February 2010


Faculty News

Dr. David Schuster is retiring after 33 years of service to UF/IFAS and the Entomology and Nematology Department. Located at the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center, Dr. Schuster spent much of his career protecting tomatos, and other crops, from whiteflies.

Dr. Jamie Ellis was quoted in a news release on a UF/IFAS economic study that showed Africanized bees have not reduced U.S. honey production. Click here for details.


Staff News

Dr. "J" Jeyaprakash, Senior Biological Scientist, left the department, effective 19 January, for a position at the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services - Division of Plant Industry. Good luck to him!


Student News

Dr. Carl Barfield, Undergraduate Coodinator, reports that the following undergraduate students achieved Deanís List recognition for their academic performance in Fall 2009. CALS Deanís List criteria are a 3.70 GPA with a minimum of 12 semester hours of graded credits. For Fall 2009, nearly 20% of our degree-seeking students made the Deanís List.


Publications

Avery PB, Hunter WB, Hall DG, Jackson MA, Powell CA, Rogers ME. 2009. Diaphorina citri (Hemiptera: Psyllidae) infection and dissemination of the entomopathogenic fungus Isaria fumosorosea (Hypocreales: Cordycipitaceae) under laboratory conditions. Florida Entomologist 92: 608-618.

Miller CW, Hollander SD. 2010. Predation on heliconia bugs, Leptoscelis tricolor: examining the influences of crypsis and predator color preferences. Canadian Journal of Zoology 88: 122-128.

Fasulo TR. 2009. Book review: Strickman DF, Frances SP, Debboun M. Prevention of Bug Bites, Stings and Disease. Oxford University Press, New York. Florida Entomologist 92: 677-678.

Lewis C, Hodges A. (January 2010). Light brown apple moth, Epiphyas postvittana (Walker). Featured Creatures. EENY-469. http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/creatures/fruit/moths/light_brown_apple_moth.htm

Shaver B, Kaufman PE. (January 2010). Cheese skipper, Piophila casei (Linnaeus). Featured Creatures. EENY-468. http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/creatures/urban/flies/cheese_skipper.htm

Miller CW, Emlen DJ. 2010. Dynamic effects of oviposition site on offspring sexually-selected traits and scaling relationships. Evolutionary Ecology 24: 375-390.


Spring 2010 Entomology and Nematology Seminars

The seminar series is held on Thursday afternoons in room 1031. Refreshments are served at 3:45 pm, and the seminar begins at 4:00 pm. For a listing of the speakers and their presentations for Spring 2010, see the department's seminar Web site at http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/seminar/.


Meetings and Presentations

Dr. Christine W. Miller gave the invited presentation "How does the condition of females affect their mating decisions?" at the Winter Animal Behavior Meeting, Steamboat Springs, CO, 23-29 January.

If you are attending the Florida State Fair near Tampa, be sure and visit the Insect Encounters exhibit. Our department, the USDA-APHIS, Florida Collection of Arthropods, and Florida Pest Management Association all have exhibits there. Of course, ours is the best looking, due to the talents of Jane Medley, our Senior Art and Graphics Specialist.

Organizers of the Everglades Research and Education Center Seminar Series invited Dr. James P. Cuda to speak on 5 February "Biological Control of Brazilian Peppertree: Progress and Perspectives."


Beetle Workshop

The National Plant Diagnostic Network (NPDN), in cooperation with USDA-APHIS PPQís National Identification Service, is sponsoring an Adult Woodborer and Bark Beetle Identification Workshop at the University of Florida, Gainesville, during 4-6 May 2010.

This workshop is meant for insect taxonomists at universities, NPDN diagnosticians, state departments of agriculture and APHIS-PPQ personnel with identification responsibilities directly in support of Cooperative Agriculture Pest Surveys (CAPS) programs. Enrollment will be limited to 30 participants, with priority given to those individuals who fit the criteria. Other taxonomists with identification responsibilities are encouraged to apply.

The workshop will focus on eastern, native United States species and pests not known to occur or not widely established.

The workshop will provide identification training to screen for and recognize potentially newly introduced adult pest woodborer and bark beetle species in trap survey samples in order to distinguish them from established species. The pest species emphasized in this training are not known to occur in the U.S. and those on the CAPS list of survey target Scoytinae, Buprestidae, Cerambycidae, and Siricidae. Training is by nationally recognized experts for the groups covered, from Cornell University, the USDA-Forest Service, and USDA-APHIS Plant Protection and Quarantine. The content includes laboratory and lecture sessions focused on the various families, examining specimens, and methods for the proper sorting and screening from trap samples. The registration cost includes all printed training materials, lunches, and covers travel expenses for some of the presenters.

Please access the workshop Web site for tentative schedule and presenter information. If you have taxonomic responsibilities related to forest pest surveys, think you qualify, and have funds, plus tentative approval from your supervisor to attend, please fill out the form expressing interest in attending and answer the questions it contains. The deadline for the pre-registration expression of interest form is 19 February 2010. Applicants will be notified by 26 February of their acceptance.

Once you are notified of selection in late February, you will then need to actually register at the same, but a modified version of Web site provided at that time, to pay the registration fee and make hotel reservations at the hotel where a block of rooms is reserved. For PPQ participants an MRP-13 form will be prepared to provide that level of authorization for your travel. If you have any questions please contact Amanda Hodges at 352-273-3957, achodges@ufl.edu; Brian Kopper at 919-855-7318, Brian.j.kopper@aphis.usda.gov; or Joel Floyd at 301-734-4396, joel.p.floyd@aphis.usda.gov.


Grants

Drs. James P. Cuda and William A. Overholt received a $153,000 grant from Osceola County to continue their research on biological control of the invasive aquatic weeds hydrilla and hygrophila.


Outreach

On 27-28 January, the National 4-H Youth Development Institute was held at the Hilton Conference Center in Gainesville. The Entomology and Nematology Department sponsored two seminars featuring the "ABC's of Entomology" curriculum, and the new "IPM goes to School" and "Forensic Entomology" curriculum. The room was packed both days and the 4-H participants provided outstanding feedback. Beginning this summer, our curriculum will be implemented at county extension offices statewide! A special thanks to Dr. Rebecca Baldwin, Dr. Jamie Ellis, Thomas Fasulo, Sharon Clemmensen, Catherine Zettel Nalen and Stephanie Larrick for helping out!

During 21-25 June, twenty-five lucky 6-8th graders will participate in our department's first annual Entomology Field Camp! The day camp (8 am -5 pm) will feature entomology learning activities, collecting trips, meet your scientist days, field trips and much more. We can accommodate 25 students. If you are interested in helping with the camp, make plans to attend the Entomology Field Camp informational meeting on 16 February, from 12-1 pm in room 1027.


Segments

New research finds that insect colonies operate as "superorganisms." Click here for details.

Michigan State University scientists discovered that diverse biofuel plantings attract more beneficial insects than do single crops, such as corn. Click here for details.

The Onion News recently reported that a wonderful friendship between a caterpillar and a horse was exploited for a cheap children's book. Click here for details.

If you thought butterflies were just blown with the wind, then read how entomologists now believe they windsurf! Click here for details.

The Superbowl is over and life can now return to what passes for normal for those of you addicted to football. Were the commercials this year better or worse? Do you remember the Tobasco Mosquito Superbowl ad of 1998? If not, check it out here.

Researchers discover that honey bee colonies and beekeepers are declining in numbers throughout Europe. Click here for details.

Bad news for mosquitoes: scent receptor research may lead to better traps and repellents. Click here for details.

Researchers are concerned that storm runoff and sewage treatment outflow is far more contaminated with household pesticides than with agricultural pesticides. What might that mean to future regulation of sales and application to homeowners and residential pest control companies? Click here for details.

Dr. Doug Caldwell, entomologist and county faculty in Collier County, Florida, cooperated with Stephen Brown, county faculty in Lee County, in producing and posting on YouTube a video on the ficus whitefly. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4Ze-Sc9Baw to watch the video.


Bug Quote

"A beard creates lice, not brains." - Ammianus Marcellinus, Roman historian


Newsletter Minutiae

Thomas Fasulo is the newsletter editor. Departmental faculty, staff, students and alumni can submit news anytime to fasulo@ufl.edu. Issues usually are published by early mid-month. Submit items for an issue by the 7th of that month.

UF-Bugnews-L listserv subscribers receive notices when issues are posted on the newsletter Web site at http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/news, which has instructions for subscribing and unsubscribing. Pam Howell and Nancy Sanders review the newsletter for errors. Thomas Fasulo does the HTML coding.

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February 2010.