Artificial vibrations can disturb the feeding behaviour of the meadow spittlebug, which is responsible for the transmission of Xylella fastidiosa from infected plants to healthy ones, thus curbing the spread of the plant pathogen, scientists have said at a major conference.
The emission of man-made vibrations during the feeding of the insect on plants can reduce the ingestion of the sap, which is the mechanism with which the spittlebug acquires the bacterium from diseased olive trees and can transmit it to healthy ones, Sabina Avosani from the University of Trento explained.
The research was carried out under the EU-funded XF-ACTORS project.
As part of the project, the same group of researchers examined and identified the mating vibrations emitted by male and female specimens and suggested low environmental impact "birth control" techniques.
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