Reaction diffusion model of the screwworm fly sterile release barrier zone.
Matlock, Robert1, Haile, Danel2, 1 Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA2 US Department of Agriculture, Panama City, Panama
ABSTRACT- The screwworm fly, Cochliomyia hominivorax (Calliphoridae), is a Diperan parasite of mammals that has been eradicated from the US, Mexico and northern Central America by the sterile insect release method through the collaborative efforts of the US Department of Agriculture and the governments of Mexico and the seven Central American republics. Currently, the USDA and the Panamanian Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development (MIDA) release sterilized screwworm flies from aircraft twice weekly between the Panama Canal and the Colombian Border, thus maintaining a permanent barrier to screwworm reintroduction from South America. A reaction-diffusion equation model of this barrier zone and parameter estimates derived from 13 mark-recapture data sets for sterile and fertile screwworm flies will be presented. The model results suggest that the costs of maintaining the barrier zone could be reduced by modifying the geographical pattern of sterile fly release without compromising the security of the barrier. Although reaction-diffusion models have been applied to the sterile insect release method previously, the results presented here constitute the most extensive attempt to date to link models with field data from a sterile insect release control program.
Key words: reaction-diffusion, sterile insect release method, model, screwworm
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