The national and international press that the Disease, Drones and Dogs has brought to iDC has resulted inquiries to use the systems for other crop pests in nurseries as well as detection of larger invasive pest such as pythons and invasive lizards in the everglades.
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The Detector dogs will be certified by FIU Forensics Institute, Detector Dog certifications testing group used to validate the accuracy of the detector dog and handler team to locate the presence of the Laurel wilt fungus.
This method of early detection gives the farmer at least 3 weeks faster notice over any other current practice that another outbreak is pending. The dogs are routinely detecting the fungus in trees 2-3 weeks before the wilt can be detected by any other method. But the spreading of the chipped infected wood will prevent that advantage in time, cost in removal/production and cost of the containment.
Preliminary tests have demonstrated that if the tilt is applied early in the fungal infection (before the wilt symptoms are evident) there is a 60% chance that the tree can be saved provided other sanitation methods are implemented (removing fully enraged trees entirely and not spreading infected limbs or chipped wood in the grove so the is a resulting in the removal of the infected trees and then trenching or infusion with a fungicide to prevent the spread of the fungus through root grafting.
Once the spread is pinpointed, it is recommended to the farmer that a minimum of two rows around any tree or trees where the dogs have verified the spread need to be immediately treated with Tilt the approved fungicide.
Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to identify suspect trees, then detection dogs to identify the perimeter of the spread of the infected trees, and finally a DNA verification of the presence of the Laurel Wilt fungus.