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Confidence in stable isotopes to verify a high risk pest incursion as foreign or NZ established

Biosecurity outcome

  • Stable isotope (SI) signatures of origin will aid MPI decisions on the level of response needed for a new high risk, post-border pest detection, by providing supporting evidence of a locally breeding population or fresh overseas arrival.
  • The first evidence of whether the plant part (fruit, leaf, sap, wood) used for insect growth, and acquisition of its SI signature, influences use of that data

Science outcome

A novel statistically-based method of landscape isotope (isoscape) data to distinguish the origins of insects will be generated

Key end users/stakeholders

Implementation: Oritain & MPI (PHEL) have agreed there is potential for developing a Service Level Agreement (SLA) where Oritain become MPI’s single point of contact for determining origins of post-border high risk detections. Oritain will check off a set of criteria to determine adherence to their own requirements for providing the service.  If that is all workable, Oritain will develop the SLA with MPI, QUT, Otago and LU, and then incorporate the technology and available reference data into their existing systems and business model. Technology hand-over anticipated in 2020.