In the first field study of its kind, researchers confirmed Peromyscus mouse nests as understudied habitats for ticks, including blacklegged ticks and American dog ticks. Researchers are hoping to better understand the role of mouse-tick interactions within nests in the spread of tick-borne disease.
Sometimes, less is more. Case in point: the mass-rearing program that produces millions of sterile Mexican fruit flies (Anastrepha ludens) for managing wild populations. Scientists refining the effort find that a lower ratio of males to females in mating cages leads to higher fecundity and fertility in the females—and higher cost-effectiveness for the operation.
Planting strips of wildflowers next to crops is a boon for native bees, but few farms adopt the practice. A new study, however, shows farmers can turn an immediate profit by selling wildflower seeds retail, while the long-term benefits of increased pollination and crop yields materialize over time.
As the western conifer-seed bug has arrived in South America, its resemblance to kissing bugs has caused a stir, as members of the public have readily mistaken the two. Researchers in Chile recommend accessible identification keys and educational materials to better inform both health professionals and the public.
A study along a river in Central Mexico finds Hetaerina americana damselflies in reduced numbers after a decline in vegetation the addition of wastewater outlets. Researchers say the decline illustrates the impact of human land use on natural ecosystems.
Understudied and less well-known than other pests, the clover root curculio damages clover and alfalfa crops across North America. A new profile of the pest and options for managing it is published this month in the open-access Journal of Integrated Pest Management.
A new article in the Journal of Economic Entomology examines varying levels of resistance to Bt toxins developed by the pink bollworm in the United States, China, and India over the last 20 years, illustrating the importance of incorporating refuge crops in Bt systems.
Do butterflies find suitable habitat through vision or via other senses? The results of a new study were easy to see: Butterflies with flash-induced blindness consistently failed to navigate to target habitat that unaffected butterflies could readily find.
Simply counting the number of ticks on a host animal seems like a straightforward task, but an analysis of published tick research finds no single, standard method among scientists. A group of researchers says tick-counting methods should be as rigorous as any other scientific procedure and described clearly enough to allow their use in other studies.
In a recent study, the wasp Spathius galinae successfully established wild populations and outperformed other parasitoids in attacking invasive emerald ash borers in three northeastern states in the U.S. Researchers say it could become a useful biological control agent to protect native ash trees.
Woodboring beetles make good food for woodpeckers, and researchers studying how forest fires affect bird populations have studied the patterns of woodboring-beetle colonization of forests after fires. Their findings offer clues and raise new questions about the impact of fires on forest ecosystems, in a time of increased fire activity and longer fire seasons.
A recent Environmental Entomology study sheds new light on how insects fit into the puzzle of sage grouse—and rangeland—conservation.
A new profile in the Journal of Integrated Pest Management busts some myths about the European earwig (Forficula auricularia). Though perceived as a pest, it is actually an underappreciated biological control agent and likely a beneficial insect in most apple orchards.
The African fig fly (Zaprionus indianus) is an invasive fruit fly in North America that has been found commingling with its cousin spotted-wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii), sometimes even using the latter's egg-laying sites for its own. A new profile in the Journal of Integrated Pest Management highlights the African fig fly's biology and range and offers options for management.
A proof-of-concept study shows insect eggs can be marked with protein that can be later detected in a gut-content analysis of arthropod predators that fed on the eggs. Researchers say the method has applications in biological control and beyond.
Iris yellow spot virus is bad for onions, but it's good for the thrips species that carry the virus and spread it to onion plants. In a recent study, infected onion thrips lived about 20 percent longer than uninfected thrips, giving them more time to damage onion plants and transmit the virus.