Honey Bee Super-Foragers can be Replaced by Hive Mates if Necessary

apis-mellifera-alex-wild

Many social insect species have a small proportion of individual workers that perform a disproportionately large fraction of the work achieved by the colony as a whole. For example, a honey bee colony might contain a group of elite workers who forage much more than their hive mates. In order to observe this phenomenon, scientists […]

August is Tree Check Month: Help Save Trees from the Asian Longhorned Beetle

ALB-feature

By Rhonda Santos You’ve probably already heard about the Asian longhorned beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis) — or ALB for short — and its impact on the nation’s trees. Since its discovery in the U.S. in 1996, the ALB has led to the loss of nearly 130,000 trees, and the federal government has spent more than $500 […]

New Planthopper Species Found in Southern Spain

Conosimus-benae

Not much is known about the genus of planthopper known as Conosimus, which now includes six species after a new one was recently discovered in the southern part of the Iberian Peninsula in the Spanish city of Jaen. A description of it appears in the open-access Journal of Insect Science. The new species, Conosimus baenai, […]

Trogoderma glabrum: The Benjamin Button of the Insect World

Trogoderma-glabrum

By Joe Ballenger Dermestid beetles are usually decomposers that feed on corpses at the very last stages of decomposition. Many are pests because they damage museum specimens which cannot be replaced. Paradoxically, they are also prized by museums and hunters because they are very efficient at cleaning bits of meat away from bone without discoloring […]

Genetic Study Shows Orb-Weaver Spiders do not Share Common Origins

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For decades, the story of spider evolution went like this: Over time spider diversity increased and some evolved new hunting strategies, including the ability to weave orb-shaped webs to trap their prey. From that single origin, the story goes, orb-weaver spiders diverged along different evolutionary paths, leading to today, where several species weave similar — […]

New Aquatic Mite Species Named after Jennifer Lopez

Litarachna-lopezae

Earlier this year, a Mexican singer named Lila Downs had a grasshopper named after her, which was recently described in full by by Derek Woller. Now a pontarachnid mite species that is new to science has been named after the famous Puerto Rican singer Jennifer Lopez. The mite, named Litarachna lopezae, was collected from Bajo […]

Scientists Decipher Stink Bug Aggregation Pheromone

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Ever since the brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha halys) was first discovered in Allentown, Pennsylvania in the late 1990s, it has spread to more than 40 states and parts of Canada. It has devastated orchards, crops, and fields, and has become a terrible nuisance in gardens, backyards, and homes. It has an appetite for as […]

Are Local Honey Bees Healthier than Imports?

apis-mellifera-alex-wild

Honey bees with roots in the local environment manage much better in the struggle for survival than imported honey bees from foreign environments, according to new research published in a special issue of the Journal of Apicultural Research. Since 1886, queen bees have been delivered by mail to beekeepers and breeders. Today it is estimated […]

Liladownsia fraile: The Rest of the Story

Liladownsia-fraile2-feature

(A version of the following article was originally published in Metaleptea 34(2): 13-15) By Derek A. Woller My colleagues (Paolo Fontana, Ricardo Mariño-Pérez, and Hojun Song) and I recently published a paper in Zootaxa entitled “Studies in Mexican Grasshoppers: Liladownsia fraile, a new genus and species of Dactylotini (Acrididae: Melanoplinae) and an updated molecular phylogeny […]

British Entomologist Discovers New Wasp Species in Local School Playground

Encarsia-harrisoni

Dr. Andrew Polaszek, an entomologist at the Natural History Museum in London, England has discovered a new species of wasp in a local school playground. “You tend to think of new species being found in remote, exotic locations, not in a playground in Sevenoaks,” Dr. Polaszek said to the Sevenoaks Chronicle, a local newspaper. The […]

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