- Area Wide Management
- Sterile insect technique – enhancing fitness and performance of flies
- Ecology and management of fruit fly
- Silicon based insect-plant bi- and tri- trophic interactions
Olivia Reynolds (née Kvedaras) is an applied ecologist 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 3-year postdoctoral fellowship in 2004 with the South African Sugarcane Research Institute and the University of Witwatersrand. 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 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, where her research interest’s centre on investigating biological forms of management of fruit fly, with particular emphasis on the Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni Froggatt, and the role of silicon in plant-based defences at three trophic levels (plant, pest & parasitoid/predator). Olivia leads several projects, one which aims to develop a model Area Wide Management program incorporating the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) to inform the roll-out of future campaigns.
This project is also developing an understanding of the microbial symbionts important in both domesticated and wild-collected larvae, with a view to developing a larval probiotic. Further, a molecular assay is being developed to differentiate between sterile and wild mated female flies (and sterile and wild flies), which will aid determining the success of SIT programs. Olivia is also working closely with industry (Australian Steel Mill Services) and colleagues investigating the mechanisms by which silicon application increases plant resistance to shoot and root pests via direct (e.g. mandibular wear, reduced digestibility) and indirect defence (involving natural enemy attraction via herbivore induced plant volatiles)).
Olivia also collaborates on several national and international projects, including one which is looking at developing female attractants/lures for fruit flies and one which will lead to specific management recommendations on optimal environmental conditions, release rates and release locations for sterile fruit flies. In her role as Jinshan Scholar, Olivia is working on a large international collaborative program of research investigating habitat management, biological control and genetic manipulation of insect pests of subtropical crops, as three novel strategies for ecologically based pest management in support of food security and sustainable crop production. This work will serve as a model for other pest systems. Olivia also supervises several national and international postgraduate students and postdoctoral fellows.
Current appointments and activities
- Senior Research Scientist, Industry & Investment NSW (Primary Industries), AUSTRALIA.
- Senior Adjunct Lecturer, Charles Sturt University, AUSTRALIA.
- Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation member, AUSTRALIA
- Jinshan Scholar, Fujian Agriculture & Forestry University, Fuzhou, CHINA
- International Steering Committee on Fruit Flies of Economic Significance, AUSTRIA
- Australian Bio-Protection Initiative, AUSTRALIA
- Fruit Fly Research and Technical Team, AUSTRALIA
- National Fruit Fly Working Group, AUSTRALIA
- Editor, Insects
- Editor, international bulletin, Fruit Fly News
- BSc University of New England (Science Dept.), 1996
- PhD - University of New England (Rural Science Dept.), accepted without amendment 2003
- Area Wide Integrated Pest Management incorporating the Sterile Insect Technique to control the Queensland fruit fly (Horticulture Innovation Australia (HIA))
- Get tough, get toxic and get a bodyguard: using silicon to augment direct and indirect anti-herbivore defences in cereals (Australian Steel Mill Services and University of Western Sydney)
- Adaptive area-wide management of Qfly using SIT: Guidelines for efficient and effective pest suppression and stakeholder adoption (Rural Research and Development for Profit), CSIRO lead
- Improved population management system for Queensland fruit fly (HIA), Plant & Food, NZ lead
Current postgraduate and postdoctoral projects
- Development of a larval probiotic for mass-reared Queensland fruit fly (Horticulture Innovation Australia Research Fellow)
- Semiochemical-mediated enhancement of sterile male Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Diptera: Tephritidae) as part of the Sterile Insect Technique (Endeavour Fellowship and Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation)
- Development of an adult probiotic for sterile male Queensland fruit flies (Plant Biosecurity Cooperative Research Centre - PhD)
- Biology, behavior and population structure of the fruit fly parasitoid, Fopius arisanus (Charles Sturt University International Postgraduate Research Scholarship - PhD)
- Floral nectar preferences of tephritid fruit fly parasitoids (Fujian Agricultural and Forestry University Scholarship - Masters)
Reynolds OL, Padula M, Zeng RS & Gurr GM. 2016. Silicon: potential to promote direct and indirect effects on plant defence against arthropod pests. Frontiers in Plant Science, 7, article 744.
Reynolds OL, Barchia I, Osborne T & Crisp P. 2016. Specialized Pheromone and Lure Application Technology as an alternative male annihilation technique to manage Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Diptera: Tephritidae). Journal of Economic Entomology, advance access 1–7 doi: 10.1093/jee/tow023.
Reynolds OL, Finlay A & Osborne T. 2015. Osage orange, Maclura pomifera (Rafinesque.) C.K. Schneid.: a new host record for Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Diptera: Tephritidae) and Delia platura (Meigen) (Diptera: Anthomyiidae). General and Applied Entomology, 43, 19-23.
Reynolds OL & Orchard BA. 2015. Roving and stationary release of adult sterile Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Diptera; Tephritidae). Crop Protection, 76, 24-32.
Mo J, Dominiak, BC, Stevens MM & Reynolds OL. 2014. Pest behaviour insights from quarantine surveillance of male Queensland fruit ﬂy, Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) (Diptera: Tephritidae). Crop Protection, 62, 55-63.
Reynolds OL, Orchard BA, Collins, S & Taylor, P. 2014. Yeast hydrolysate supplementation increases sterile Queensland fruit fly, Bactrocera tryoni (Froggatt) field longevity and abundance. Bulletin of Entomological Research, 104, 251-61.
Collins, S, Taylor, P & Reynolds, OL. 2014. Combined effects of dietary yeast supplementation and methoprene treatment on sexual maturation of Queensland fruit fly. Journal of Insect Physiology 61, 51–57.
Taylor, PW, Khan, M, Collins, SR & Reynolds, OL. 2013. Yeast hydrolysate supplement increases starvation vulnerability of Queensland fruit fly. Physiological Entomology,38, 337-343.
Zamek, AL, Reynolds, OL, Mansfield, S, Micallef, JL & Gurr, GM. 2013. Carbohydrate diet and reproductive performance of a fruit fly parasitoid, Diachasmimorpha tryoni. Journal of Insect Science 13:74. Available online: http://www.insectscience.org/13.74
Simpson, M, Connick, VJ, Guisard, Y, Reynolds, OL, Saliba, A & Gurr, GM (2012) Chapter 9 Chemical ecology providing novel strategies against vineyard pests in Australia. In ‘Arthropod Management in Vineyards’ (Eds. Charles Vincent, Noubar Bostanian and Rufus Isaacs), Springer. pp. 119-138.
James, D, Orre, S, Reynolds, O & Simpson, M. (2012) Employing chemical ecology to understand and exploit biodiversity for pest management. In ‘Biodiversity and insect pests: key issues for sustainable management’ (Eds. Geoff M Gurr, Steve D Wratten & Bill E Snyder) Wiley Blackwell. pp. 185-195.
Fields of Research
070603 Horticulture Crop Protection (Pests, Diseases and Weeds)
Keyword/Phrase list of research interests
- Fruit fly behavior and ecology
- Area Wide Management
- Insect-plant interactions
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