomes more established in new regions across the state, the ability to research and rear more Tamarixia will be critical. The greenhouse was planned in collaboration with Citrus Research Board and constructed through a $400,000 grant from the Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Program.
Monday, July 25, at 10 a.m.
Presentations will begin at 10:15 a.m. followed by facility tours at 10:45 a.m. that will showcase the University’s techniques in hydroponic growing systems and rearing insects.
Cal Poly Pomona – 3801 West Temple Avenue, Pomona, CA 91768
Park in Lot E2 (in front of the Interim Design Center, Building 89)
One-on-one interviews will be available after the facility tour with representatives from Cal Poly Pomona, Citrus Pest & Disease Prevention Program and California Citrus Mutual.
To attend the event, please contact Jessica Northrup.
Nuffer, Smith, Tucker