People have been designing fertilization robots for a long time; however, so far, nature has provided us with the best pollinators we have. Honey bees have the sensitive skill, magnificently small, fluffy bodies that stimulate the anthers just right, and an unparalleled fitness for flying from one bloom to another. Yet, pollen isn't the main valuable cargo that honey bees could spread among blossoms.
Bee vectoring technology or entomovectoring is a new approach used by the researchers using bumble bees, honey bees, and orchard bees to deliver biological control agents to crops. The idea is that, since many plant pathogens spread by vaccinating blossoms, farmers could forestall disease outbreaks by getting bees to convey beneficial organisms to the blossoms first, which either outcompete or outright kill the would-be infectious agent.
Knowing About Fire Blight –
Some trees like pear & apple are highly susceptible to a disease known as fire blight. It is caused mainly by a bacterial infection that colonizes the stamen, spreads to the rootstock and eventually kills the tree. Due to these diseases, farmers have started applying many streptomycin antibiotics to such trees. However, there are still many non-pathogenic bacteria capable of preventing fire blight, provided they colonize the stamen first. A portion of these microorganisms are now formed into enlisted blight-prevention products, like Serenade, yet are not frequently utilized to some degree due to difficulty inoculating the delicate stamens. Who would prefer to do this occupation over a honey bee?
To find more, researchers are studying how the Japanese orchard bee (Osmia cornifrons) can be used to apply Serenade to apple flowers. Serenade is an effective biological product that can colonize flowers' stamens and successfully put off fire blight infections by outcompeting new attackers.
Osmia cornuta, other species of bees are also efficient pollinators of spring-flowering rosaceous fruit crops like apples and cherries. In addition, these bees are covered with lots of body hairs that give effective methods for gathering vector particles while leaving the gadget's home box. Since orchard bees additionally have life cycles that are all around planned for early-season crops, are more faithful to natural product trees than honey bees, and are more proficient pollinators on a per-visit basis, they are great contenders delivering Serenade to flowers. Although, as solitary honey bees that are sold as "honey bee condos" of nesting tubes, formulating a methodology to stack the plantation honey bees with their new cargo was a challenge.
The researchers directed this work in a greenhouse to guarantee that their honey bees were the ones in particular that could be vectoring Serenade to the blossoms. They also needed to test if clean bees could spread the item from recently vaccinated blossoms to native blossoms. To do this, they moved the little apple trees that were at that point presented to Serenade out of the nursery and close to unexposed trees, alongside a honey bee condominium that contained no Serenade.
Reassuringly, they tracked down that only one day after the move, B subtilis colonized the unexposed blossoms, as well. Since the recently inoculated blossoms were the most prominent wellspring of B. subtilis around, the native blossoms presumably acquired their bacterial settlements from the generally clean bees transferring bacteria between flowers. In addition, the B. subtilis populace developed as time continued, making what the creators call a "self-perpetuating system."
All pollinators visiting the inoculated blossoms, not simply O. coniferous [the Japanese orchard bee], ought to have the option to move the B. subtilis settlements to new blossoms as they open while underscoring that more work should be done to decide ideal stocking densities and how often the inoculation ramps need to be refilled.
According to Mr. Basem Barry, founder & CEO of Geohoney, this bee vectoring technology effectively enables successful crop protection. Furthermore, adopting this approach drastically reduces the number of waste products and off-target applications. This, in turn, will work effectively in delivering targeted crop control and help in precision agriculture in the coming times.