Forestry in South Africa
Thursday, August 11, 2022

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Fungal Communities of Eucalyptus grandis Leaves Are Influenced by the Insect Pest Leptocybe invasa
31 March, 2022
Fungal communities in above-ground tree tissues are hyperdiverse and are influenced by biotic interactions with other organisms living in or on these tissues. These biotic interactions are, however, still poorly understood. read more
A serious shoot and leaf disease caused by Colletotrichum theobromicola discovered on eucalypts in South Africa
22 March, 2022
Eucalypt plantations in South Africa make up an important part of the local forestry industry. Recently, one-year-old nursery plants of a Eucalyptus grandis × Eucalyptus urophylla variety displayed symptoms of leaf and shoot anthracnose disease. read more
Species Diversity and Distribution Characteristics of Calonectria in Five Soil Layers in a Eucalyptus Plantation
1 November, 2021
The genus Calonectria includes pathogens of various agricultural, horticultural, and forestry crops. Species of Calonectria are commonly collected from soils, fruits, leaves, stems, and roots. Some species of Calonectria isolated from soils are considered as... read more
Ophiostomatoid species associated with pine trees (Pinus spp.) infested by Cryphalus piceae from eastern China, including five new species
22 October, 2021
Cryphalus piceae attacks various economically important conifers. Similar to other bark beetles, Cr. piceae plays a role as a vector for an assortment of fungi and nematodes. Previously, several ophiostomatoid fungi were isolated from Cr. piceae in... read more
Rapid Detection of Pine Pathogens Lecanosticta acicola, Dothistroma pini and D. septosporum on Needles by Probe-Based LAMP Assays
21 June, 2021
Needle blights are serious needle fungal diseases affecting pines both in natural and productive forests. Among needle blight agents, the ascomycetes Lecanosticta acicola, Dothistroma pini and D. septosporum are of particular concern. read more
Invasion of the Polyphagous Shot Hole Borer Beetle in South Africa A Preliminary Assessment of the Economic Impacts
7 April, 2021
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Ophiostomatalean fungi associated with wood boring beetles in South Africa including two new species
6 April, 2021
Ambrosia beetles are small wood inhabiting members of the Curculionidae that have evolved obligate symbioses with fungi. The fungal symbionts concentrate nutrients from within infested trees into a usable form for their beetle partners, which then utilize the fungi as their primary source... read more
Invasion of the Polyphagous Shot Hole Borer Beetle in South Africa A Preliminary Assessment of the Economic Impacts
9 March, 2021
Few economic assessments have been developed to inform national priorities on the management of high-impact, early-stage invasive alien species (IAS). Economic assessments are biased toward sex post assessments of the costs and benefits of control options and are in need of refinement read more
Invasive gall-forming wasps that threaten non-nativeplantation-grown Eucalyptus: diversity and invasion patterns
4 September, 2020
Gall-forming hymenopterans of Eucalyptus species are highly successful invaders causing signicant damage in non-native plantation forests. read more
Genomic evidence of introgression and adaptation in a model subtropical tree species, Eucalyptus grandis
2 September, 2020
The genetic consequences of adaptation to changing environments can be deciphered using population genomics, which may help predict species' responses to global climate change.  read more
Phytophthora Species Associated with Roots of Native and Non-native Trees in Natural and Managed Forests
3 August, 2020
Roots act as a biological filter that exclusively allows only a portion of the soil-associated microbial diversity to infect the plant. This microbial diversity includes organisms both beneficial and detrimental to plants. read more
Pathologists and entomologists must join forces against forest pest and pathogen invasions
10 July, 2020
The world's forests have never been more threatened by invasions of exotic pests and pathogens, whose causes and impacts are reinforced by global change. read more
Novel species of Huntiella from naturally-occurring forest trees in Greece and South Africa
10 July, 2020
Huntiella species are wood-infecting, filamentous ascomycetes that occur in fresh wounds on a wide variety of tree species. These fungi are mainly known as saprobes although some have been associated with disease symptoms. read more
A Genome-Wide Association Study for Resistance to the Insect Pest Leptocybe invasa in Eucalyptus grandis Reveals Genomic Regions and Positional Candidate Defense Genes
7 July, 2020
The galling insect, Leptocybe invasa, causes significant losses in plantations of various Eucalyptus species and hybrids, threatening its economic viability. read more
Low genetic diversity and strong geographic structure in introduced populations of the Eucalyptus foliar pathogen Teratosphaeria destructans
29 June, 2020
The aggressive Eucalyptus leaf pathogen, Teratosphaeria destructans, causes widespread damage in tropical and subtropical Eucalyptus‐growing regions of Indonesia, China, Thailand, East Timor, Vietnam, Lao, and South Africa. read more
Scientists' warning on invasive alien species
25 June, 2020
Biological invasions are a global consequence of an increasingly connected world and the rise in human population size. read more
Poroid Hymenochaetaceae associated with trees showing wood-rot symptoms in the Garden Route National Park of South Africa
23 June, 2020
Poroid Hymenochaetaceae associated with wood rots of trees in three timber-harvesting compartments of the Garden Route National Park (GRNP), South Africa, were investigated using multilocus phylogenetic analyses and morphology of the basidiomes. read more
Expected benefits of genomic selection for growth and wood quality traits in Eucalyptus grandis
14 June, 2020
Genomic selection (GS) can substantially reduce breeding cycle times in forest trees compared to traditional breeding cycles. read more
Distribution and genetic diversity of five invasive pests of Eucalyptus in sub-Saharan Africa
28 March, 2020
Eucalyptus is one of the most planted tree genera across the world, but is heavily challenged by invasive insect pests originating from the native range of these trees. read more
Maternal effects should be considered in the establishment of forestry plantations
15 March, 2020
Breeding strategies for plants focus on the genetic influence on their phenotypes. However, the phenotype is not only the outcome of the genotype or the environmental conditions under which plants grow. read more
A first worldwide multispecies survey of invasive Mediterranean pine bark beetles (Coleoptera: Curculionidae, Scolytinae)
14 February, 2020
Several European and Mediterranean species of pine bark beetles (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae) have become established in North America and the southern hemisphere, posing a novel threat to planted and naturally-occurring pine forests. read more
Eucalyptus camaldulensis in South Africa - past, present, future
10 December, 2019
Eucalyptus camaldulensis can be seen as an iconic tree of superlatives. It is the eucalypt with the widest native range, and one of the most widely planted eucalypts around the globe. In South Africa, it is the most widespread and the most aggressively invasive eucalypt. read more
New facility launched to address biomass waste challenges, boost industry competitiveness
19 June, 2019
A R37.5 million biorefinery industry development facility has been established at the CSIR in Durban to help ensure that maximum value is extracted from biomass waste. The facility, launched by the Minister of Science and Technology, Ms Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane... read more
Research identifies alternative uses for fly ash from pulp and paper mills
4 June, 2019
CSIR researchers have found that fly ash, a by-product of the South African pulp and paper industry, can be used as a supplementary cementitious material in the production of cement concrete. The South African pulp and paper industry is under pressure to find alternative options... read more
Meeting Ethiopia’s growing demand for starch using mango seeds
3 May, 2019
Located in the Horn of Africa, Ethiopia currently imports 45% of its starch needs and, with the demand for starch expected to increase, this figure could become much higher. "A local supply of starch that does not compete with the food market is needed. read more
Alien plants threaten to use up half of the inflows into two important dams in SA
3 May, 2019
Up to 50% of the annual inflows into the Western Cape's Berg River Dam catchment and Limpopo's De Hoop Dam catchment could be used up by alien plants over a period of 45 years, if they are left uncleared. This is the warning issued by water experts Dr David Le Maitre of the CSIR. read more
CSIR informs water requirements of SA’s multi-billion rand deciduous fruit industry
24 April, 2019
With exports raking in billions of rand annually, South Africa's apple growers form an important part of the country's economic development. However, their heavy dependence on water in a country facing growing water challenges, demands an enhanced understanding of the water requirements. read more
Genetic diversity of the pine pathogen Lecanosticta acicola in Slovenia and Croatia
17 April, 2019
Brown spot needle blight (BSNB), a disease of pine trees caused by the fungus Lecanosticta acicola, has been known in Slovenia since 2008 and in Croatia since 1975. Recent outbreaks in Slovenia prompted this study to compare L. acicola populations in these two... read more
Global population genomics of the forest pathogen Dothistroma septosporum reveal chromosome duplications in high dothistromin‐producing strains
17 April, 2019
Dothistroma needle blight is one of the most devastating pine tree diseases worldwide. New and emerging epidemics have been frequent over the last 25 years, particularly in the Northern Hemisphere, where they are in part associated with changing weather patterns. read more
Pinning down the period for increased risk of fire in the African savannas
16 April, 2019
Devastating wildfires are known to cause irreparable damage the world over. Studies conducted by CSIR earth observation experts revealed that determining the end of the growing season is important to be able to assess the risk of fire spread in the African savannas. read more
Effect of Sirex noctilio (Hymenoptera: Siricidae) attack density on Pinus sylvestris (Pinaceae) survival
5 April, 2019
Population density is often a critical factor in colonisation of trees by bark and wood-boring insects and may determine whether an exotic species is likely to establish and spread. In a manipulative field study, we investigated whether density of the attacking population... read more
Environmentally friendly methods for controlling pine pitch canker
5 April, 2019
Fusarium circinatum is a highly virulent invasive pathogen that causes the disease commonly known as pine pitch canker (PPC). On mature trees, the most common symptoms of PPC include resin bleeding, resinous cankers, wilting of needles and dieback. read more
Local antagonism and resource partitioning between two invasive pine plantation pests
19 March, 2019
The woodwasp Sirex noctilio Fabricius, native to Eurasia and North Africa, regularly co‐occurs with a North American origin Pissodes sp. on Pinus trees in South Africa. The nature of this co‐occurrence and potential impacts on either of... read more
One step closer to separating waste at source
19 March, 2019
Municipalities across South Africa are considering implementing separation of recyclable waste at source. A number of municipalities across South Africa used the first version of a CSIR-developed support tool to assess and compare the costs and benefits of different options... read more
Fieldwork To Understand The Emerging Ceratocystis Threat To Eucalyptus In South Africa
15 March, 2019
From 17-19 February, some members of the Ceratocystis team, Dr Irene Barnes, and TPCP students and Postdocs, Arista Fourie, Dr FeiFei Liu and Granny Hlongwane, went on a field trip to Kwambonambi, KwaZulu-Natal to observe the Ceratocystis infection on Eucalyptus hybrid clones... read more
Experts pinpoint eight unique lakes in SA
15 March, 2019
Eight South African lakes with unique characteristics have been identified in the course of the National Biodiversity Assessment 2018. Experts emphasise the need to protect these wetlands from environmental and other pressures that threaten to degrade them. read more
CSIR waste experts contribute to landmark regional waste report
27 February, 2019
Contributing to the landmark Africa Waste Management Outlook report is a feather in the cap for the CSIR. The Africa Waste Management Outlook report was launched during Sustainability Week earlier this month at the CSIR, in Pretoria. read more
Africa’s first Earth system model to provide African-derived projections of climate change
20 February, 2019
For the first time, the sixth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, due for release in 2019, will contain African-derived projections of future global climate change. The projections will be made possible by a new coupled climate model. read more
The plastid and mitochondrial genomes of Eucalyptus grandis
19 February, 2019
Land plant organellar genomes have significant impact on metabolism and adaptation, and as such, accurate assembly and annotation of plant organellar genomes is an important tool in understanding the evolutionary history and interactions between these genomes. read more
A Standardized Synthetic Eucalyptus Transcription Factor and Promoter Panel for Re-engineering Secondary Cell Wall Regulation in Biomass and Bioenergy Crops
1 February, 2019
Re-engineering of transcriptional networks regulating secondary cell wall formation may allow the improvement of plant biomass in widely grown plantation crops such as Eucalyptus. However, there is currently a scarcity of freely available standardized biological parts. read more
Ten new species of Calonectria from Indonesia and Vietnam
1 February, 2019
Vietnam and Indonesia have rapidly growing and extensive plantation forestry programs, especially of Acacia & spp. and Eucalyptusspp. As these plantations expand, the threat from pests and diseases also increases Calonectriaspecies are among those pathogens causing... read more
Teratosphaeria stem canker of Eucalyptus: two pathogens, one devastating disease
20 November, 2018
Teratosphaeria gauchensis and T. zuluensis are closely related fungi that cause Teratosphaeria (previously Coniothyrium) stem canker disease on Eucalyptus species propagated in plantations for commercial purposes. This disease is present in many countries... read more
Maternal environment regulates morphological and physiological traits in Eucalyptus grandis
31 October, 2018
The phenotype of a plant can be shaped by the biotic and abiotic conditions to which their parents are subjected. This phenotypic plasticity known as maternal environmental effect occurs regardless of the changes in the DNA sequences. read more
Ceratocystis wilt on Eucalyptus: first record from South Africa
2 June, 2018
Wilt and death of an E. grandi times E. urophyll a variety was recently observed in the Zululand region of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. read more
FABI celebrates 20 years of research excellence
19 February, 2018
The Forestry and Agricultural Biotechnology Institute (FABI) at the University of Pretoria (UP) turns 20 in 2018. Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Prof Cheryl de la Rey welcomed the audience of FABI staff, students, alumni and a host of international researchers and academic. read more
2nd edition of the Climate Risk and Vulnerability handbook
6 November, 2017
The 2nd edition of the Climate Risk and Vulnerability handbook was launched on 5 October 2017 at the CSIR 6th Biennial Conference in Pretoria. The handbook presents the latest available scientific knowledge on the nature of climate change and its implications for the region... read more
Evolution of polyketide synthesis in a Dothideomycete forest pathogen
8 August, 2017
Fungal secondary metabolites have many important biological roles and some, like the toxic polyketide aflatoxin, have been intensively studied at the genetic level. Complete sets of polyketide synthase (PKS) genes can now be identified in fungal pathogen... read more
Parasitoid assemblage associated with a North American pine weevil in South Africa
2 August, 2017
The weevil Pissodes sp. was first reported as an introduced pest on exotic Pinus spp. in South Africa in 1942. It is only recently that the native wasp Pycnetron pix Prinsloo was described from South Africa as a parasitoid of this weevil. We estimated the frequency... read more
Maternal effects on phenotype, resistance and the structuring of fungal communities in Eucalyptus grandis
20 June, 2017
The environmental experience of plants can modulate the development of the offspring and their interactions with other organisms. These effects, generally known as maternal effects, occur through seed provisioning and epigenetic modifications. read more
The unified framework for biological invasions: a forest fungal pathogen perspective
5 June, 2017
Biological invasions in forests are growing in number and importance globally. The best studied examples are those caused by plants and animals, including insects. In contrast, forest invasions caused by microbes, including fungi, have received much lower levels of attention... read more
Diversity, phylogeny and pathogenicity of Botryosphaeriaceae on non-native Eucalyptus grown in an urban environment: A case study
10 May, 2017
The Botryosphaeriaceae are opportunistic pathogens mostly of woody plants, including Eucalyptus. These fungi can cause cankers and die-back diseases on non-native Eucalyptus trees in South African plantations. Botryosphaeriaceae were isolated from diseased... read more
The balance of trade in alien species between South Africa and the rest of Africa
26 April, 2017
Alien organisms are not only introduced from one biogeographical region to another but also spread within regions. As South Africa shares land borders with six countries, multiple opportunities exist for the transfer of alien species between South Africa and other African countries... read more
A new Leptographium species from the roots of declining Pinus sylvestris in Switzerland
25 April, 2017
Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) trees have been declining in the Rhône valley, Switzerland, for almost three decades. In an assessment of the role of fungi in this syndrome, the dominant fungus isolated from stained roots was a Leptographium species, morphologically similar... read more
Classical biological control of insect pests of trees: facts and figures
27 March, 2017
Classical biological control (CBC) is the introduction of a natural enemy of exotic origin to control a pest, usually also exotic, aiming at permanent control of the pest. CBC has been carried out widely over a variety of target organisms, but most commonly against insects... read more
Novel and co-evolved associations between insects and microorganisms as drivers of forest pestilence
23 March, 2017
Abstract Some of the most devastating diseases of trees involve associations between forest insects and microorganisms. Although a small number of native insect-microorganism symbioses can cause tree mortality, the majority of associations with tree health implications involve... read more
Planted forest health: The need for a global strategy
23 March, 2017
Several key tree genera are used in planted forests worldwide, and these represent valuable global resources. Planted forests are increasingly threatened by insects and microbial pathogens, which are introduced accidentally and/or have adapted to new host trees. Globalization has... read more
Antifungal actinomycetes associated with the pine bark beetle, Orthotomicus erosus, in South Africa
14 February, 2017
Actinomycete bacteria are often associated with insects that have a mutualistic association with fungi. These bacteria are believed to be important to this insect-fungus association as they produce antibiotics that exclude other saprophytic fungi from the immediate environment. read more
Botrytis eucalypti, a novel species isolated from diseased Eucalyptus seedlings in South China
21 October, 2016
Eucalyptus has become a preferred species for the production of industrial products and also for the protection of natural forests in South China. Many diseases affect these trees, both on plantations and in nurseries read more
Six recently recorded Australian insects associated with Eucalyptus in South Africa
11 October, 2016
The increased movement of goods and pathways to transport these goods around the world, combined with the homogenisation of cultivated areas has resulted in an increase in insect movement and establishment. read more
Why IUFRO really matters to tropical forestry research
11 October, 2016
I took on the presidency of the International Union of Forestry Research Organisations (IUFRO), in October 2014, having the honor to follow in the footsteps of some great leaders in forestry research. In my acceptance speech, I committed to promoting a number of key goals.... read more
Precipitation, not air temperature, drives functional responses of trees in semi-arid ecosystems
9 October, 2016
Model scenarios of climate change predict that warming & drought will occur simultaneously in the future in many regions. The capacity of woody species to modify their physiology & morphology in response to environmental conditions is widely recognized,... read more
Securing African forests for future drier climates
5 October, 2016
Increasing incidences of drought-induced tree mortality are being recorded worldwide, including Africa. African forests cover a significant proportion of the continent, which implies that African forest sustainability is threatened from a climate-change perspective.  read more
Ecology & population structure of a tree wound-infecting fungus in a native SA forest environment
5 October, 2016
Ceratocystis tsitsikammensis was first isolated from bark harvesting wounds on two indigenous tree species in the Afromontane forests of the Western Cape Province of South Africa. Inoculation studies indicated that it is a potential pathogen of nativeRapanea melanophloeos trees. read more
Neotypification of Dothistroma septosporum and epitypification of D. pini, causal agents of Dothistroma needle blight of pine
5 October, 2016
Dothistroma needle blight (DNB) is one of the most devastating needle diseases on Pinus spp. worldwide. Ever since the description of the causal agent of the disease in Europe in 1911 as Cytosporina septospora, & independently in the USA in 1941 as Dothistroma pini, there... read more
Assessment of beetle diversity, community composition and potential threats to forestry using kairomone-baited traps
29 August, 2016
Traps designed to capture insects during normal movement/dispersal, or via attraction to non-specific (plant) volatile lures, yield by-catch that carries valuable information about patterns of community diversity and composition. In order to identify potential native/introduced pests and... read more
Diseases on Eucalyptus species in Zimbabwean plantations and woodlots
14 May, 2015
Zimbabwe embarked on planting Eucalyptus species in the early 1900s. Based on a robust breeding programme, it has become a major source of seed for other countries in and outside Africa. read more
Comparative interrogation of the developing xylem transcriptomes of two wood-forming species: Populus trichocarpa and Eucalyptus grandis
16 February, 2015
Wood formation is a complex developmental process governed by genetic and environmental stimuli. Populus and Eucalyptus are fast-growing, high-yielding tree genera that represent ecologically and economically important species... read more
Genomic patterns of species diversity and divergence in Eucalyptus
16 February, 2015
We examined genome-wide patterns of DNA sequence diversity and divergence among six species of the important tree genusEucalyptus and investigated their relationship with genomic architecture. read more
Novel taxa in the Fusarium fujikuroi species complex from Pinus spp.
12 February, 2015
The pitch canker pathogen Fusarium circinatum has caused devastation to Pinus spp. in natural forests and non-natives in commercially managed plantations. This has drawn attention to the potential importance of Fusarium species as... read more
New species, hyper-diversity and potential importance of Calonectria spp. from Eucalyptus in South China
12 February, 2015
Plantation forestry is expanding rapidly in China to meet an increasing demand for wood and pulp products globally. Fungal pathogens including species of Calonectria represent a serious threat to the growth and sustainability of this industry. read more
FABI-ICFR-Industry alliance publishes a special issue of Southern Forests
17 October, 2014
The latest issue of Southern Forests: a Journal of Forest Science, focuses on the management of Fusarium circinatum in South African pine nurseries and plantations. The fungus causes serious disease of seedlings and mature trees of the... read more
Chemical signatures affecting host choice in the Eucalyptus herbivore, Gonipterus sp. (Curculionidae: Coleoptera)
17 October, 2014
It is well known that herbivorous insects respond to host plant volatiles. Yet details of how these insects perceive the complex profile of volatiles from different potential host plants have not been studied for most insects. Gonipterus spp. are important... read more
New pest of Eucalyptus detected in South Africa
8 October, 2014
In May this year symptoms of a previously unreported insect pest was detected on Eucalyptus in Midrand, Gauteng. While the symptoms appeared similar to those of some Ophelimus species, no gall formers emerged in captivity until... read more
New publication on biological agent for Leptocybe invasa
19 August, 2014
A new publication from FABI that appeared this week on the biological agent for Leptocybe invasa. This study provides the first basic data on the biology of the ectoparasitoid S. neseri, which was essential to understand before its application... read more
Cossid moth detected in KwaZulu-Natal
4 February, 2014
The cossid moth, Coryphodema tristis, has recently been detected in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands area where it is infesting Eucalyptus nitens. Native to South Africa, the cossid moth was first detected infesting E. nitens in 2004, but this is the first report of... read more
Major International Forestry Award to FABI researcher
4 February, 2014
Prof Jolanda Roux (FABI and Dept of Microbiology and Plant Pathology, UP) will receive the IUFRO SCIENTIFIC ACHIEVEMENT AWARD at the next IUFRO World Congress to be held in Salt Lake City, USA, later this year. read more
Established and new technologies reduce increasing pest and pathogen threats to Eucalypt plantations
10 December, 2013
Plantation forestry based on Eucalyptus spp. has grown dramatically during the past 100 years, mainly in the tropics and southern hemisphere where these trees are non-native. Early plantations were affected by pests and pathogens, although damage was generally... read more
Pruning quality affects infection of Acacia mangium and A. crassicarpa by Ceratocystis acaciivora and Lasiodiplodia theobromae
10 December, 2013
Pruning (singling) is a common silvicultural practice in commercial Acacia plantations because these trees tend to have multiple stems. The wounds resulting from pruning are susceptible to infection by pathogens. Ceratocystis acaciivora and Lasiodiplodia... read more
Botryosphaeriaceae associated with Pterocarpus angolensis (kiaat) in South Africa
10 December, 2013

There have been several recent reports of Pterocarpus angolensis (kiaat) trees dying in South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe, where this tree is used in traditional medicine and is a valuable source of timber for woodcarving and furniture. A survey of material... read more

Three new Ceratocystis species and evidence for geographic differentiation of the genus in Africa
10 December, 2013
The emergence of wattle wilt disease on nonnative Acacia mearnsii trees in Africa, caused by the indigenous
fungus Ceratocystis albifundus, has highlighted a need to better understand the diversity, ecology and distribution of Ceratocystis species in... read more
Ceratocystis species, including two new taxa, from Eucalyptus trees in South Africa
10 December, 2013
The ascomycete genus Ceratocystis (Microascales, Ceratocystidaceae) includes important fungal pathogens of trees, including Eucalyptus species. Ceratocystis species and their Thielaviopsis asexual states are typically associated with insects, such as nitidulid... read more
Identification of fungal pathogens occurring in eucalypt and pine plantations in Zambia by comparing DNA sequences
10 December, 2013
Commercial forestry plantations in Zambia were initiated during the 1960s. Since then, very little attention has been given to diseases that impact negatively on the production of these plantations. Recent field surveys have highlighted the occurrence and impact... read more
A serious canker disease caused by Immersiporthe knoxdaviesiana gen. et sp. nov. (Cryphonectriaceae) on native Rapanea melanophloeos in South Africa
10 December, 2013
Recent disease surveys in the Western Cape province of South Africa have revealed a previously unknown and serious stem canker disease on native Rapanea melanophloeos (Myrsinaceae, Ericales) trees. Cankers commonly result in the death of branches or entire stems.... read more
High population diversity and increasing importance of the Eucalyptus stem canker pathogen, Teratosphaeria zuluensis, in South China
10 December, 2013
Coniothyrium stem canker, caused by Teratosphaeria zuluensis, is one of the most important diseases of
plantation-grown Eucalyptus trees in tropical and subtropical areas of the world. Previous research on the
population structure of T. zuluensis in... read more
Eucalyptus leaf beetle Paropsisterna selmani (Chrysomelidae: Paropsini)
13 November, 2013
If this introduced Eucalyptus pest in Ireland follows the same trend as other Eucalyptus pests, it might start moving around the world soon. Something to look out for. read more
Volumes and Efficiencies of Water-use within selected indigenous and introduced tree species in SA
11 November, 2013
South African indigenous forests provide goods and services which are recognised as valuable natural capital, and are well documented. However, the limited extent of these forests has forced South Africa to accelerate the expansion of its own plantation forest... read more
Forests, rangelands and climate change in southern Africa - Forests and Climate Change Working Paper No. 12.
29 October, 2013
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), in collaboration with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in South Africa and with the support of the Government of Belgium, released a forests and climate change working paper, titled... read more
Communicating climate information for decision-making - SADC Climate Change Project
29 October, 2013
The USAID-funded project was designed to build capacity among the SADC member states in understanding information on climate impact and risk in the context of early-warning strategies and planning. The central product of this project was a handbook entitled... read more
Release of biological control for the Eucalyptus bronze bug
22 October, 2013
On 11th of October Cleruchoides noackae, a biological control agent for the Eucalyptus bronze bug, Thaumastocoris peregrinus, was released simultaneously in Limpopo, around the Tzaneen area, in Kwazulu-Natal... read more
Biological control agent for Thaumastocoris peregrinus to be released in South Africa
26 August, 2013
The Tree Protection Co-­‐operative Programme (TPCP) based at FABI has recently received permission from the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) and the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) to release the parasitic wasp... read more
Update on Glycaspis brimblecombei (red gum lerp psyllid)
15 August, 2013
The red gum lerp pysllid, Glycaspis brimblecombei, is a pest of Eucalyptus species that has spread from Australia into many Eucalyptus growing countries, where it can cause substantial losses. This insect was first... read more
One year of releasing Selitrichodes neseri: biocontrol agent for Leptocybe invasa
6 August, 2013
It has been about one year since the first releases of Selitrichodes neseri, biological control agent for Leptocybe invasa. This minute parasitic wasp was first released in the Zululand region in July 2012 after about two years of intensive research at... read more
Official scientific report of Myrtle rust in Africa
4 July, 2013
A few weeks ago we reported the first observation of Myrtle rust in Africa, where it occurred on an ornamental Myrtus communis plant in KwaZulu-Natal. This is the rust that also poses a potential threat to other members of the Myrtaceae such as... read more
Myrtle / Eucalyptus rust now in South Africa!
20 June, 2013
Researchers at FABI this week confirmed the presence of the myrtle rust pathogen, Puccinia psidii, in South Africa. The possible presence of the pathogen was brought to our attention by an alert forester, Marcel Verleur of Sappi, who spotted a diseased Myrtus... read more
Update on releases of Selitrichodes neseri, biocontrol agent for Leptocybe invasa
2 April, 2013
Releases of Selitrichodes neseri in Eucalyptus plantations in South Africa continue, with over 4 000 female wasps released at over 200 sites to date. These releases have focused on the regions with the highest infestation of Leptocybe invasa, namely... read more
Biocontrol agent for eucalyptus gall wasp released
20 November, 2012
It was with great excitement that we found the first Selitrichodes neseri wasp emerging from Leptocybe-infested material collected in the field. This material was collected from a site in Mtunzini, Zululand, where S. neseri was released in September this year. read more
Pest and disease threats accelerating
17 September, 2012
The following article was published in the June 2012 issue of SA Forestry Magazine. It is a good summary of some of the ideas raised and reports given at the annual TPCP meeting in May 2012. read more
Detection of large-scale landscape changes in and around the Kruger National Park
15 August, 2012
The Carnegie Airborne Observatory (CAO) - an integrated airborne hyperspectral and light detection and ranging (LiDAR) system based at Stanford University in the United States - recently completed a third mission to the Kruger National Park (KNP) in South... read more
Researchers one step closer to providing a country-wide nitrogen map for southern Africa
13 August, 2012
Remote sensing specialists are standing by to capitalise on the launch of the European Space Agency's (ESA) Sentinel-2 Earth observation satellite in 2013, as that will, for the first time, enable them to develop a nitrogen map for southern Africa. read more
Biological control agent for Leptocybe invasa released
30 July, 2012
July 25 was an important day for forest protection in South Africa, as it marked the first release of Selitrichodes   neseri, the biological control agent for the eucalyptus gall wasp, Leptocybe invasa. Leptocybe invasa is one of the most devastating... read more
New pest of Eucalyptus, Glycaspis brimblecombei, in South Africa
27 July, 2012
A new invasive insect on Eucalyptus was recently detected in the Pretoria area by Prof. Stefan Neser. Although the identity must still be confirmed, we are almost certain that this insect is the red gum lerp psyllid, Glycaspis brimblecombei. This insect is a... read more
Application of Plant Breeders’ Rights (PBR) for CSIR GxN2107
24 July, 2012
The submission of the application for Plant Breeders' Rights for the CSIR eucalypt clone GxN2107 is the first of its kind in South Africa as no applications for forest tree species have been submitted and no guidelines have been drafted before.  The advantage... read more
Chemical and Cryo-methods for assessing hardwood pulp fibre ultrastructure
24 July, 2012
Accurate imaging and analysis of the fibre wall ultrastructure depends extensively on the sample preparation method used (Chinga-Carrasco, 2010). Various techniques and methods are available for sample preparation but their use is limited by the sensitivity to... read more
Understanding our natural resources at the nano-scale for improved utilisation
24 July, 2012
Understanding the complex biological ultrastructure of our natural resources at the nano-scale is fundamental to improve pulping processes, augment product development, problem solve and enhance fibre utilisation. A suite of sample preparation and microscopy... read more
Selitrichodes release
16 July, 2012
Since hearing that we have permission to release Selitrichodes neseri, a potential biological control agent for Leptocybe invasa, we have been inundated with requests to release the wasp in different areas. We are working very hard to build up populations of the... read more
Why a mild-mannered American beetle has become a tree killer in Asia
9 February, 2012
The story of the how the red turpentine beetle and its fungus turned aggressive after introduction into a new environment. Several researchers from FABI are collaborating with Americans and Chinese scientists to better our understanding of this phenomenon. read more
Disease Warning – Puccinia psidii
6 February, 2012
Foresters in South Africa have been made conscious about Eucalyptus rust since the 1990's, and the pathogenPuccinia psidii has been feared in Australia ever since it first started causing disease on Eucalyptus in South America in the... read more
Large scale die-off of an Iconic South African Tree – Euphorbia Ingens
6 February, 2012
Unexplained die-off of Euphorbia ingens (Candelabra, Naboom or Mokgoto) in the Limpopo Province (Fig. 1) has captured the attention of researchers associated with the CTHB. Results from research on this phenomenon suggest that it is the product of a complex interaction between... read more
Gonipterus Scutellatus
6 February, 2012
Gonipterus scutellatus, the Eucalyptus snout beetle, was first noted into South Africa in 1916 in Cape Town and by 1929 it had spread throughout eucalypt growing areas in South Africa. When initially reported it was causing severe damage, especially on E. globules and E. viminalis species but has... read more
Cellulose Fibril Aggregation Studies of Eucalyptus Dissolving Pulps Using Atomic Force Microscopy
17 November, 2011
The work presented will report on the use of AFM to study the CFA characteristics of dissolving pulp of a clone of Eucalyptus grown in compartments with contrasting growth rates (low and high), at different stages of the pulping process (solid wood, unbleached [raw] and fully bleached) to... read more
Identification of PCR-base markers linked to wood splitting in Eucalyptus Grandis
17 November, 2011
Wood splitting is a defect in eucalyptus which results in considerable losses when converting logs to solid wood products. Commonly in forestry, molecular markers are identified through studying pedigrees from a single cross. This limits the application of these markers to that population. The... read more
Pest and disease threats to plantation forestry in South Africa
17 November, 2011
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Unexplored Ophiostomatoid Fungal Diversity in South Africa
16 November, 2011
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A fungus from Africa threatens our Eucalyptus plantations
16 November, 2011
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Diversity and Evolution of Fusarium species in the Gibberella Fujikuroi Complex
16 November, 2011
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Genome sequence of Pantoea ananatis – a Eucalyptus pathogen
16 November, 2011
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UP scientists unravel hidden plant pathogenic fungi
16 November, 2011
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Comparison of the biophysical and economic water-use efficiencies of indigenous and introduced forests in South Africa
6 June, 2011
Water resources in many catchments in South Africa (SA) are over committed and water is projected to become scarcer. The impacts of plantation forestry on water resources in SA are well known and legislation limits further afforestation. Nevertheless demands for wood continue to grow. A challenge... read more
Measurement of Stickies (Macro, Micro and Potential Secondary Stickies)
3 January, 2011
Contaminants from synthetic polymers such as plastics, coatings, adhesives and waxes remain one of the biggest challenges for papermakers using recovered fibre. These contaminants are called "stickies" because they stick to paper machine felts and wires leading to operating problems,... read more
A technique to identify annual growth rings in Eucalyptus grandis using annual measurements of diameter at breast height and gamma ray densitometry
7 June, 2010
A technique was developed to identify annual growth rings in E. grandis using a combination of annual measurements of diameter at breast height (DBH) from permanent sample plot (PSP) datasets and bark-pith density profiles. By assessing the pattern of radial variation in wood density within the... read more
South African risk and vulnerability atlas
5 April, 2010
The South African Risk and Vulnerability Atlas was conceived and designed with the intent of providing up to date information for key sectors to support strategy development in the areas of risk and vulnerability. This volume presents a selection of such information, translated to communicate key... read more
Acid bi-sulphite pulping effects on hardwoods and a softwood revealed by atomic force microscopy
7 December, 2009
Wood fibres are the raw material used in the production of dissolving pulp for the manufacture of cellulose derivatives such as viscose and cellulose acetate. At the microscopic level, the wood cell wall is organised in layers with different thicknesses and proportions of lignin and... read more
Comparison of deterministically predicted genetic gains with those realised in a South African Eucalyptus grandis breeding program
8 June, 2009
Tree breeders attempt to predict the genetic gains that are likely to be achieved through selection and breeding of new generations, using stochastic or deterministic modelling. There are many factors that may cause a discrepancy between the predicted and realised genetic gains. Often the... read more
Medium resolution image fusion, does it enhance forest structure assessment
7 July, 2008
This research explored the potential benefits of fusing optical and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) medium resolution satellite-borne sensor data for forest structural assessment. Image fusion was applied as a means of retaining disparate data features relevant to modeling and mapping of... read more