Target and agent selection
Several different schemes exist on how to prioritize targets for weed biocontrol and their respective agents. This session will encourage presentations covering new methods for prioritization as well as examples where existing schemes and tools have been used successfully. This could also include climate and genetic matching.
Novel methods to determine efficacy and environmental safety of agents
This session will consider presentations that look at new ways in determining the efficacy of biocontrol agents and their environmental safety, including behavioural studies, the role of chemical ecology, modelling, retrospective studies, food-web analysis, host-agent biotype variation and the –omics field. Presentations should demonstrate how these new methods can help to improve and be realistically integrated in existing pre-release studies.
Making classical biological control more predictive: moving from ecological to evolutionary processes
This session will address aspects such as the evolability of biocontrol agents to novel abiotic and biotic selection pressures, adaption of the target host populations to the biological control agent, and possible outcomes of plant-antagonist interactions under climate change.
Regulations for agent release and access to genetic resources
This session should highlight current developments in regulations for the importation and release of BC organisms, and especially highlight cases where regulations recently changed or are being developed. The session will also cover recent experiences pertaining to the access of genetic resources as influenced by the Nagoya Protocol and highlight potential approaches specific to classical weed biocontrol.
Post-release monitoring and evaluation
This session will cover post-release monitoring and evaluation of agent establishment, dispersal, impact on the target, non-target attack and impacts, etc. Case studies as well as new schemes will be invited for presentation within this session.
Social and economic assessments of biological control
Social and economic aspects of classical biological control have become more important in recent years. This session could cover socio-economic impacts of the target weed, including potential conflics of interest, but also socio-economic assessments of successful biocontrol projects.
Integrated Weed Management and restoration
Biological control by itself – even if very successful – is unlikely to lead to the restoration of ecosystems prior to invasion. This session will consider examples where biological control of weeds (classical and/or augmentative) is successfully integrated with other management techniques including restoration or leading to restoration.
Opportunities and constraints for classical weed biocontrol in developing countries
The implementation of classical weed biocontrol in developing countries may be associated with specific opportunities but also constraints. This session is looking for case studies of successful or unsuccessful weed biocontrol projects in the developing world, presentations describing patterns or offering new perspectives.
Opportunities and constraints for classical weed biocontrol in developed countries
Taking advantage of the fact that the XV ISBCW is being hosted in Switzerland and considering that classical biocontrol of weeds is a neglected tool in managing alien invasive weeds in Europe, we would like to encourage presentations talking about the specific opportunities and constraints that CBC of weeds faces in Europe and other developed regions/countries without a long history of weed biocontrol.
This session is being organised by the International Bioherbicide Group. It will cover recent developments in the science and commercialisation of plant pathogens and their metabolites as biological herbicides. There will be a focus on how the hurdles facing the wide-scale use of plant pathogens as bioherbicides may be overcome.