Tawny Crazy Ant Spreading Across Gulf States

From the School IPM 2015 Newsletter

An invasive ant species is growing in numbers and range in Gulf Coast states. Formerly known as the raspberry crazy ant, the tawny crazy ant, Nylanderia fulva, was first spotted in Texas in 2002. Named for their random, nonlinear movement when looking for food, the crazy ant is sometimes found in electrical equipment and household appliances. Studies have shown that the tawny crazy ant is able to sheath itself in protective acid that allows them outcompete fire ants and other ant species, moving them up to the number one pest concern where they are present. Continue reading

Chikungunya is in South Carolina

Chikungunya has raised its ugly head in South Carolina with the return of medical students who contracted the disease while on a medical mission to Haiti. Symptoms are similar to influenza, with prominent malaise and muscle aches; treatment is symptomatic. There is no preventive vaccine. Since transmission is by infected mosquitoes (infected as a result of a blood meal from a person with the disease), there’s little or no danger of further transmission in South Carolina at this time, but  four cases of local transmission have occurred in Florida (the only state in the US with documented secondary cases, as of last week).

For more detail about the disease and its epidemiology, visit the CDC’s discussion at: http://www.cdc.gov/chikungunya/geo/united-states.html

Northeastern IPM Center hiring two positions

Two positions are open:

Extension Educator (Extension Support Specialist II – Northeastern IPM Center; Ithaca, New York)

The extension educator will contribute to the goals of Cooperative Extension to strengthen communities and address housing conditions that threaten human health; support the growth of interest in IPM for low-income housing; partner with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Regional IPM Centers and State IPM programs.

Program/Evaluations Specialist (Extension Support Specialist II – Northeastern IPM Center; Ithaca, New York)

The Program/Evaluation Specialist will enhance connections with existing stakeholders and build rapport with underserved audiences. Contribute to the strategic planning for the NEIPM Center. Serve as a liaison to IPM working groups, assess the status of and need for IPM courses and certification programs.

The Northeastern Integrated Pest Management Center (NortheastIPM.org) supports Integrated Pest Management (IPM) projects in agricultural and community settings that promote environmental, human health, and economic benefits.  Based in Ithaca, New York, the Center encourages multistate, cross-disciplinary connections that build partnerships and strengthen public and private IPM programs in a 12-state region. Seven staff members work as a team on IPM training, outreach, networking, proposal writing and documenting impacts.


Take steps to prevent blue mold in Eastern Kentucky

Tobacco growers with recently topped plants and those still needing to be topped should take measures to prevent blue mold development, said Bob Pearce, extension tobacco specialist with the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.

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Hamer Research Team Collaborates to Protect Endangered Whooping Crane Populations from Vector-Borne Parasites

by Rob Williams

A collaboration among Dr. Gabriel Hamer’s Research Team in the Department of Entomology, the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Science, and the International Crane Foundation is helping to save the whooping crane populations by studying vector-borne parasites in both whooping and sandhill cranes in the United States and Canada.

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Online School IPM Curriculum Available—with educational credits

IPM professionals who need to boost their continuing education credits or work toward license renewal now have a way to get them without traveling long distances to attend an expensive workshop. Thanks to a new web-based school IPM course curriculum developed by Texas A&M AgriLife specialists, school IPM coordinators, animal control and code enforcement officers, and pest management professionals can get training and continuing education credits without ever leaving their desks.

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Field Diagnosis of Key Diseases & Insect Pests in Vegetables

This course will take place at the Madren Conference Center and Clemson University Organic Farm Clemson, SC, September 11, 2014, 9am – 4:30pm.

This one-day course will focus on field diagnosis of key diseases and insect pests affecting vegetable crops in South Carolina and the region. Participants will learn about techniques for sampling and identification of key diseases and their symptoms, and for insect pests and their natural enemies. Participants will gain experience with field monitoring of disease and insect pests on vegetables at the Clemson Organic Farm, and with instruction will practice disease and insect identification using stereo microscopes and hand lenses. All participants will receive a hand lens to take home. Lunch will be provided, and there will be ample time for questions and discussion about disease and insect problems and solutions. Continue reading

Mid-south still battling sugarcane aphid

From Delta Farm Press

As harvest nears, the white sugarcane aphid continues its residency in much of the Mid-South’s grain sorghum.

“This pest jumps out pretty quickly,” said Nick Seiter, University of Arkansas entomologist. “It can hit high numbers very quickly. There have been a lot of acres sprayed for it. At least half the crop has been sprayed or should have been. It’s become a major concern for milo throughout the state.”

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EPA Releases Best Practices Guidance and Hosts Webinars on Reducing Pesticide Use and Saving Money in Schools

To help school administrators and staff reduce pesticide use and costs, EPA has released “Model Pesticide Safety and IPM Guidance Policy.” EPA will also launch a series of webinars beginning on August 20, 2014.

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IPM Success Stories from EPA

Many school districts have already adopted an IPM program with measurable success!

Walla Walla School District. With only two groundskeepers, the Walla Walla district is successfully implementing an excellent IPM program at all 10 of its schools! The success of Walla Walla schools demonstrates that IPM practices can be implemented successfully with limited resources if staff are appropriately trained. http://www.ipminstitute.org/IPM_Star/ipmstar_profiles_wallawalla_wa.htm

Salt Lake City School District. When Salt Lake City Schools decided to implement an IPM program, they elected to use an innovative Web-based application called iPestManager for pest reporting and education. With the use of this program, the district saw pest complaints and pesticide applications decline by more than 90 percent within the first 3 years. https://aal.slcschools.org/pls/apex/f?p=118:1:1413189505891808 http://www.ipminstitute.org/IPM_Star/ipmstar_profiles_salt_lake_city.htm Continue reading