“The problem expands for avocado growers: 9 beetle species carry deadly fungus”
Source: Science Daily – https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/04/170412111714.htm
Summary: Originally determined to be ravaging avocado trees in South Florida by transmitting the laurel wilt pathogen, the red ambrosia beetle are determined to be rare in avocado groves, in addition to determining that 6 other species of beetle can transfer this pathogen. Researchers at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences are now seeking better strategies for controlling the transfer of of the disease causing fungal spores carried among these beetles.
Connection to Class: This article is essentially looking at the idea of microbial management to prevent the spread of disease. Our class lectures mainly look at how humans can control disease using proper hygiene and other antimicrobial techniques(i.e. sterilization, antimicrobial agents, etc.). Scientists in this scenario are seeking ways at preventing the spread of disease causing fungal spores that ravage avocado groves.
Analysis: What I found most interesting about the article is the number of potential culprits causing the spread of the laurel wilt pathogen. Overall, I think this article is accurate and is meant to let the readers know that these researchers have changed the scope of their study and may potentially have better results in the future. Structurally, the article seemed straightforward and concise. It is easy read and isn’t dense full of scientific terminology that can confuse casual readers.
Question(s): Have they looked at potential carriers that aren’t beetles such as other insects or wildlife? Additionally, is there options for eradicating the spores from the beetles or treating these avocado trees once they are infected by laurel wilt?