Agriculture seeks help from Europe to combat red palm weevil in Rio Chícamo and Calblanque

Both spaces are framed in the Red Natura 2000

The palm of LIC River Chícamo, consisting of over 25,000 copies, is declared as a focus of the species from April 2009

The Ministry of Agriculture and Water, through the General Directorates of Environment and Agro-based Industry and Agricultural Training, has requested the grant of a LIFE project for the long-term conservation of existing palm and palm hearts Sites of Community Interest ( LIC) 'Rio Chícamo' and 'Calblanque, Mount of Ashes and Rock of the Eagle', before the great threat posed by exotic invasive beetle known as red palm weevil (Rhynchophorus ferrugineus), which is killing large numbers of palms in Murcia.

This initiative has the support of the City of Abanilla and its partners participants to the University of Murcia and businesses Agricultural Health Econex SL, Glen Biotech SL and Tragsa Group.

The objective of this project is to find novel effective ways to contribute to the survival of riparian habitat palm of LIC River Chícamo in Abanilla (comprised of more than 25,000 copies), and palmetto garrigas LIC Calblanque integrated both in the Red Natura 2000, compared with the effects of that plague.

Among the proposed actions contained demonstrate the feasibility of effective means of detection, through technology linked to drones, faster and with a good cost / benefit, and establish, through the involvement of local communities and private owners a EWS zonal and barriers to entry and spread through belts traps high efficiency and infective trapping based on flight patterns.

It also raises control the population of red palm weevil in the environment of LIC River Chícamo (where it was detected the pest in April 2009), reaching close to eradication levels, prevent their spread species palmácea Chamaerops humilis in LIC Calblanque, by establishing protocols for prevention and raising awareness of the role to be played by society in the control of invasive alien species.

Importing palm

The main vector of introduction of red palm weevil in Europe was the import of palm trees.

The first outbreak was detected in Spain in the province of Granada in 1995. Subsequently has been expanding to the Valencian Community (2005), New York (2005), Canary and Balearic Islands (2006), Ceuta (2009) and Aragon (2010) .

The first record of the species in the Region of Murcia dates from 2005. Currently there are about 40 outbreaks detected.

Source: CARM

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