May 2009

Faculty News

Drs. Lance Osborne and Steven Arthurs of the Mid-Florida REC at Apopka, were featured in a UF/IFAS news release on biological control of chilli thrips. The project, in cooperation with the USDA, is testing two species of predatory mites and the results are very favorable. You can view the news release at, and the UF/IFAS Chilli Thrips Web site at

On 27 March, Dr. Marjorie Hoy discovered an unusual mealybug on some orchids in her greenhouse behind our building. She passed it on to Lyle Buss of our Insect Identification lab. He then passed it on to our colleagues at the Division of Plant Industry. The mealybug was identified as an orchid mealybug, Pseudococcus dendrobiorum Williams (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae), and it is a new Western Hemisphere record. For information on this species, see the FDACS-DPI Web site at

Dr. James P. Cuda represented the department as one of the Marshalls at the University's Spring Semester Commencement ceremonies held at the O'Connell Center, 2 May 2009.

Dr. James P. Cuda participated in the Departmentís External Advisory Committee Meeting held on 4 May. Cuda gave a presentation on "Biocontrol of Brazilian peppertree (Schinus terebinthifolius): Challenges and Opportunities." The presentation was co-authoured by Dr Julio Medal.

Staff News

Dr. Rebecca Baldwin recently was featured in an IFAS News Release on our Outreach Committee's revamped Bug Club Web site. The news release is located at

Student News

The following graduate students completed their degrees this month. Congratulations to all of them.



Glady Njumwa is a new first for our department. She is our first international student who remained in her country (Kenya) and completed a Master of Science degree through distance education. Ms. Njumwa works in a laboratory run by the International Conference on Inverse Problems in Engineering (ICIPE). Her Supervisory Committee consisted of Dr. William Overholt, Indian River REC-Ft. Pierce, who has a cooperative research program with ICIPE through the UF/IFAS International Programs Office; Dr. Florence Olubayo, University of Nairobi; and Dr. Brigette Nyambo (ICIPE). Glady's thesis is currently being formatted for publication in a peer-review journal.


Arevalo HA, Stansly PA. 2009. Suppression of Myllocerus undatus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) in Valencia orange with Chlorpyrifos sprays directed at ground and foliage. Florida Entomologist 92: 150-152.

Stansly PA, Qureshi JA, Arevalo HA. 2009. Why, when and how to monitor and manage Asian citrus psyllid. Citrus Industry. March 2009.

Arevalo HA, Fraulo AB, Liburd OE. 2009. Management of flower thrips in blueberries in Florida. Florida Entomologist 92: 7-13.

Qureshi JA, Rogers ME, Hall DG, Stansly PA. 2009. Incidence of invasive Diaphorina citri (Hemiptera: Psyllidae) and its introduced parasitoid Tamarixia radiata (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) in Florida citrus. Journal of Economic Entomology 102: 247-256.

Lietze V-U, Sims KR, Salem TZ, Geden CJ, Boucias DG. 2009. Transmission of MdSGHV among adult house flies, Musca domestica (Diptera: Muscidae), occurs via salivary secretions and excreta. Journal of Invertebrate Pathology 101: 49-55.

Hall DW, Butler JF. (April 2009). Red admiral, Vanessa atalanta rubria (Fruhstorfer). Featured Creatures. EENY-446.

Boina DR, Onagbola EO, Salyani M, Stelinski LL. 2009. The influence of post-treatment temperature on the toxicity of insecticides against Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri Kuwayama. Journal of Economic Entomology 102: 685-691.

Stelinski LL, Rodriguez-Saona C, Meyer WL. 2009. Recognition of foreign oviposition marking pheromone in a multitrophic context. Naturwissenschaften 96: 585-592.

Jeyaprakash A, Hoy MA, Alsopp M. 2009. Multiple Wolbachia strains in Apis mellifera capensis from southern Africa. Apidologie 40: 178-183.

Hoy MA. 2009. Genome analyses of the predatory mite Metaseiulus occidentalis: Mitey small and mitey large. BioEssays 31: 581-590.

Halbert SE, Eger JE. 2009. Nerthra fuscipes, a toad bug (Hemiptera: Gelastocoridae) new to the USA, established in Florida. Florida Entomologist 92: 161-162.

Halbert SE, Manjunath K, Roka F, Brodie M. 2008. Huanglongbing (citrus greening) in Florida, 2008. Proceedings of FFTC-PPRI-NIFTS Joint Workshop on management of citrus greening and virus diseases for the rehabilitation of citrus industry in the ASPAC. pp. 58-67.

Hall DW, Butler JF. (May 2009). Red-spotted purple, Limenitis arthemis astyanax (Fabricius). Featured Creatures. EENY-447.

Suiter DR, Scharf ME. (December 2008). Insecticide basics for the pest management professional. Entomology Departmental Publications. University of Georgia.

Espinosa A, Hodges A, Hodges G, Mannion C. (May 2009). Coconut mealybug, Nipaecoccus nipae (Maskell). Featured Creatures. EENY-448.

Hall DW. (May 2009). American lady, Vanessa virginiensis (Drury). Featured Creatures. EENY-449.

Cuda JP. 2009. News from the Field, Gainesville: Screening of the Brazilian peppertree tortricid moth completed. FANREP Newsletter 5: 7.

McQuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity

The third annual newsletter of the University of Florida's McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity is now available. This issue covers: expeditions around the world, new collections, Butterfly Fest 2008, grants and awards, student research, publications, local outreach and more. The 8 MB PDF issue is located at the bottom of the Center's Research and Collections page at

Meetings and Presentations

Drs. Phil Stansly, Alejandro Arevalo and Jawwad Qureshi, of the UF/IFAS Southwest Research and Education Center, in cooperation with Dr. Mongi Zekri, Multi-County Citrus Agent for Southwest Florida, provided a workshop on scouting for Asian citrus psyllid on 28 April 2009. The workshop was conducted in Spanish as requested by local citrus growers.

On the afternoon of 4 May, we hosted a meeting of our External Advisory Committee. Drs. Billy Crow, Eileen Buss, Phillip Koehler, and Faith Oi briefed the committee on a program review of Urban and Landscape Pest Management. The committee then received a program review of our Biological Control Efforts from Drs. Howard Frank, Marjorie Hoy, Julio Medal and James Cuda.

On 7 April, Dr. Jamie D. Ellis presented a talk to the Collier County Audubon Society on "Colony Collapse Disorder in Honey Bees."

The 2009 National Plant Diagnostic Network National Meeting, Diagnostics in the 21st Century, will be held 6-10 December in Miami, Florida. The meeting will provide an exciting, interactive, and educational program for diagnosticians, extension specialists, and regulatory partners. Complete information on the agenda (symposiums, workshops, etc.), abstract submissions, speakers, tours and hotel is available at

Dr. James P. Cuda attended the 2009 Aquatic Weed Control Shortcourse held in Coral Springs, FL, 4-7 May. Cuda was invited to give a presentation on "The basics of weed biological control." He also was a moderator for the Biological Control Session and a session on Aquatic Weed Information and Use of Surfactants.


Dr. Jamie D. Ellis and Dr. Mike Scharf received a grant for $48,106 from the National Honey Board to determine if varroa mites and pesticides interact synergistically to harm developing honey bees.


On 3 April, Dr. Jamie D. Ellis spoke during Career Day at Bell Middle School, in Gilchrist County, on "What is an entomologist and what does one do?"

Jason Graham and Anthony Vaudo, two graduate students in the Honey Bee Research and Extension Laboratory, recently hosted a tour for eight students of the Collegiate Farm Bureau Chapter of the Florida FFA. Members of the CFBC took a tour of the Bee Unit where they were shown an observation hive and learned about bee biology, honey production, what goes on in and around the hive, pests and diseases of bees, and the equipment used at the Bee Unit.

On 24 April, Dr. Rebecca Baldwin and Thomas Fasulo visited the 2nd and 3rd grades of Littlewood Elementary School in Gainesville. While there, they introduced the students to insects, entomophagy and careers in entomology. Ms. Lynn Bryan, their teacher, had done such a good job of teaching them about insects that Rebecca and Tom were amazed at some of the entomological concepts these young students already understood. Some of the students thought they recognized Fasulo from his previous visit, a few weeks before as a Union soldier, when he spoke to them about the war and how the soldiers lived, especially how they interacted with lice, weevils and flies. However, Fasulo told them that they just mistook him for his great-grandfather who had actually made the visit.

The department's newly revamped Florida Bug Club site at, which helps youngsters learn about insects, is also for parents, teachers and others who are interested in insects. It includes images of the most common insects with links to details on them, interactive insect-locater images, lesson plans, insect activities, how to collect and preserve insects, and much, much more. The new Web site went public in early March and during that month recorded over 12,000 page views and 1,500 downloads of lesson plans, activity sheets, etc. During April, after being featured in an IFAS News release, on the front page of the IFAS 4-H Web site, in this newsletter and in Pest Alert, the site recorded over 47,015 page views and 6,263 downloads.


Mites as maids in tropical rainforest sweat bee nests? This is the first confirmation of a cleaning relationship between two different species on land. See for details.

The Electronic Mosquito is a skin patch that could one day provide a less-invasive alternative for diabetics who need to take regular samples of their own blood to keep glucose levels in check. See for details.

The media is doing its best to alarm us about swine flu, and perhaps rightly so. Only time will tell. However, according to experts, malaria still kills over one million people per year, or one every 12 seconds. And most of these deaths are of children. Therefore, the news that bioengineered mosquitoes are being used to generate a malaria vaccine is exciting. See for details.

Mycocepurus smithii (Forel) is an attini fungus-growing ant from Latin America. While it has been known as a species for some time, some aspects of its biology recently gave it media attention on Science Daily. Anna Grace Himler, a Ph.D. student at the University of Texas, doing her dissertation on this species noticed something odd. She never saw any males. Mycocepurus smithii is now credited as being the first ant species discovered that has no males. The Wikipedia site on this species at has a link to Dr. Himler's.

For the first time, biologists have shown that female crickets remember attractive males based on the latter's song, and use this information when choosing mates. See for details.

We once thought that ants removed the dead bodies of their colony mates becasue they "smelled dead." However, University of California entomologists have shown that the living ants dispose of the dead ants because they no longer "smell alive." For an explanation of the subtle difference see for details.

The Santa Rosa County, Florida, Master Gardeners were recognized for Kiderpillar School with an "Award of Excellence for Service to 4-H and Other Youth." Kiderpillar School includes a twenty-minute lesson followed by an equal length visit to the vivarium, a 2,000-square-foot enclosure where youth can view Florida native butterflies in a natural environment. See for complete details.

Bug Quote

"In the closing stages of the Thirty Years' War, a Swedish army assaulted Kissengen, a walled city in Bavaria. The desperate defenders responded by throwing beehives off the wall into the ranks of Swedes, who were forced to retreat in the face of stinging attacks from the angry swarm that enveloped them." - from The Greatest War Stories Never Told, by Rick Beyer


Many comic Web sites limit the length of time a panel appears to just 30 days. Others may require you to register to view previous panels, which you may not wish to do. In either case, the sooner you visit the site, the greater chance you have to view the following:

What to really tell prospective graduate students -

How to make the most of lectures -

Newsletter Minutiae

Thomas Fasulo is the newsletter editor. Departmental faculty, staff, students and alumni can submit news anytime to 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, which has instructions for subscribing and unsubscribing. Pam Howell and Nancy Sanders review the newsletter for errors. Thomas Fasulo does the HTML coding.

In the last 12 months, the newsletter Web site recorded 136,477 HTML page views and 25,862 PDF downloads.

May 2009.