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Brazil body finds spider mite predator

Brazilian researchers have discovered a natural predator to the agricultural pest, the two-spotted spider mite ( Tetranychus urticae). The unearthing of the strain of the pesticide–resistant predatory mite, Neoseiulus californicus, came from the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo’s Instituto Biológico (IB-APTA). Spider mite infestations were reduced “by 90% and at seven times lower cost than conventional treatments”, in test on strawberries, the IB-APTA says. The researchers recommend its release, while the spider mite population is low, at around 1-5 per leaflet. Otherwise, the application of a selective acaricide would be required. It is effective under cover and in the open, the IB-APTA adds.

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