- Author: Ben Faber
Scientists at the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services have developed a “SmartTrap” using 3D printing technology to more efficiently catch and study the Asian citrus psyllid, the vector of citrus greening.
A five-year, $200,000 National Institute of Food and Agriculture grant awarded to Florida will allow the traps to be deployed and tested in California and Texas to prevent a similar crisis.
“This 3D printing innovation gives our scientists the best chance to find a game-changing breakthrough in the fight against citrus greening,” said Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam.
The current trapping method is a yellow sticky tape that passively accumulates all sorts of insects including dirt, making them difficult to read. The new trap specifically traps psyllids. At the moment there will be limited distribution of the traps for testing purposes, so the sticky tape will still be the main method of monitoring psyllids.