The world's largest aphid species found at Rothamsted Research

The giant willow aphid, Tuberolachnus salignus, has been found on the National Willow Collection

The willow aphid, Tuberolachnus salignus

The collection has been established at Rothamsted to conserve and study diverse types of willow used for basket making, cricket bats and more recently green bio-energy fuel. "These aphids can grow to a quarter of an inch long, making them a giant among aphids" says scientist Dr Ian Shield. "They have formed huge colonies on some of our willow species and we don't yet know how much harm they will do". By studying which strains of willow succumb to the aphid and which don't the scientists at Rothamsted hope to be able to identify strains of willow that could be useful for breeding aphid-resistant varieties of this useful plant

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Learning from the “healthy” to protect the “infected”

A novel mechanism has been identified which likely contributes to resistance against Septoria leaf blotch in plant species normally non-infected with the disease, providing the clues necessary to develop control methods in wheat.

State of Nature report: views from Rothamsted Research

Rothamsted Research scientists comment on the 2016 State of Nature report.

Pupils take on farming challenge

Teams of school pupils pitch their ideas to reduce slug damage to crops after meeting scientists at Rothamsted Research and visiting a local farm.

Seek and you shall find: bees remain excellent searchers even when sick

Scientists have found that honeybees exhibit a characteristic flight pattern to explore their surroundings, even when affected by disease.

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For further information, please contact:
Professor Angela Karp (comms@rothamsted.ac.uk), Tel: +44 (0) 1582 938 855

About Rothamsted Research

We are the longest running agricultural research station in the world, providing cutting-edge science and innovation for over 170 years. Our mission is to deliver the knowledge and new practices to increase crop productivity and quality and to develop environmentally sustainable solutions for food and energy production.

Our strength lies in the integrated, multidisciplinary approach to research in plant, insect and soil science.
Rothamsted Research is strategically funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)

About BBSRC

BBSRC invests in world-class bioscience research and training on behalf of the UK public. Our aim is to further scientific knowledge, to promote economic growth, wealth and job creation and to improve quality of life in the UK and beyond.

Funded by Government, BBSRC invested £473M in world-class bioscience, people and research infrastructure in 2015-16. We support research and training in universities and strategically funded institutes. BBSRC research and the people we fund are helping society to meet major challenges, including food security, green energy and healthier, longer lives. Our investments underpin important UK economic sectors, such as farming, food, industrial biotechnology and pharmaceuticals.

More information about BBSRC, our science and our impact.
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