When you think of the southern Cape, you think of the Tsitsikamma: long beaches and the rolling mountains that follow the N2 freeway. When you work in forest health, one thinks of the Sirex woodwasp and pine pitch canker (PPC). The management of both these diseases is ongoing. And while there is a biocontrol option available for Sirex, we are constantly looking to improve on our gains. Between 19-23 October, the member of the Tree Protection Co-operative Programme (TPCP) in FABI travelled to the southern Cape to collect Sirex logs from a site in Lottering that had, four months ago, been inoculated with different strains of the biocontrol agent, Deladenus siricidicola. You can read about that trip here.

In addition to collecting these important logs team members, Prof. Bernard Slippers, Prof. Brett Hurley, Caitlin Gevers, Harm Barten and Darryl Herron also spent time doing extension work, looking at a number of pine compartments between the Swartvlei and Lottering. In some of the old Eucalyptus fire breaks between some of the farms, a number of insect pests were discovered, including Leptocybe invasaGonipterus sp. 2, Spondyliaspis plicatuloides and Glycaspis brimblecombei. Specimens were collected for Harm, Caitlin and Privilege Makunde's projects. We would like to thank Braam du Preez, Theo and his chainsaw team, Christel Malek, Donovan from Ezigro Seedlings, Henry Cunningham and Cassie Carstens for taking of their time to help us in field.