Addressing golden apple snails needs team effort

Scientists involved in rice production are now challenged to address an incursion of the golden apple snail (GAS). Although it is not serious in nature, control measures need to be put in place and assessed for its effectiveness.

Cultural control has been encouraged to minimize its spread.

This includes hand picking snails and nested-eggs and setting up net traps to catch and crush them.

In PNG, golden apple snails are not a major concern unlike countries like Philippines and Malaysia.

Research shows that the Philippines government spends about 1.2 billion US dollars annually, to minimise the GAS.

The Pomacea canaliculata and P. maculata species are causing damage in bigger paddy-rice producing countries in South East Asia and elsewhere. Studies show that using the direct seed planting method is more vulnerable than transplanting rice.

A video conference hosted at NARI in June, 2021 by Dr Ravindra Chandra Joshi, an international consultant on invasive apple snails, suggested that one way of minimising the invasion of GAS is through regional and international research collaborations.

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