NovaChem > Industry News > 2024 > Surveillance kits mitigate FAW risk

Surveillance kits mitigate FAW risk

Published on 12/01/2024

Words: Key Industries

What are the specific dangers, and what
steps can growers take to mitigate the risk of FAW infestation?
The enemy’s strength

In the famous book ‘The Art of War’, master
strategist Sun Tzu asserted: “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you needn’t fear the result of a hundred battles.”

His expanded point is this: Winning comes
from knowing and exploiting the enemy’s vulnerabilities while shielding your own weaknesses from their strengths.

Neutralise and attack.

Aside from their capacity to migrate long
distances and their lightening-speed in breeding, the primary advantage of FAW is their stealth.
As maize crops grow, FAW eggs and larvae
hide deep within the whorl of developing plants. Concealed from sight, infestations can break out before farmers are aware their crops have been invaded.

Neutralising the enemy’s advantage

If secrecy is a key to FAW’s breeding success,
how can growers remove this advantage?

Key Industries Monitoring Kits.

Monitoring kits are pheromone traps, spe
cifically engineered to attract the male moths of the species of Army Worm now threatening New Zealand.

Captured moths are a clear sign that FAW
larvae are living within a grower’s crop.

In this regard, they function like smoke
alarms, giving an early warning that a problem exists that needs to be dealt with immediately.

From defence to attack

Once a Key Industries Monitoring Kit cap
tures a moth, the next step is to carry out inspection walks to determine the extent of the infestation.

This will allow growers to carry out targeted
spray programmes to preserve their crops.

Each monitoring kit contains three stations
with sufficient pheromone lure for three months of trapping.

Positioning them on the windward side en
sures effective dispersion of pheromones into the field.

Checking them twice a week is also crucial
for pest detection.
Only a team can win the war
While early warning detection will save the individual farmer, it’s the nationwide approach that will safeguard crop-growing industries.
To this end, FAR is continually refining a predictive system that will provide growers with early warnings of the migration movements of FAW.
To enhance predictive accuracy, FAR requires a network of pheromone traps down the length of the country, with growers calling in moth-capture details to their central database. To report capture findings,

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with stylesheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so. The latest version of Firefox, Safari, Google Chrome or Internet Explorer will work best if you're after a new browser.