- Ecology and management of fruit fly
- Sterile insect technique
- Biological control
- Silicon based insect-plant interactions
Olivia Reynolds (née Kvedaras) is a research entomologist who completed her PhD with the cotton industry on the influence of host plants on the mating behaviour of Helicoverpa armigera. After spending nearly two years travelling widely in Europe and gaining work experience after the completion of her PhD, Olivia commenced a postdoctoral fellowship in 2004 with the South African Sugarcane Research Institute and the University of Witwatersrand (Wits). Olivia's postdoctoral work with the sugarcane industry of South Africa has led to significant change in grower practice as a result of applied ecological research. Industry is now recommended to apply silicon (Si) to enhance sugarcane resistance to attack by the stem borer, Eldana saccharina Walker.
In December 2006, Olivia was appointed to NSW DPI*. Olivia is based at the Elizabeth Macarthur Agricultural Institute, and is responsible for post-production issues pertaining to fruit fly, with particular emphasis on the Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni. Olivia leads two projects, one which aims to optimise sterile fruit fly releases for improved market access and another national project which aims to optimize a strategic trapping system to provide area-wide freedom from fruit flies. Olivia also collaborates on another two fruit fly projects, one of which is looking at developing female lures for fruit flies and one of which will lead to specific management recommendations on optimal environmental conditions, release rates and release locations for sterile fruit flies. Olivia has also continued her work with silicon (Si) based insect-plant interactions and has recently demonstrated, together with colleagues, that Si applied to plants alters the Herbivore Induced Plant Volatile profile induced when attacked by pests, making plants more attractive to natural enemies; an effect that was reflected in elevated biological control in the field. Olivia also supervises a number of postgraduate students.
*NSW Department of Primary Industries became part of the Department of Industry and Investment (Industry & Investment NSW) on July 1, 2009.
Current appointments and activities
- Research Scientist, Industry & Investment NSW (Primary Industries), AUSTRALIA.
- Adjunct Lecturer, Charles Sturt University, AUSTRALIA.
- EH Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation member, AUSTRALIA
- Australian Bio-Protection Initiative member, AUSTRALIA
- Rural Management Committee member, AUSTRALIA
- Fruit Fly Research and Technical Team member, AUSTRALIA
- National Fruit Fly Working Group member, AUSTRALIA
- BSc University of New England (Science Dept), 1996
- PhD - University of New England (Rural Science Dept), accepted without amendment 2003
- Maximising the sterile insect technique (SIT) capability to enhance market access for Australian horticulture (HAL)
- Prove and effectively manage area freedom from pest fruit flies (HAL & CRC NPB)
- Developing female lures for improved market access (HAL & CRC NPB)
- The role of silicon in induced plant defence and biological control (Advanced Plant Nutrition and Australian Food and Grocery Council)
Current postgraduate and postdoctoral projects
- Native parasitic wasps: a new eradication tool against fruit fly incursion management (CRC NPB PhD stipend, Riverina Citrus Voluntary Funds and HAL Matching Voluntary Contribution Funds)
- Rearing parasitic wasps on irradiated Queensland fruit fly eggs and larvae (USRMRI and Australian Institute of Nuclear Science and Engineering Grants)
- Silicon and grapevines: fungal resistance, plant growth and wine quality (Charles Sturt University PhD stipend)
- Silicon and crop plants: induced plant defence and biological control (University of Sydney Rural Management Research Institute Grant (USRMRI))
Reynolds OL & Orchard BA (in press). Effect of adult chill treatments on recovery, longevity and flight ability of Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Diptera: Tephritidae). Bulletin of Entomological Research.
Reynolds OL, Dominiak B & Orchard B. (in press). Seasonal effects on the pupal release of the Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni Froggatt. Australian Journal of Entomology.
Kvedaras OL, An M, Choi YS & Gurr GM (2010). Silicon enhances natural enemy attraction to pest-infested plants through induced plant defences. Bulletin of Entomological Research
Reynolds OL, Keeping MJ & Meyer J. (2009). Silicon-augmented resistance of plants to herbivorous insects: a review. Annals of Applied Biology, 155 (2): 171-186
Keeping MJ & Reynolds OL (2009) Editorial. Silicon in agriculture: New insights, new significance and growing application. Annals of Applied Biology 155: 153-154
Gurr GM & Kvedaras OL (2009) Synergizing biological control: Scope for sterile insect technique, induced plant defences and cultural techniques to enhance natural enemy impact Biological Control
Kvedaras OL, Byrne MJ, Coombs NE & Keeping MG (2009) Influence of plant silicon and sugarcane cultivar on mandibular wear in larval Eldana saccharina Walker (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae). Agricultural and Forest Entomology, 11, 301-306.
Keeping MG & Kvedaras OL (2009) Epidermal silicon in sugarcane in relation to soil amendment with silicon and cultivar resistance to sugarcane borer Eldana saccharina. Environmental and Experimental Botany, 66, 54-60.
Fields of Research
070603 Horticulture Crop Protection (Pests, Diseases and Weeds)
Keyword/Phrase list of research interests
- Fruit fly
- Biological control
- Insect-plant interactions
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