A recent study at North Carolina State University shows that DNA analysis of spotted-wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii) flies can detect whether they fed on strawberries as much as seven days prior. Researchers hope the proof of concept will lead to more accurate analysis of the invasive pest’s dispersal in the field.
A recent study in Oregon details the predatory habits of the wasp Astata unicolor—its preferred prey is the invasive brown marmorated stink bug—and notes its potential as a native natural enemy of the invasive pest.
Officials in New Jersey report that the invasive tick Haemaphysalis longicornis has successfully overwintered and was found once again on a rural property in mid-April 2018, after an infestation was reported there in 2017, the first such appearance of the species within North American borders.
The current outbreak of eastern larch beetle in northern Minnesota is going into its 18th year, and researchers have found that at least some eastern larch beetles are able to reach maturity without requiring an overwintering period. In short, warmer winters mean eastern larch beetle is killing trees faster than it can be managed.
Larval mites, known as "chiggers," from the family Trombiculidae are vectors of the bacteria that causes scrub typhus. The infection has been implicated as a common cause of acute encephalitis syndrome in India, where public health professionals are looking to better understand the variety of mite species present on rodents and their rates of infection.
Solitary bees face different—and less well-understood—challenges from pesticide exposure than their colony-dwelling honey bee cousins. A pair of entomologists encourage colleagues to dedicate more research to these important pollinators.
Insects have evolved a variety of mechanisms to try to overcome the effects of insecticides—including, in some cases, help from the bacteria and other microbes living in insects' guts. A growing number of studies indicate a link between symbiotic microbes and insecticide resistance in a diverse range of insects.
Researchers in Argentina compared mathematical models of head lice transmission with analysis of infestations in school children and found that head lice infestations across a classroom likely require at least one severely infested child serving as a "superspreader."
A study of lone star ticks in the forested Missouri Ozarks found that nymphs and adults were more abundant in valleys and on north-facing hills than in other areas. Meanwhile, nymphs appeared less often in the areas of greater temperature variability, while adults were less prevalent with increased elevation.
To estimate the catch rate of traps for invasive spotted-wing drosophila fruit flies in tart cherry orchards, researchers at Michigan State University first marked thousands of flies with fluorescent dust and released them. Then they counted the recaptured flies under ultraviolet light.
A study in Brazil finds that a common fungicide can impair the oxygen consumption and silk production of silkworms if applied to their preferred food source, mulberry leaves.
Despite its large size, often bold coloration, and ostentatious defensive behaviors, the eastern lubber grasshopper is harmless to humans and is only rarely a pest of concern to plants.
Immediate Feedback Assessment Technique scratch-off cards offer a low-tech (and low-budget) option for evaluation of participant knowledge and learning in entomology extension programs.
A new study of 40 years' worth of data from the mid-Atlantic region of the United States finds that widespread adoption of insect-resistant Bt corn has reduced pest damage and the need for insecticide applications in offsite, non-Bt crops such as pepper, green beans, and sweet corn, as well.
After a 100-year flood struck south central Oklahoma in 2015, a study of the insects, arthropods, and other invertebrates in the area revealed striking declines of most invertebrates in the local ecosystem, a result that researchers say illustrates the hidden impacts of natural disasters.
To manage pest infestations in greenhouses, banker plants draw in different insect species that don’t feed on the main crop but do serve as hosts for predator insects that will also attack the pest on the main crop—a useful (and green) tool for integrated pest management.
A recent study at the University of Florida found that termites baited with an insecticide known as a chitin synthesis inhibitor will still follow their natural compulsion to return to their central nest to molt, an important factor in the efficacy of such baits.