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Study, Circumstance

The Cassava plant was brought to The african continent from South America in the 16th century. Another four years the starchy thickened roots became the primary source of foodstuff for an incredible number of Africans, featuring up to 70% of the suggested daily intake. The cassava plant may be the habitat in the cassava mealybug and is broken by the bug.

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The challenge ” The cassava mealybug- eating cassava plant- neurological control of mealybug by using wasps.

When the cassava plant was introduced to The african continent most of the predators such as mites and plant diseases, were not also introduced for that reason leaving the rose free of most of its potential predators but in the 1970’s an infestation called the cassava mealybug was accidently introduced from Latin America(2) The infestation is a exceptional insect but it really quickly spread across the entire cassava plant growing region and because of the lack of organic predators inside 10 years it probably is the most important infestations insect about cassava causing a lack of up 80% of harvest. The mealybug(5) shown on left hand side of text offers damaged the cassava plant life by stroking sap via roots, tender leaves, petioles and fruits form the grow.

The significantly infested leaves of the cassava plant can turn discolored (3) and gradually dry a serious attack on the cassava plant can result in permanently destryoing of leaves. On the correct is a photo (4) of your cassava grow which has been infested by the mealybug. Another issue with the mealybugs is that some will put in a toxic substance although feeding causing deformation with the cassava herb and therefore there is less meals to be harvesting. Although time is not regular, based on biological occasions and circumstances such as area under cultivation and weather factors, it seems that major fresh diseases or strains of cassava disease tend to appear every 7″10 years. Stand below shows the disease injury in Arica.

Biological methods/ processes- biological power over invasive kinds.

Cassava mosaic and mealybug control applications were launched in the 1970s (2) to battle these two concerns, the decrease in crop because of the mealybug eating the plant and further fall because of the spread of disease. The Company of Natural Control (CIBC) based in Trinidad and the Worldwide Institute of Tropical Farming (IITA) explored into the way the mealybug was kept in order in South America. They ultimately found which a tiny wasp (smaller compared to the head of any pin) named the Leptomastix, which laid its ova on the mealybug was to get mealy pests under control as a result protecting the cassava grow. The picture within the right displays the small wasp on the mealybug larvae.

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The picture on the left shows an infected cassava tuber dug from the field and sliced open. The wasps were able to control the cassava consuming the cassava crops by wasp laying eggs on the mealybug that they grew on the mealybug, the wasp larvae then killing the mealybug this would have a huge effect on the population as observed in South America, of the mealybug and so restoring the natural harmony. This could be the breakthrough that they can were looking for and may control the mealybug.

Conference the challenge

Testing were operate on the wasp by the CABI Bioscience in the united kingdom. There the mealybug was tested to view how remarkably specific they can be to the cassava mealybug sponsor because if they were not really then they could also affect various other insects in the continent and therefore would be also dangerous to introduce towards the area. The results revealed that the wasp was remarkably specific for the insect (mealybug) so were given the okay to get shipped to Africa so they then could be reared then the sent out to other areas around The african continent. This was a massive breakthrough while without this research it had the ability to cause huge destruction on the environment and the economic climate because of further damage to additional crops.

Appropriateness. -Has succeeded with the mealybug.

The mealybug feeds within the cassava stem, petiole, and leaf near the growing level of the cassava plant. During feeding, the mealybug injects a contaminant that causes tea leaf curling, decreasing of shoot growth, and eventual tea leaf withering. This is actually the effect the cassava mealybug has on the rose resulting in a huge loss of plant due to infested plant harvest. The produce loss in infested vegetation is approximated to be about 60 percent of basic and 100 percent of the leaves the root is an essential source of foodstuff so this causes a huge problem for the crop produce. The outcome was a reduction in mealybug damage was seen in the first season following launch in the two leaf and the root, and full control was typically achieved inside 2″4 years (6) following and now after a decade (10 years) the cassava mealybug and the wasps lived in all-natural balance while using mealybug inhabitants down to no greater than 10% of what they had been 10 years ago at a peak in the infestation. (1) Now the cassava can grow with no or very little damage from the mealybug because the wasp has ceased the 60% root harm and the fully of leaf destruction. Deliver losses while reported by farmers are proportioned at about 80 percent during the 1983 cassava mealybug outbreak yet were lowered to 43% in 1979 pre infestation levels. (7)


Environmental- A great environmental inference is that if the wasps happen to be introduced to south America there was a risk that it could have a big impact on the foodstuff chain because by taking apart one affected person or attaining one can have got a topple on influence on others such as of the wasp was then hunted with a predator this may leave it is normal hope to grow therefore having an more than population which can then have knock about effects for their pray and so forth and so on right up until extinction of the food source. Causing problems for South America in the economy and for the environment as well. This environmental implication causes an imbalance of the normal balance of wildlife, this might have a knock about effect of the overall environmental around and the influence on the human populace.


Intended for the farmers of Africa the monetary impact has become useful and successful by increasing significantly there deliver percentage as a result increasing the money income. Every pound of investment inside the mealybug job control function has delivered between 2 hundred and five-hundred pounds. These kinds of benefits for the environment from this environmental remedy with no costs but a huge increase in plants harvest, clearly is a clear advantage monetarily to the maqui berry farmers. By presenting the wasps there will be a number of tests that must be run ahead of can be realized for example screening the wasps to see if these were highly certain to the mealybug and whether or not they would cause destruction upon other unwanted pests in the environment. The cost of establishing the job is costly especially since it is a longitudinal study so will have a great deal of money spent which is spent through the years as needs to be monitored through the years.

Benefits for the humans

There was a anxious need for something which could end the plant destruction on the cassava flower and by choosing the wasp that ate the mealybug which was destroying the crop manufactured the plants loss reduce dramatically There were 80% of crop lost so with the aid of the cassava mealybug task has gone to 43 % (7) this kind of a huge profit for the locals economically it earns more income to them and also more food, Being a large food source intended for the local people. The cassava plant is the third-largest source of food carbohydrates inside the tropic location. The cassava is a significant food in the developing community, providing a simple diet for around 500 million people. Cassava is one of the most drought-tolerant plants, capable of growing about marginal soils. Nigeria is the world’s greatest producer of cassava. The cassava is an excellent source of carbs for the folks although it falls short of in healthy proteins.

Risks for the environment

While there is many reasons how come there was a need for this biological control of the cassava mealybug, but there were also a large risk of environmental surroundings being damaged for example , in the event the wasp had not been highly particular to the mealybug and caused a different plant to increase out of control this might also affect the natural balance of the environment resulting in and upset of the natural potential predators food source leading to interruption of an environment and annihilation of a few insects that can have a large effect on predators higher up the food string. The wasp being introduced to the environment would have caused further damage within the environment doing damage to the local culture if it had effected an additional plant in the environment with could have brought on further harm on the regional economy and their food resource. The food sequence on the right shows how a small animal’s decrease of annihilation would have an effect on along the foodstuff chain leading to effecting the very best food predator and can conveniently lead to annihilation of this animal.

Alternative alternatives

Pesticides may be used to control out breaks of mealybugs. It is not necessarily very easy to manage, as the cassava mealybug is protected in hydrophobic wax which usually repels water-based insecticides therefore making it very hard ton successfully irradiate the mealybug that way of natural control. Also unless mealybugs are dispersed with the insecticide at peak times the treatment will never be effective. Firstly because mealybugs are guarded from aqueous sprays by way of a wax layer and seek out sheltered sites at particular points by which to supply, insecticides should be applied when ever mealybugs have got least polish and are the majority of exposed. Now is in early spring as the mealybugs will feed on the foliage with this point the mealybugs are young and have never had enough time to produce the total thick coating of feel coating.

And therefore this leaves the mealybug unprotected from your insecticide. You can also get fewest leaves at this point therefore is more difficult for the, mealybug to hide from the insecticide making higher success rate. Insecticides used after Holiday has limited effect, When mealybugs have established there placement on the plant (usually by mid-January onwards), they are virtually impossible to take out or control with insecticides at this stage therefore this means that there needs to be a lot of research removed into discovering the perfect time to utilize the pesticide as a result costing a lot as is a longitudinal examine and may differ from year to year.

Hereditary modification.

Another possibility that may be being looked at it hereditary modification of plants, this was done by Doctor Stanford. He was looking into harvest improvement and saw the strength of genetic assortment and how there were limited changed possible using just picky breeding. Then he became linked to plant hereditary engineering analysis and showed that there was numerous family genes which were possibly useful in plant plants nonetheless they were desperate for a method intended for delivering these types of genes in to the plant genome, there was zero transformation technology(8). Further exploration showed that shooting DNA into cellular material thereby breaking through cell wall space and membranes. This was called the gene gun and it was capable of transform early transgenic plants. This gene gun would be able to in theory change the genetic makeup of the cassava plant in order that it could offer some type of protection against predators. This will also have hazards as you do not really know how the modification will certainly affect every one of its potential predators and could consequently have an effect on these people so could cause harm in some manner. Although there is fewer risk in destroying the natural environment as it is not leading to other pests a problem.


In conclusion the biological charge of the mealybug has had a massive effect and has brought on the problem in the economy and environment to get resolved as a result keeping a harmonious relationship between the creatures and the human population by keeping a natural balance between the small wasp and the mealybug.

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