Friday, March 4, 2011

Biocontrol Reduces Tamarix & Slows Water Loss in the West

A research article 'Early impacts of biological control on canopy cover and water use of the invasive saltcedar tree (Tamarix spp.) in western Nevada, USA.' in Oecologia, 2010; 165 (3). The study by Robert R. Pattison, Carla M. D’Antonio, Tom L. Dudley, Kip K. Allander, Benjamin Rice shows that the saltcedar leaf beetle (Diorhabda carinulata) reduces the canopy cover of the salt cedar trees by over 90% and reduced stem water use by 50 to 70%. More research needs to be done to determine long-term reduction of water use from reducing the salt cedar canopy, but based on these results it looks promising. To read the article click here.