Scientific context and aims
Characterizing the biology of intrusive/pest mites and their adaptation potential is one of the objectives of the researches led in CBGP.
In this purpose, the SEPA platform (greenhouse, breeding and phenotyping) aims at producing and phenotyping, under controlled conditions, a diversity of biological models. At present, the main studied models at SEPA are Ostrinia nubilalis (European corn worm), Harmonia axyridis (Harlequin ladybird), Drosophila suzukii (Spotted-wing drosophila), Schistocerca gregaria (Desert locust) and acarids of genus Tetranychus.
Activities and main available equipment
The platform consists of 13 climatic rooms (3 to 5 m2 each) and 6 portable climatic chambers. These various structures allow breeding and experiment on arthropods at controlled temperature, lighting and humidity. We also have equipment specially dedicated to phenotyping: thermoregulated fridges, video-tracking, balances, binocular microscopes. A greenhouse allows the production of plant material for the studied plant-eating insects.
Functioning and operating budget
The platform is available for every potential user in CBGP and, additionally, for external collaborators on common projects. It is at present used within the framework of about ten research projects. Besides CBGP financial support, users pay an annual fee and an additional contribution according to the number of used structures. The platform has its own operating budget mainly fed by the project leaders.