We have a new predator available for aphid control. This native Australian ladybird beetle (Harmonia octomaculata) is an entirely new biocontrol product. It was collected by Dan Papacek from a melon crop in North Queensland, where he found it actively proving its credentials as a voracious aphid predator.
We have been busy developing a rearing method for this species and we are pleased to announce that it is now available for treatment of aphid infestations.
Although this product is still in the R&D phase, it has already proven itself to be both a fantastic aphid predator and a prolific breeder. So, although we have only limited experience applying this species as an introduced biocontrol agent in the field, we are very excited about its potential to provide effective aphid control in a wide range of crop environments.
Website New Labybird
Cool stuff! I still reckon than any control methods are first-aid for the current crop and better environmentally friendly than using toxic sprays.
Long term the best solution is gradually upping the quality of the soil with carbon, organic matter, minerals, microbes and worms. It takes time and finesse to plant the right crop at the right time so the crop is not stressed and so encourages pests.
Fascinating alternative. As Elaine says, best to have a strong crop in the first place, but I would love to try this sort of pest control in the future.