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.
Several emerging mosquito-management methods require the transport of mosquitoes to precise locations. There, lab-reared mosquitoes—for instance, sterilized males—mix with wild mosquitoes and hinder the population's ability to reproduce or transmit disease. But, getting mosquitoes from lab to wild presents logistical challenges. A team led by researchers at New Mexico State University are tackling this problem and have made a surprising discovery about just how tightly live mosquitoes can be packed up.
Ever wondered how one might feed 20 million fly larvae every week? Get a glimpse into the work of entomologists who fine-tune the diet for mass-reared screwworm flies at the Panama – United States Commission for the Eradication and Prevention of Screwworm.
The return of the screwworm to Florida in 2016 was a surprise, but entomologists with the USDA and local, state, and international partners were prepared to respond. A new, in-depth report in the Journal of Medical Entomology shares a detailed account of their work re-eradicating the pest via the sterile insect technique—plus new lessons learned along the way.
By Susan J. Weller, Ph.D., and Robert K.D. Peterson, Ph.D. If there is one thing that we have learned from scientific research, it’s this: We cannot know where the next […]
By John P. Roche West Indian sweetpotato weevils (Euscepes postfasciatus) are costly pests of sweetpotato plants (Ipomoea batatas) in the Pacific, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. Entomologists in […]
Since the 1950s, the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) has been used to control screwworm flies and other insects. This technique currently involves irradiating male and female insects to make them […]
By Meredith Swett Walker In 1676, the great scientist Isaac Newton (of gravity fame) wrote a letter to another scientific titan, Robert Hooke (who had coined the biological term “cell”), […]
By Ed Ricciuti Researchers employing near infrared still photographs and time-lapse video have peered into the pupa of the living tsetse fly and for the first time have watched its […]
Two prominent members of the Entomological Society of America were posthumously selected as winners of the Golden Goose Award, which honors scientists whose federally funded work may have been considered […]
An article in the in the journal BioMed Central Biology describes a new pesticide-free and environmentally-friendly way to control diamondback moths (Plutella xylostella) with a “self-limiting gene.” The DBM is […]
The sterile insect technique, or SIT, has been used for decades to control insects such as the Mediterranean fruit fly. Basically, insects are exposed to radiation, which makes them sterile, […]
Since the 1950s, scientists have used radiation to sterilize insects, which are then released into the wild to mate, but no offspring are produced. Known as the sterile insect technique […]
The sterile insect technique, or SIT, has been used for decades. Insects are irradiated so they become sterile, and then they’re released into the wild where they find mates. However, […]
Weeks after Panama’s Health Minister, Javier Diaz, declared that the country was experiencing a “dengue epidemic,” Panama approved the evaluation of a novel tool to combat the dengue mosquito. It […]