UC ANR's vice president opens the door for input
Barbara Allen-Diaz in a commentary published today in AgAlert.
"I look forward to working with you and to hearing your ideas on priorities for research innovations, priorities in your area that need science-based solutions, and ideas on strengthening our partnership in the years to come," Allen-Diaz wrote.
Allen-Diaz said UC ANR is concerned about the impact of recent budget reductions on the number of UC ANR specialists and advisors, which is currently at its lowest number in more than 60 years.
"We are also challenged by our aging work force," she said. "We expect half of our current specialists and advisors to retire in the next six to eight years. We are carefully planning for replacing these positions, and determining the specialties and locations to best serve the needs of California. This planning must be informed by our various clienteles."
New tool to fight Asian citrus psyllid
Redlands Daily Facts
Amid dire predictions for the regional citrus industry, researchers are using another weapon: a natural enemy from the Punjab called Tamarixia radiata.
"The Asian citrus psyllid is about 1/8 inch long, and this wasp is even smaller," said Tom Shea, UC Cooperative Extension staff research associate.
Shea estimated that one female wasp may kill 300 Asian citrus psyllid nymphs in her lifetime. The psyllid itself is not a serious problem, he said, but it is a carrier for Huanlongbing, a citrus disease which has ruined much of the citrus industry in Florida. HLB has been discovered in five states, including a recent discovery in Texas. To date it has not been found in California.