PESTS  >  PESTS IN THE NEWS
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  • Thu Feb 26 2015

    Attack of the crazy ants: Meet the dream-haunting insects plaguing the American Southeast

    The English had the longbow. The Spanish had steel. Tawny crazy ants have their own formidable weapon—a protective acid sheath—that protects them against fire ant enemies. The revelation comes from a new study published this week. Named for their butterscotch color and erratic movements, tawny crazy ants are the newest insect invaders sprawling throughout Texas and the Gulf states, unseating the reigning imported fire ants that have infested the region. Teeming out of electrical outlets and short-circuiting electronics, the tiny reddish-brown crazy ants have been making headlines as thei...

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  • Thu Feb 26 2015

    Insect Fear Film Festival celebrates bugging out - Daily Illini

    Even May Berenbaum, National Medal of Science winner and entomology professor, once feared insects. They creep, they crawl, they slither. And for every one human on Earth, there are 200 million insects. But now, it’s time to face them. Insect phobias will be explored — and possibly broken — Saturday at 6 p.m., as the Department of Entomology hosts the Insect Fear Film Festival at Foellinger Auditorium for its 32nd year. The festival will show insect fear films and feature other activities, summoning interactions between attendees and insects. “The X-Files Fight For the Future,” “Wa...

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Chef wants to 'normalise' eating INSECTS at new restaurant

    "We want to pioneer the movement to normalise the eating of bugs on a day-to-day basis." Adam Holcroft Then a soon-to-be open restaurant could be just the thing. Grub Kitchen, in Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, is set to become the first place in the UK ...

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Cochineal insects are a source of red dye

    Cochineal insects, Dactylopius coccus, are scale insects in the family Coccidae. They are soft-bodied, flat and oval-shaped. The females attach themselves to prickly pear cactus and feed on the plant juices. The nymphs appear white or gray from the waxy ...

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Disease nearly wipes out some bat populations

    but need to be cautious. Indiana surveys just completed and results expected in two weeks. Bad news for bats is good news for insects, some of them pests.

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Famous Female Entomologists Part 3: Looking Beyond Edith Patch’s C.V.

    This is Part Three of a five-part series on Famous Female Entomologists, in honor of the 32nd Annual Insect Fear Film Festival (February 28, 2015), the theme of which is Female Entomologists. (Part 1, Part 2) By Katie Todd Edith Patch (1876-1954), the first female president of the Entomological Society of America, has a noteworthy record of entomological achievements. It’s clearly a prerequisite for any ESA President to first become an outstanding entomologist, and Edith was no different. She had: Katie Todd – A PhD degree in entomology from Cornell University in 1911. – A po...

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Minnesotans can help the environment by stopping the spread of harmful pests ... - High Plains Journal

    If not careful, harmful insects and plants could leave scars on Minnesota's environment. That was the message from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture during National Invasive Species Awareness Week, which ran Feb. 22 through 28.

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    New Theory Claims Yawning Evolved To Aid In Insect-Consumption - io9

    According to Emma Kowal of Harvard University, yawning evolved in our hunter-gatherer ancestors to be a highly efficient method of bug-consumption. Her argument is thoroughly and impressively researched, logically presented, undeniably captivating, and ...

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Our nightmare battle with a plague of rats: One family tell how their lives and home were turned upside down by an increasingly common suburban horror

    We were referred instead to a £70-an-hour pest-control company. An exterminator, who had the weary air of a man who had seen everything, turned up later that afternoon. Within ten minutes, the call went up. ‘We’ve found our rat!’ my husband yelled ...

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Pests, Rodents Burrowing Into Austin Homes During Cold Snap - KEYE TV

    People aren't the only ones trying to stay warm during this cold snap. Pests and rodents are looking for a warm place to hide, and there could be some significant consequences if wild critters end up calling your home, their home too. “We have been ...

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  • Wed Feb 25 2015

    Survey shows biosecurity should be taught in school

    A survey of school children has found they lack knowledge about unwanted plants and pests and the effects they could have on our environment. The findings are surprising given the constant warnings we receive on the threat they pose to our horticulture industry.

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  • Tue Feb 24 2015

    Alberta mother trying to kill bedbugs with imported pesticide accidentally poisoned children, killing baby

    A mother trying to kill bed bugs in her Fort McMurray apartment used an imported pesticide that fatally poisoned her infant and left her other children critically ill. The substance used in the apartment was a pellet form of phosphine, an agricultural pesticide that is strictly controlled in Canada and requires special training to use. When exposed to the air, the pellets react with moisture and release phosphine gas, said James Kehrer, a toxicologist at the University of Alberta. As a gas, it’s often used to fumigate large batches of grain. “It will kill the bed bugs, but it’s nas...

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  • Tue Feb 24 2015

    Contractor Charged with Stealing Mail

    A Northwestern University pest control technician contractor is accused of stealing mail at the university. On February 10, University police - in conjunction with the US Postal Inspections Service - arrested Heric (AKA Erik) I. Nevarez, a contractor from Smithereen Pest Control for three felony counts of residential burglary in addition to misdemeanor charges of theft, criminal trespass to property and criminal trespass to residence. The investigation into potential mail fraud began in December 2014 when a Northwestern parent reported that items of mail that were sent by him did not ...

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  • Mon Feb 23 2015

    Environmental Almanac: Real-life female stars in entomology

    Depictions of female entomologists in film will be the focus of the 32nd Insect Fear Film Festival, which will take place Saturday at the University of Illinois. In anticipation of that — or maybe as an antidote — Environmental Almanac correspondent Michelle Duennes, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Entomology, caught up with the two newest faculty members in her department to provide a glimpse of what up-and-coming female entomologists are really like. Allison Hansen came to the UI in 2014 after earning a Ph.D. from the University of California, Riverside, and postdoctoral work...

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  • Mon Feb 23 2015

    REAL ESTATE: Termite fighters bugged by homebuyer contract changes

    Wood Destroying Organism Inspections The California Association of Realtors has changed the way termite and other wood-destroying pest-inspection provisions appear on a 10-page agreement to buy a home. And that’s got the pest control professionals bugged. “Our concern is that it may diminish the number of termite inspections that are done here in California,” said Joshua Adams, director of membership and technical services for Pest Control Operators of California. “We are afraid this critical step in homebuying and selling will be missed.” Neil Kalin, assistant general counsel f...

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  • Sat Feb 21 2015

    'Enemy' insects make strange bedfellows

    The groggy hibernating wasp enemies crawled out of the nest together.(Photo: Mike Riter/Courtesy photo) There are days that turn out far better than we can imagine. Jan. 19 was such a day for me. Josh Gaylord, nature photographer Grant Bost and I were on our way to Josh's house in Claverack to collect a yellow jacket nest the previous owner photographed in his attic. Though there was excitement and anticipation, I thought it would be a routine, rather uneventful undertaking. It was anything but. I expected the nest to be on the ceiling. We walked around and finally spotted it on...

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  • Sat Feb 21 2015

    Fire Ants Ahoy! Pests Hitched Ride Around Globe on Spanish Galleons

    Spanish ships spread tropical fire ants around the globe in the 16th century, according to new research about one of the first worldwide invasive species. Tropical fire ants (Solenopsis geminata) originally hail from the Americas, but are now found almost anywhere with a tropical climate. The tiny ants defend their nests aggressively, and their stings leave painful white pustules on the skin. The ants first spread when 16th-century Spanish galleons picked them up in the New World, researchers reported Jan. 16 in the journal Molecular Ecology. "A lot of these ships, particularly if ...

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  • Sat Feb 21 2015

    FTC files complaint over anti-insect wrist bands

    NEW YORK (AP) — The Federal Trade Commission has filed a complaint against a company that makes wrist bands intended to repel insects, saying there is no evidence they work. Online listings say the Viatek Bugband10 repels mosquitoes and other pests up to five days. The FTC says the company doesn't have reliable scientific evidence supporting those claims and calls its marketing deceptive. Viatek did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The Bugband10 could not be found on Viatek's website but the product was available online at retailers including Amazon and Wal-Mart, w...

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  • Sat Feb 21 2015

    Home News FDA Sends Warning Letter to Bakeshop Over Pest Concerns

    | February 19, 2015 WASHINGTON — Dutchman’s Bakeshop, Waynesboro, Va., was sent a warning letter (dated Feb. 3, 2015) from the FDA over failures to “take effective measures to exclude pests from processing areas and to protect against the contamination of food on the premises by pests.” The letter stated that FDA investigators “observed numerous incidences of apparent insects and apparent rodent excreta pellets throughout your Production Area, including your general work area, storage room #1, storage room #2, dishwashing room, ingredient mixing room, and storage room #3.” FDA ackn...

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  • Sat Feb 21 2015

    Take the LEED With These 6 Pest Management Tips

    Reducing the environmental impact of your facility’s indoor and outdoor pest control efforts is a relatively easy way to obtain credits toward the LEED “Existing Building Operations and Maintenance” certification. As you continue striving for the ...

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