A spatial simulation model to explore the potential impact of gene drives as a control on invasive wasps
conference contributionposted on 17.09.2019 by David O'Sullivan, George Perry, Phil Lester
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We present a simple simulation model of the potential effects of a possible gene drive control on invasive wasps in the upper South Island of Aotearoa New Zealand. The aim of the model is to explore the potential spatial dynamics of such a control, in particular, interactions between the distribution of available favourable habitat for wasps, and estimates of their spatial dispersal characteristics. Preliminary results suggest that even in the absence of an evolutionary response from targetted wasps eradication is unlikely, and that the main determinant of long term abun-
dance of genetically modied strains in the wild population are overall population growth rates. However, the spatial characteristics of wasp behaviour may have important implications for local eradications and their consequent impact on native wildlife populations.