Japanese scientists create drone to help with pollination

Scientists at Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology are using the mechanics of cross-pollination with bees to create a drone that can pick up pollen in one flower and bring it to another.

The drone, which is controlled manually, is 4 centimeters wide and weighs about 15 grams. The bottom of the drone is covered with a sticky-gel-coated horsehair that picks up pollen from one flower and rubs them off on another flower. The research team has been able to successfully cross-pollinate Japanese lilies with the drone. Continue reading

Webinar series on bed bugs through March 2

The Midwest Pesticide Action Center is sponsoring a series of expert webinars on bed bugs in Chicago. Although the series focuses on Chicago residents and laws, the subjects of the webinars is applicable to areas outside of Chicago.

The series will discuss practical steps for preventing and treating bed bug infestations Each free, 45-minute presentation will be followed by a 30 minute “Ask the Expert” Q&A. Register at http://bit.ly/MPACwebinars . Continue reading

Position available: Assistant Professor of Row Crop and Forage Entomology

The Division of Plant Sciences in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR) at the University of Missouri (MU) seeks an Assistant Professor and State Extension Specialist in the area of row crop and forage entomology. This is a 12-month, tenure-track faculty position, with an appointment of 70% extension and 30% research, and located on the MU campus in Columbia, MO. Continue reading

USDA Invests $4.8 Million in University Agricultural Programs

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced 19 grants totaling $4,790,100 to support agricultural science programs at non-land-grant universities. The funding is made possible through NIFA’s Capacity Building Grants for Non-Land-Grant Colleges of Agriculture (NLGCA) program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill.

“Our nation’s ability to achieve nutritional security in the context of the multitude of biological and environmental constraints will require continued new discoveries and a cadre of graduates who are prepared to enter the agricultural workforce,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “NIFA investments in supporting transformative research and education at the more than 80 higher education institutions that offer strong agricultural sciences programs is critical.” Continue reading

Spotting and managing target spot

To hear first-hand from an expert about how to manage target spot and some results of research to help, tune in next Monday afternoon at 3 PM for Dr. Austin Hagan’s webinar on target spot. Click here to register.

From an article by Tyson Raper, University of Tennessee, in Cotton Grower

As the cotton specialist for the state of Tennessee, I am constantly on the lookout for potential issues that may impact Mid-South cotton production. Over the past several years, I have occasionally observed several “target spots,” or Corynespora leaf spots, on the lower leaves of rank cotton plants. Although the number of spots and number of affected leaves are typically low, many growers have asked if the disease might be able to cause the 200-400/lb lint per acre yield penalties reported along the Gulf coast. Continue reading

Registration opens North American Invasive Species Forum, May 9-11

Registration is open! Registration is $200 and includes three lunches and two dinners. Early Registration and Hotel Block is available until March 31. Optional Field Trips are available on Thursday Afternoon, May 11 – Saturday, May 13. Space is limited for some trips.

About the Forum

North American Invasive Species Forum – Building Cooperation Across Borders

The North American Invasive Species Forum is a biennial conference encompassing the interests of professionals and organizations involved in invasive species management, research, and regulation in North America. Continue reading

EPA Solicits Proposals for the Field Implementation Meeting Support Cooperative Agreement

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Pesticide Programs is soliciting applications for one or more cooperative agreements to manage a Field Implementation Meetings Support program. EPA expects to provide up to $500,000 annually, depending on the Agency’s budget, for a total of five fiscal years (2017 through 2021).

The cooperative agreement will provide financial assistance to one or more eligible applicants to organize and facilitate dialogue and collaboration on pesticide safety programs, mainly the Certified Applicator regulation and the agricultural Worker Protection Standard. Both regulations aim to reduce the risk of pesticide poisoning and injury among handlers, applicators, bystanders and the public.

EPA must receive proposals through Grants.gov no later than – 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on May 12, 2017. View more information on this Request for Applications (EPA-OPP-2017-002).