PESTS  >  PESTS IN THE NEWS
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  • Thu Jul 24 2014

    5 Things That Make You a Mosquito Magnet

    By GILLIAN MOHNEY Hot and humid summers mean mosquitoes. And the annoying insects spread more than just itchy welts – they can transmit painful and sometimes deadly diseases. At least 497 people in the continental U.S. as well as Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands have contracted the chikungunya virus so far this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -- 140 of them in the past week alone. For most of us, mosquito bites are just a nuisance. And some people have it worse than others. What makes a person a mosquito magnet? Read on to learn how some ...

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  • Thu Jul 24 2014

    Bug Swarm So Big It Shows Up On Radar

    Anyone who’s easily creeped out by insects might want to skip this story. On Sunday, a massive swarm of mayflies exploded from the bottom of the Mississippi River and spread from the area near La Crosse, Wisconsin to breed. Yahoo! News reported that this year’s summer breeding season resulted in such an enormous spawn of insects that the cluster showed up on weather radar. You can see an animated radar image picked up by a local weather station below, courtesy of Yahoo. The fuzzy blue areas are actual swarms of insects flying out from the base of the river. The green and yellow areas of ...

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  • Tue Jul 22 2014

    Florida backyard beekeepers keep hope, and honey, alive

    Chuck Fletcher and Dorine Olive harvest honey from their backyard… (Tom Benitez, Orlando Sentinel ) In a Maitland backyard, there's an unusual buzz in the air. It's bees. Thousands and thousands of bees. Dorine Olive and Chuck Fletcher have a whole colony of the insects, and it's time for the honey harvest. Like backyard chickens, backyard beekeeping has become something of a trend. Motivated by a desire for natural, locally produced food and media coverage of the collapse of bee colonies worldwide, people are taking up backyard beekeeping around Florida in record numbers, said ...

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  • Tue Jul 22 2014

    New device based on fly's freakishly acute hearing may find applications in futuristic hearing aids

    Even within a phylum so full of mean little creatures, the yellow-colored Ormia ochracea fly is distinguished among other arthropods for its cruelty—at least to crickets. Native to the southeastern U.S. states and Central America, the fly is a most predatory sort of parasite. It swoops onto the back of a singing male cricket, deposits a smear of larvae, and leaves its wicked brood to invade, kill and consume the cricket from inside out. None of this would be possible without the fly's ability to find a cricket—the cornerstone of its parasitic lifestyle. The fly can pinpoint the location ...

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  • Tue Jul 22 2014

    Pest repellent sickens, kills NE Bend birds

    Published: July 22, 2014 10:00AM The roof of the Prestige Senior Living High Desert facility in northeast Bend is littered with Avitrol, a bird repellent used by licensed pest control agencies. The repellent can cause seizures to birds, often in mid-flight. And during last week's heat wave, it even led to deaths. "Many of the birds were found on the pavement, where temperatures were over 140 degrees," said Dr. Jeff Cooney, veterinarian with the High Desert Wildlife Rehab & Rehabilitation Center. "Their hearts were racing, they were seizing, and they were often dying of cardiac ar...

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  • Tue Jul 22 2014

    World's largest aquatic insect specimen found in China

    (CNN) -- The world's largest flying aquatic insect, with huge, nightmarish pincers, has been discovered in China's Sichuan province, experts say. According to the Insect Museum of West China, local villagers in the outskirts of Chengdu handed over "weird insects that resemble giant dragonflies with long teeth" earlier this month. Several of these odd critters were examined by the museum and found to be unusually large specimens of the giant dobsonfly, which is native to China and Vietnam. The largest one measured 21 centimeters (8.27 inches) when its wings were open, according to t...

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  • Mon Jul 21 2014

    Don't let them bite: Why bed bugs are worse than ever

    Josh Elliott, CTVNews.ca Canada's bed bug problem is worse than ever, as experts say the pesky little bloodsuckers are multiplying in record numbers in cities and smaller communities across the country. Pest control experts say the frequency of bed bug reports has shot up 20 per cent since last year, as the blood-sucking, rapidly-reproducing insects have continued to spread. Mike Heimbach of Abell Pest Control says that increase has been a steady, "compounding growth" in the last six years. And it shows no sign of letting up. "They've really got a good foothold in Canada and the Un...

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  • Sun Jul 20 2014

    BBB: How to find reliable pest control services

    During the Summer months the Better Business Bureau gets more calls and emails from people wanting to know about pest control services. Erin Dufner is the Senior VP of Communications at the BBB with all advice to help you find reliable service. KVUE

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  • Thu Jul 17 2014

    'Love Motel For Insects' Opens for Business In RTP

    There's a new establishment opening for one night only in Research Triangle Park. It's a Love Motel for Insects. Imagine several teepees lit up against the night sky - attracting area insects from far and wide. It's a voyeuristic space. Once the ultraviolet light attracts the insects, people can look closely at them. Brandon Ballengee is the scientist/artist behind the project. An article in American Scientist Magazine provides some background: Impressed with the biodiversity of the local tropical ecosystem during a trip to Costa Rica, Ballengee decided one evening to leave some bed-s...

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  • Thu Jul 17 2014

    For Bees, Tongue Size Matters: Insects Lap Nectar with Different Lengths

    Scientists have taken a closer look at the diet of the Western honey bee and have found that significant differences occur depending on what the bees eat. (Photo : Flickr/Jennifer C) Did you know that bees have tongues? Now, scientists have taken a closer look at them to see what determines the length of their tongues, which could be crucial to understanding bee species' resiliency to change. Like Us on Facebook A compatible tongue length is essential for bees to pollinate flowers. In fact, some insects and plants are closely matched, with bee tongues sized to the flower depth. Oth...

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  • Thu Jul 17 2014

    Pest Control: Gator caught in Katy was looking for feline dinner

    Pest controllers who captured a three foot alligater hiding out under a Katy car Tuesday say the reptile was probably hoping to find his next meal – neighborhood cats. The frightening idea comes from Gotcha Pest Control who were called out to the Oak Park Trails subdivision Tuesday to pick up the scaly beast. "They get under the cars because they like to snatch the cats out," said Claude Griffin, "He's hiding out there because he wants to eat." Calls to Texas Parks and Wildlife to confirm the theory were not immediately returned but don't panic yet cat owners. In the past at lea...

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  • Thu Jul 17 2014

    Stink Bug Chemical Language Decoded By Scientists

    The discovery may have agricultural applications right away The pheromones of the brown marmorated stink bug, scientifically known as Halyomorpha halys, have been decoded by scientists according to a new report. Research on the insects has found that they use their distinctive pheromones in order to attract other members of the species to various locations in order to point out areas with food and other useful resources. The research, which was led by Ashot Khrimian, of the Invasive Insect Biocontrol and Behavior Laboratory in Beltsville, shows that adult males of the stink bug specie...

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  • Tue Jul 15 2014

    Giant African Snails Stopped At Airport

    By Sky News US Team A shipment of several dozen live giant African snails, weighing some 2lb (0.9kg) each, has been seized by officials at Los Angeles International Airport. The 67 snails, measuring about six inches (15cm) in length, arrived from Lagos, Nigeria, in two plastic baskets with paperwork describing them as being for human consumption, custom inspectors said. The snails are considered a delicacy in Nigeria but are also voracious pests that eat not just plants, but paint and stucco off houses. It was the largest such shipment ever seized at LAX, the US Customs and Bord...

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  • Mon Jul 14 2014

    Rodenticides Market worth $900 Million by 2019

    The report "Rodenticides Market by Type (Anticoagulants, Non-Anticoagulants, and Others), by End User (Agricultural Field, Warehouses, Pest Control Companies, Urban Centers, and Others) & by Geography - Global Trends & Forecasts to 2019", defines the Rodenticides Market and segments it into agriculture & farming, pest control companies, urban center segments with analyses and projections of the market size of each of these segments, in terms of value. It also identifies the driving and restraining factors for the Rodenticides Market with an analysis of trends, opportunities, burning issues,...

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  • Fri Jul 11 2014

    How Pests Affect Tenants

    Tenants have low tolerance for even one pest sighting, a new survey reveals Pests are a never-ending source of trouble in commercial buildings, according to a new survey that recorded 89% of respondents saying their tenants reported at least one pest sighting in the last year. The survey, which polled office, building, and facility managers in a wide variety of property types, revealed that nearly half of office tenants will notify the building management after just one pest sighting – and that number shoots up to 83% after a second sighting. It’s not uncommon to see the occasional pe...

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  • Fri Jul 11 2014

    How spider toxin can protect crops from insects

    In a discovery that offers new ways to protect crops from insects, researchers have found that insecticides can be designed to target specific pests without harming beneficial species like bees. And the answer lies in a potent spider toxin. "Most insecticides used today take a carpet-bombing approach, killing indiscriminately and sometimes even hurting humans and other animals. The more specific a toxin's target, the less dangerous it is for everything else," explained Frank Bosmans, an assistant professor of physiology at the Johns Hopkins University's School of Medicine. The find...

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  • Fri Jul 11 2014

    Lawsuit Blames State Pesticide Agency Stalling in Honeybee Disaster

    Birds do it, bees do it and a pesticide is blamed for it. “It,” in this case, is the unnatural decline worldwide of avian and insect populations. A new Dutch study links declining bird populations for the first time—through the decline of insects they eat—to a family of pesticides known as neonicotinoids. The link of neonicotinoids to honeybees is not new, and because it is not new, a coalition of advocacy groups sued California’s Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) this week to do something about it. Honeybees, which are crucial to California’s agricultural industry, have been d...

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  • Thu Jul 10 2014

    Second Silent Spring? Bird Declines Linked to Popular Pesticides

    Jason Bittel Pesticides don't just kill pests. New research out of the Netherlands provides compelling evidence linking a widely used class of insecticides to population declines across 14 species of birds. Those insecticides, called neonicotinoids, have been in the news lately due to the way they hurt bees and other pollinators. (Related: "The Plight of the Honeybee.") This new paper, published online Wednesday in Nature, gets at another angle of the story—the way these chemicals can indirectly affect other creatures in the ecosystem. Scientists from Radboud University in Nijme...

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  • Wed Jul 9 2014

    EcoPesticides Signs Licensing Agreement with STC.UNM for Microbial Pesticide Technology

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- EcoPesticides International, Inc., has signed a licensing agreement for a novel “green” microbial-based pesticide technology with STC.UNM, the University of New Mexico’s technology transfer and economic development organization. EcoPesticides is a New Mexico-based company developing pesticides that use naturally occurring microorganisms to control a variety of insect pests. The exclusive licensing agreement encompasses global rights to patent-pending technology that addresses the performance challenges that microbial pesticides face in field applic...

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  • Wed Jul 9 2014

    Kill switch: breeding kamikaze mosquitoes

    (CNN) -- The Aedes Aegypti mosquito is just two to three millimeters long but its impact is devastating. Of the thousands of mosquito species, this one bears primary responsibility for one of the world's deadliest and fastest growing diseases. In the past 50 years, incidence of Dengue Fever has multiplied by 30 according to the WHO, spreading from nine countries in 1970 to over 100 today. There is no vaccine or cure for the painful virus known as Breakbone Fever, and of the 50-100 million people infected each year, over 20,000 die. Aedes Aegypti has spread with this epidemic, and has ...

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