Applying the sterile insect technique for biosecurity benefits and constraints


  • D.M. Suckling



Sterile insect releases to manage or eradicate pests have been deployed increasingly in many countries against diverse targets but have not previously been seriously considered in New Zealand The increasing cost of incursions of exotic species warrants a reconsideration of the potential for any approach that can help to defend New Zealand The success of the sterile insect technique is dependent on adequate understanding of pest biology techniques for mass rearing of sufficient numbers to overcome the target population mass sterility (with excellent quality assurance) competitive fitness of released insects and release systems that ensure effective spatial targeting Legislative hurdles such as the HSNO Act (1996) may need attention to enable this approach for insects that have arrived after 1998 The first use of the sterile insect technique in New Zealand is against the painted apple moth and is a useful case study to demonstrate the potential of the approach in biosecurity




How to Cite

Suckling, D. 2003. Applying the sterile insect technique for biosecurity benefits and constraints. New Zealand Plant Protection. 56, (Aug. 2003), 21–26. DOI:




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