Thursday, May 27, 2010

Biocontrol Released for Water Hyacinth

Water Hyacinth is an invasive, free floating, aquatic plant that is problematic in the southeastern United States. Native to South America, the plant affects water traffic, water quality, water use, biodiversity and infrastructure for pumping and hydroelectric operations. Water Hyacinth also lowers oxygen levels which kill fish and increases populations of vectors of human and animal disease. Scientists have released an insect called Megamelus scutellaris to help control the water hyacinth. These insects feed on the sap of water hyacinth and their population increases rapidly, which will enable them to quickly impact the invasive population. Click here to read more on biocontrol of water hyacinth.