responsible for devastating the production of cassava in the country.
What is cassava you ask?
The first image below is an image of a cassava plant and directly below that image is a
photo of a full grown root of the plant
Source of top image: http://amber.gsc.riken.jp/cassava/
Source of bottom image: http://www.food-info.net/uk/products/rt/cassava.htm
"Cassava is a shrubby, tropical, perennial plant, from which tapioca and other foods are made.The plant
grows tall, sometimes reaching 15 feet, with leaves varying in shape and size.
The edible parts are the tuberous root and leaves."
"Around the world, cassava is a vital staple for about 500 million people!!! Cassava's starchy roots
produce more food energy per unit of land than any other staple crop. Its leaves, commonly
eaten as a vegetable in parts of Asia and Africa, provide vitamins and protein. Nutritionally,
the cassava is comparable to potatoes, except that it has twice the fiber content and a
higher level of potassium."
Like most crops in our world, the Cassava plant must contend with the fact that certain insects
have evolved and which consume the Cassava plant in order to survive. Under many situations
might decide to use a chemical pesticide to try and reduce the population of the insect pest
plant. However, instead of using chemicals., scientists in Thailand are using a natural
enemy of the
cassava mealybug,to try and control the population of this pest. Here is a photo of a
and here is the insect which scientists have found naturally preys on the mealybug,
none other than
the " Anagyrus Lopezi" wasp:
unnecessary to try and control the mealy bug with potentially toxic pesticides!
the mealy bug, which turned out to be "Anagyrus Lopezi":