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APEC-Australia Women in Research
Fellowship 2022
Dr. Diana Pérez Staples
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Economy: Mexico

Host Institution: Macquarie University

Project Title: Response of Queensland fruit flies to traps and host fruit

Project Outline:

The first objective will provide me with training in specific methods within chemical ecology. The aim will be to measure the flight response of wild and sterile Q-flies which will aid in determining the effectiveness of traps. The second objective will use state-of-the-art high-speed cameras and machine learning-based automatic tracking of flies. By studying how flies approach different targets, we can obtain insights into how female flies “decide” to land and lay their eggs in the fruit. We will determine the flight trajectories of

flies and test using different stimuli if females can be discouraged from landing on fruit. This second experiment could lead to innovative solutions deterring flies from infesting fruits.

The value of this research is that we attack a common problem for both countries, using environmentally friendly and sustainable control methods. This research program will provide technical training, and build relationships between Mexican and Australian researchers with broad benefits not only to the recipient of the fellowship. The outcomes we propose are a draft of a scientific paper for an international journal, and a methodology for wind tunnel assays.

Reasons for applying for fellowship: I would like to strengthen research collaboration between Mexico and Australia in combating insect pests using environmentally friendly and sustainable means of control. I am also interested in training in techniques I chemical and visual ecology, as well as machine learning that can be used to solve common problems in agriculture for many APEC countries, such as fruit flies of economic importance.

Past Achievements:

  • Member of the Mexican Academy of Sciences

  • LÓreal-Unesco Fellowship for Young Women in Science

  • Endeavour Australia Postgraduate and Postdoctoral Research Fellowship

 

Email address: diperez@uv.mx

 

LinkedIn URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/diana-pérez-staples-9a1a65243/