The atoll of Fakaofo in Tokelau was struggling to deal with a problem outbreak of breadfruit / Seychelles scale (Icerya seychellarum). With the generous assistance of our building resilience project funders, we started a biocontrol project to assist the Fakaofo community.
Based on advice from experts at SPC and Plant and Food Research New Zealand, Bugs for Bugs Australia, CSIRO Australia, and the PestNet community it was decided that the ladybird Rodolia cardinalis was the best biocontrol option for Tokelau. Fortunately this species is in Samoa. Thanks to the generous and persistent collection efforts of MAF Samoa staff, two releases of Rodolia, as well as the mealybug destroyer Cryptolaemus montrouzeri, have been made. The Environment staff on Fakaofo, together with village support staff are continuing with monitoring.