Monday, 24 March 2014

Tiny weapons wage war on flies

TINY sensors glued to flies will help scientists deploy infiltrators to help protect the $6.9 billion horticultural industry.

The CSIRO has developed a sterile strain of male-only Queensland fruit flies to disrupt the insects' breeding cycles. Each could prevent countless females from breeding because female fruit flies -- unlike the males -- mate only once. The approach, known as sterile insect technology, has been used against fruit flies for 50 years but the national science agency plans to unleash the first flies sterilised by genetic engineering rather than radiation, which hinders them from competing for females.

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