Moths are insects that a lot of people are scared of. They are also known to eat and destroy crops and ruin harvests. To reduce these losses, scientists have come up with a plan.
The Diamond Back moth is a huge moth that ruins tons of harvests and leads to around 5 billion dollars of losses every single year. Teams of researchers have been hired to take care of this issue and try to suppress the population of the Diamond Back moth.
To do so, a genetically modified Diamond Back moth has been created which will help reduce the population of moths that can ruin the harvest. These moths have just recently been put out into the wild.
The process that will take place will be that the moths that have been released will mate with female moths and the offspring will not be able to survive beyond the caterpillar age, which will eventually begin to lessen the population of moths. However, the catch is that only the female offspring will die, the male offspring will survive and mate with females again to breed offspring in which the female moth dies. When this continues for a while, the species will begin to suppress and they will be much less in number than before. However, it cannot completely erase the Diamond Back moth as the gene will rectify after a few generations.
This technique of creating sterile insects was created back in the 1950s. Now with updated technology and vast research, scientists have used a similar technique to reduce or suppress the population of the Diamond Back moth, so it does not harm or ruin the crops leading to huge losses.
Before the modified moths were released in the wild, they were marked on their bodies with fluorescent powder so they could easily be identified. This then allowed the team of researchers to observe the behavior of the moths and the way they interacted with their community.
They saw the released male moths behaved in the same manner as other male moths do in terms of survival and distance traveled, and this then helped their plan for insect suppression move forward.
However, one thing to note is that when a species is genetically modified, there is always a concern about the impact it will have on the environment.