Aligned research

Better Border Biosecurity (B3)

B3 is a multi-partner, cooperative science collaboration that researches ways to reduce the entry and establishment of new plant pests and diseases in New Zealand. B3 is fully aligned to the BioH Challenge. The two entities have a shared vision to deliver biosecurity outcomes for New Zealand. The Challenge provides highlevel leadership across the broader biosecurity spectrum, linking biosecurity and biodiversity impacts, while B3 provides a single point of access for niche science solutions focused on plant protection and border biosecurity.

B3’s Crown Research Institute partners aligned their Strategic Science Investment Fund (SSIF) investment in B3 with the BioH Challenge from its inception in December 2014.

Since then B3 has been working closely with the BioH Challenge to cultivate synergies, including:

  • integration of the Challenge’s Intermediate Outcomes into a refreshed B3 Strategy
  • direct alignment of research activity and cross-learning, such as an integrated platform for biosecurity through eDNA sequencing (Plant & Food Research), Māori responses to biosecurity incursions (Plant & Food Research), and the susceptibility of taonga plants to myrtle rust (Scion)
  • a joint approach to support important biosecurity initiatives such as the Port of Tauranga Biosecurity Operational Excellence site, and a Scion-led, MBIEfunded ‘Biosecurity Toolkit for the Urban Environment’ research programme
  • regular interaction between B3, the BioHeritage Challenge and the Bio-Protection Research Centre
  • combined meetings with end-users, such as MPI, to align national biosecurity impacts
  • joint development of Biosecurity 2025 symposium at the Crazy & Ambitious conference.
Panel: Biosecurity: 2025 and beyond

Chair: David Teulon (Plant & Food Research)
Panellists: Bill Dyck (Forest Owners Association), Chris Morley (DairyNZ), Richard Bowman (Environment Southland), Richard Palmer (Horticulture NZ), Thomas Malcolm (Te Tira Whakamātaki, Māori Biosecurity Network), Veronica Herrera (MPI), Alan Ross (DOC)

Protecting New Zealand’s primary sector from plant pests: a toolkit for the urban environment Dr Tara Strand, Scion

This MBIE-funded programme is aligned with the BioHeritage Challenge and is also part of the B3 (Better Border Biosecurity) collaboration. It is designed to deliver a stepchange in the effectiveness of insect eradication programmes in urban environments in order to protect New Zealand’s primary industries.

Highlights of the programme include:

  • progress towards a new approach to active surveillance, with technologies that aim to dramatically shorten the time taken to locate and delimit new pest populations
  • development of a new helicopter spot-spraying method applicable to urban or suburban environments
  • evaluation of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) platform for targeted spraying
  • modelling to identify improved eradication strategies, including non-pesticide methods, to help evaluate the best treatment options for incursion responses
  • a rubric, co-developed with MPI, which supports integration of social and technical factors into surveillance
  • relationship building to understand social licence for biosecurity − team members also work with the Māori Biosecurity Network (Te Tira Whakamātaki) to explore cultural acceptability and concerns with emerging biosecurity technologies.

This highly collaborative programme has been given a Gold rating by MBIE.

Organisations involved

NZ: Scion, Manaaki Whenua, University of Auckland, University f Canterbury, Lincoln University, AgResearch, PPCNZ Ltd, Will Allen and Associates, Ecoresearch Associates (Shaun Ogilvie), B3
France: CNRS, INRA
UK: Forest Research UK
USA: US Forest Service, Agricultural Research Service, Continuum Dynamics Inc.
Canada: Simon Fraser University, Canadian Forest Service.

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