SUPPLEMENTARY MATERIAL for ROBIN M. GIBLIN - DAVIS AND AMY L. RODA − Real Time Internet Invasive Pest Identification Training: A Case Study with Rhynchophorus Weevils

Robin M. Giblin-Davis

Abstract


Early detection of potentially invasive pests is critical to avert significant economic and environmental damage that may result from their successful introduction and establishment in the U.S. Recent advances in affordable USB (universal serial bus) compliant digital microscope cameras and internet platforms for disseminating information in real time have created the potential for enhanced training for insect pest identification. Using the palm weevil genus Rhynchophorus as a test group, we conducted real time training demonstrations which suggested that remote identification training is possible with the U.S. government internet - based portal “FoodShield” which employs Adobe Connect soft ware, along with an open conference call line to reduce audio feedback. A training module was developed employing easy to use keys with photographs of diagnostic characters for species of Rhynchophorus that were distributed with an observation kit (contain ing image capture software, a digital microscope, a stand, and a specimen holder) to remote participants along with number - coded but unidentified voucher specimens of R. cruentatus , R. palmarum and R. ferrugineus prior to the training evaluations. The scre en - sharing features of the portal allowed each test participant to project back images of diagnostic features of their unknowns for confirmation that they were correctly identifying their voucher specimens.


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