Photos: Microbes versus insects

Photos: Microbes versus insects

Summary: Killing bugs with naturally occurring (but selectively bred) micro-organisms could save farmers billions of dollars a year in crop damage.

TOPICS: Tech Industry

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  • Army moth worms

    Army moth worms up close. Traditionally, farmers have used chemical sprays to kill them, but a chemical residue remains on the plant. AgraQuest has devised organic pesticides for killing the bugs up to the time of harvest. The recently discovered fungus muscador, found in a Central American cinnamon tree, secretes gases that can kill them too. The company will ultimately try to include muscador in its products.

  • Aphids

    Aphids. Ugh. A plant extract discovered by a Canadian company may help control them better.

  • Molecular magnet

    This machine is essentially a big magnet for exciting molecules so that scientists can study their composition. The structure of the molecule must be documented prior to EPA approval.

Topic: Tech Industry

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