On Sept 28, Dr. Beth Grafton-Cardwell led an all-day training on the nitty gritty details of the life cycle of California red scale and its parasites. She also spent time discussing the current problems with managing scale in orchards and how the high temperatures we have had the past few years plus increased broad spectrum insecticide use for pests of export significance (such as Fuller rose beetle), create a 'perfect storm' of red scale that is very difficult to manage. More than 30 PCAs and industry reps attended the class and spent the day working with microscopes.
The Freshmen class of Ag Academy students from Woodlake High School came to Lindcove REC on September 6 and participated in a research project on citricola scale taught by Dr. Beth Grafton-Cardwell. Students learned about experimental design, studied the life cycle of the insect using microscopes, collected leaves from a research plot, evaluated the survival of the scales exposed to different treatments, and plotted their data. This was a great opportunity for students to see how science applies to agriculture and to talk about careers in agricultural science. Special thanks to Woodlake HS teacher Jason Ferreira who requested the event and to teaching assistants Joshua Reger, Joel Leonard and Stephanie Doria.
Dr. Andrea Sequiera from Wellesley College in Massachusetts is conducting a molecular analysis of Fuller rose beetle in the Unites States. The Fuller rose beetle originates from Argentina, and she is determining if the populations in the US came from different introductions. She visited Lindcove to collect Fuller rose beetles from citrus to see if feeding on different cultivars affects their gene expression.
- Author: Elizabeth J Fichtner
Since 2014, the new Lindcove Research and Extension Center pathology laboratory has provided the infrastructure for six College of the Sequoias (COS) undergraduate interns enrolled in the SURGE (Science Undergraduate Research Group Experience) program. In 2017, Lizbeth Garcia and Hyo Jin Kim, completed a research project at LREC under the combined mentorship of Elizabeth Fichtner, PhD., UCCE Farm Advisor, and Alfonso Lago, DVM, PhD, President, DairyExperts.
Garcia and Kim's research project involved field and laboratory activities focused on a disease affecting a portion of Tulare County's 65,000+ acre pistachio industry. Narges Mahvelati, Jr. Specialist, UC Davis and Pallavi Nahata, Research Associate, DairyExperts, led students on field sampling and molecular biology work, respectively. The main emphasis of the students' project was to improve laboratory techniques for the diagnosis of plant pathogenic bacteria. Students utilized quantitative Real Time PCR to assess the extraction efficiency of two commercial DNA kits. Support for the molecular work at LREC was provided by Therese Kapaun, LREC Staff Research Associate.
Both Kim and Garcia started their undergraduate programs at COS and plan to complete their BSs in the UC and CSU systems. Kim is transferring to UCLA in September and is interested in a career in clinical laboratory research. Garcia intends to transfer to CSU Fullerton in 2018. In completion of their internship, Kim and Garcia presented a poster presentation of their results at the SURGE Symposium at COS on 8/11/2017.
1. Hyo Jin Kim, sets up well plate for PCR.
2. Hyo Jin Kim and LizBeth Garcia, interpret quantitative PCR output.
The US Congress provides funding to the Cochran Fellowship Program to provide training for emerging market countries. The goal of the program is to reduce non-tariff barrier disruptions between countries. Visiting from Pakistan were 6 scientists, administrators and members of private industry and accompanied by USDA representatives. This particular group is studying Phytosanitary compliance in fresh produce supply chains of apple, papaya and citrus. Lindcove provided lectures by Dr. Beth Grafton-Cardwell on LREC facilities and integrated pest management of citrus, Dr. Rock Christiano described the Citrus Clonal Protection Program and Donald Cleek demonstrated the citrus fruit grading system. Leading the tour was John Loyd, USDA Trade Specialist.