Little Yellow Ant is Next Invasive to Arrive in Florida

little yellow ant

“It was just a matter of time before it showed up,” says Thomas Chouvenc, Ph.D. The little yellow ant (Plagiolepis alluaudi) is a tropical species, native to Madagascar, but it had made its way to the Caribbean sometime in the past decade. And now it’s been found in Florida. Chouvenc is an assistant professor of […]

Forest Pest Invasions Can—And Should—Be Studied Before They Happen

Xyleborus glabratus and Euwallacea fornicatus

By Jiri Hulcr, Ph.D. Ambrosia beetles include some of the scariest invasive bugs. These tiny relatives of bark beetles travel the globe in wooden packaging used on commercial ships. They take their food with them: Instead of eating the wooden crates, ambrosia beetles grow symbiotic fungi inside the timber just like little farmers. As a […]

Red Widow Spider’s Range is Limited by its Diet

According to a study by University of Missouri biologist James Carrel, the diet of the mysterious red widow spider (Latrodectus bishopi Kaston) consists mainly of five species of scarab beetles that are endemic to the Florida scrub habitat, which limits the range of the spiders. “The pine scrub habitat, found on sandy ridges in Central […]