HARPER Adams University has secured £180,000 to fund two new PhD studentships.
The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and partners have awarded the money through the Industrial CASE Studentships scheme.
Professor Leather, Professor of Entomology at Harper Adams will work alongside partners from BCP Certis Ltd and the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust on the projects, entitled ‘Novel approaches to the production of mass-reared beneficial Arthropods’ and ‘Influence of Syngamus tracheae on pheasant populations’.
Professor Leather said: “These two four-year research projects will begin on October 1, 2013 and conclude on September 30, 2017.
“The first aims to help producers of glasshouse crops get better and more cost-effective biological control of pests by developing artificial diets for the bio-control agents.
“By eliminating the need for costly rearing methods for natural predators, BCP Certis who are part-funding the studentship, will be able produce greater numbers of predators for glasshouse crops producers more quickly and less expensively
“The second project aims to understand the relationship between a common parasitic worm of lowland game birds and lack of breeding success.
“Once these factors are understood, the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, who are part-funding the studentship will be able to advise their members and other landowners on the best way to keep their pheasants and partridges healthy and also other bird species.”
These studentships are training grants that provide students with a challenging research training experience, allowing bioscience graduates to undertake research, leading to a PhD, within the context of collaboration between academic and partner organisations.