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Bioterrorism on Naturalized Eucalyptus in California?

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  • Peter Bernhardt
    Dear Colleagues: Dr David Low is a biologist at Monash University in Victoria, Australia. He sends out a weekly digest of articles on weeds and weed controls
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 12, 2012
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      Dear Colleagues:

      Dr David Low is a biologist at Monash University in Victoria, Australia.  He sends out a weekly digest of articles on weeds and weed controls known as "The Weed's Network."  Subscription is free and I've enjoyed mine for a year, or so.  He picked the following article from another online magazine (see below).  

      The following link(s) may amuse Australians and surprise Americans.  Eucalyptus species are grown all over California.  As none are native species they flourish due to the absence of native pests. I remember amazing, huge trees after visiting the U. of California at Berkeley in the early 1980's.  If you read the following article you will see they are not pest free anymore.  The article suggests that someone is visiting Australia, collecting  eucalyptus pests and releasing them in California.  I bring this to the attention of members of NAPPC and the bee monitoring group as some of the new, invasive insects are wood-boring beetles.  That probably means they are in the family Cerambycidae, emerging as longicorns.  In Australia, many cerambycids feed on nectar and pollen as winged adults and may be pollinators of some woody species such as native acacias.  Also, Californian bee keepers might want to comment on any changes in seasonal honey flows from the eucalyptus groves they've used for years. 

      The psyllids mentioned in the article secrete coverings of sweet wax (Australians call them lerps).  These insects form colonies and live in complex relations with ants and an Australian honeyeater bird with greenish plumage known as the bell miner, Manorina  melanophorys (Meliphagidae).  

      Peter Bernhardt


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