- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
UC Berkeley professor Nick Mills will head to UC Davis on Wednesday, Feb. 20 to speak on just that: "The Light Brown Apple Moth--Not a Typical Invader."
The seminar, hosted by the UC Davis Department of Entomology, is set from 12:10 to 1 p.m. in Room 1022 of the Life Sciences Addition, corner of Hutchison and Kleiber Hall drives.
Mills, with the UC Berkeley Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, says "exotic insect pests typically become invasive by building populations and spreading through a new geographic region in the absence of constraints from co-evolved natural enemies. While it is well known that environments can differ substantially in their resistance to invasions of alien species little is known of the factors responsible for this variation."
The light brown apple moth, aka LBAM, has caused quite a stir since its detection in California in 2006. That's when emeritus professor Jerry Powell of UC Berkeley discovered the invader in his back yard in Berkeley.
As a leafrolling caterpillar, LBAM loves just about everything from A to Z: apple, apricot, beans, caneberries (blackberry, blueberry, boysenberry, raspberry), cabbage, camellia, chrysanthemum, citrus, clover, cole crops, eucalyptus, jasmine, kiwifruit, peach, pear, persimmon, plantain, pumpkin, strawberry, tomato, rose and zea mays (corn).
Mills says that since its discovery in California, LBAM "has accumulated a rich set of resident parasitoid species comparable to that seen in its native Australia. However, in contrast to the low levels of parasitism that invasive hosts typically experience from resident parasitoids, parasitism levels for light brown apple moth are very high."
He will discuss, among other things, "the importance of resident parasitoids as barriers to the invasions of light brown apple moth in California."
Plans are to record the seminar for later posting on UCTV. Hosting the seminar is entomologist Mary Louise Flint of the Department of Entomology/UC Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program.