Forestry Program Coordinator opening

The Department of Forestry and Fire Management (DFFM) is looking for a Forestry Program Coordinator to join our Cooperative Forestry Team.  You will be a key component for implementation of a comprehensive and robust statewide forest health program.  Major position emphasis will be in forest health, though you may also work in other general grant-funded forestry-related functions including:  urban forestry, invasive species management, fire-wise implementation, conservation education; public outreach; forest inventory; forest land management plan assistance; forest stewardship; geographical information systems mapping; and fuels mitigation.

This position is based in Phoenix, Arizona. Continue reading

New strains of late blight bring potential threat

in Southwest Farm Press

Scientific research of Phytophthora infestans, or late blight, has been an issue of concern ever since the plant disease triggered the Irish potato famine of the 1840s. Plant pathologists say it was the first plant disease for which a microorganism was proved to be the causal agent, leading to the birth of plant pathology as a science.

The fungal-like organism that causes late blight affects both tomatoes and potatoes. Unlike the other 60 Phytophthora species that produce soil-borne, root-rotting diseases, late blight infects foliage, stems, potato tubers and tomato fruits. Lesions can occur on both leaves and stems, and usually occur after periods of wet weather. Continue reading

GPDN Webinar this week: Introduction to Bacterial Leaf Streak Disease of Corn

This Wednesday, February 8, 2017 at 9:00am MT/10:00am CT/11:00am ET from the Montana State University site:

Dr. Tamra Jackson-Ziems of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln will be presenting: “Introduction to Bacterial Leaf Streak Disease of Corn” Continue reading

UK entomologist discusses kissing bug, impact on Kentucky

by Katie Pratt, University of Kentucky

The kissing bug may sound like a virus that plagues the protagonist of a romantic comedy, but in fact, these insects are real, and one species does occur in Kentucky. These blood-feeding insects have received a lot of media attention due to the potential health effects of their bites in the southwestern United States. University of Kentucky extension entomologist Lee Townsend recently discussed what Kentuckians need to know about the insect.

“A species of kissing bug lives in Kentucky, but the insect is not commonly seen. It occurs in wooded areas where it lives in the dens of various animals,” said Townsend, a faculty member in the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. “At UK, we have only occasionally received adults that were captured from inside homes, usually near or in wooded areas. Few bites have been reported. Kissing bugs will fly to outdoor lights, especially in the fall, and some will found ways inside.” Continue reading

Options to address ryegrass for warm-season forage production

by Adam Russell, Texas A&M AgriLife

Producers hoping to mitigate annual ryegrass growth for warm-season hay production have options and should start sooner than later, said a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service expert.

Annual ryegrass, a cool-season forage, is often utilized by livestock producers for winter grazing, said Dr. Vanessa Corriher-Olson, AgriLife Extension forage specialist, Overton. However, East Texas hay producers often view it as an unwanted species that competes with Bermuda and Bahia grasses, she said. Continue reading

New wheat streak mosaic virus resistance genetic markers developed

by Kay Ledbetter, Texas A&M AgriLife

The Wsm2 gene is located on chromosome 3BS in wheat and most recently eight tightly linked flanking markers have been identified and mapped.

To most, that means very little. To Texas A&M AgriLife Research geneticists and breeders, it’s the key to battling one of the most important biotic stresses affecting wheat. Continue reading