FIRE BLIGHT IN NORWAY: A REVIEW OF STRATEGIES AND CONTROL MEASURES FROM 1986 TO 2016

A. Sletten, V. Talgø, T. Rafoss, N.S. Melbøe

Abstract


Fire blight, caused by Erwinia amylovora, was detected for the first time in Norway in 1986. It was a limited outbreak on the south-western coast, only on ornamentals, and particularly on Cotoneaster spp. An action group handling the eradication and containment of the disease was quickly established. Comprehensive statutory powers and resources were given by the government to do surveys and eradicate diseased or symptomless but highly susceptible plant species from contaminated areas. These activities have likely restricted fire blight to the western and southern coastal areas. Eastern and northern parts of Norway are considered free from fire blight. The disease has not been observed in important fruitgrowing areas. Uncontrolled movement of beehives from areas with fire blight to areas free from the disease has contributed to its introduction to new areas. From 1969 to 2016 import of most host plants of E. amylovora from countries with fire blight was prohibited. A yearly program for annual surveys in parts of the country with commercial fruit-growing and nurseries, using digital maps on internet connected tablets with GPS and software for in situ registrations, proved to be an efficient method for discovering new outbreaks at an early stage, and to start eradication and thus limit further spread.

Keywords


Erwinia amylovora; eradication; ornamental hosts; digital mapping

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4454/jpp.v99i0.3921

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