With more than 15,000 miles of annual road travel anticipated for each of our African partners on the African Cassava Whitefly Project (ACWP), the new Project vehicles being supplied for field work see the teams moving into top gear.
Pictured here is the first vehicle, which was delivered to the team at the National Crops Resources Research Institute (NaCRRI), Uganda. Similar vehicles are being supplied to the teams at the Department of Agricultural Research Services (DARS), Malawi, and Mikocheni Agricultural Research Institute (MARI), Tanzania. All vehicles are for exclusive Project use, for team members and visiting scientists from partner organisations.
One of the major studies requiring the teams to be on the road is the landscape ecological approach to understanding the superabundance of whiteflies proposed by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia. This study will involve a transect of field sites stretching from Uganda to coastal Tanzania with 10 intensive study sites and a selection of lighter touch sites that will require regular visits and routine maintenance. Other Project Aims will cover more area through field work.
ACWP African partners are truly in the driving seat with these robust, off-road vehicles which provide safer travel as our teams cover thousands of square miles, largely on roads and tracks without tarmac, whilst their durability and practicality reduce risks and logistical challenges to ensure the success of the fieldwork. The wheels are most definitely in motion for the African Cassava Whitefly Project!