Webinar: Bumble Bee Ecology and Conservation

Join the conversation to learn the conservation status of North America’s bumble bees (including the federally endangered rusty patched bumble bee, Bombus affinis), threats they face, and conservation measures known to support healthy bee communities. This webinar will cover the basics of bumble bee ecology and conservation. Participants will learn the status of North America’s nearly 50 species of bumble bees, the threats they face, and the role that important habitat features and land management play in supporting robust bumble bee communities. Participants will also learn basic identification skills as well as the resources available for a more in depth investigation. Learn more…

This webinar is sponsored by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Continue reading

EPA Extends Comment Period for the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Biological Opinion on Chlorpyrifos, Diazinon, and Malathion

In response to numerous requests, EPA is extending the public comment period on the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Biological Opinion on chlorpyrifos, diazinon, and malathion. Please submit comments by July 23, 2018, to the docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2018-0141 at regulations.gov. EPA will share all public comments received on this Biological Opinion with NMFS, and EPA will evaluate them before determining how to proceed.

EPA is seeking comment on the NMFS’s Biological Opinion for chlorpyrifos, diazinon and malathion in accordance with EPA’s public stakeholder process for ESA consultations – an open and transparent process supported by the Services, EPA, and USDA. Stakeholder input is critical to the development of any measures EPA may implement to address risks to listed species and designated critical habitat.  Continue reading

APHIS Updates Federal Domestic Soil Quarantines Map

APHIS updated the Federal Domestic Soil Quarantines Map to include the following changes:

  • Added the Mexican fruit fly quarantine in the Brownsville area of Cameron County, Texas.

APHIS restricts the movement of domestic soil from areas within the continental United States that are under quarantine for specific plant pests. The Federal Domestic Soil Quarantines Map provides an overview of the plant pest quarantines that affect the movement of soil. Continue reading

Jacobs-Young Announces Shanower as Acting NIFA Director

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Acting Deputy Undersecretary for Research, Education, Economics and Acting Chief Scientist Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young announced today that Thomas Shanower will become Acting Director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). Shanower will be replacing outgoing NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy.

“Dr. Shanower brings more than 20 years of experience in scientific research and management, and he will maintain a steady hand at the helm of NIFA,” said Dr. Jacobs-Young. “NIFAs’ support of the best and brightest scientists has resulted in groundbreaking discoveries that combat childhood obesity, improve rural economic growth, address water availability issues, increase food production, explore new sources of energy, mitigate climate variability and ensure food safety. We salute Dr. Ramaswamy for his tireless enthusiasm at NIFA in support of agriculture-related research and education.” Continue reading

Citrus Disease Research and Extension (CDRE)

The Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) Citrus Disease Research and Extension Program (CDRE) is authorized in the Agricultural Act of 2014 (H.R. 2642) to award grants to eligible entities to conduct research and extension activities, technical assistance and development activities to: (a) combat citrus diseases and pests, both domestic and invasive and including huanglongbing and the Asian citrus psyllid, which pose imminent harm to United States citrus production and threaten the future viability of the citrus industry; and (b) provide support for the dissemination and commercialization of relevant information, techniques, and technologies discovered pursuant to research and extension activities funded through SCRI/CDRE and other research and extension projects targeting problems caused by citrus production diseases and invasive pests. Continue reading

Food Safety Outreach Program

The Food Safety Outreach Program will complement and expand the national infrastructure of the National Food Safety Training, Education, Extension, Outreach, and Technical Assistance Competitive Grants Program. The Food Safety Outreach Program will build upon that national infrastructure, with a sustained focus on delivery of customized training to members of the target audiences. Awardees will develop and implement food safety training, education, extension, outreach and technical assistance projects that address the needs of owners and operators of small to mid-sized farms, beginning farmers, socially-disadvantaged farmers, small processors, or small fresh fruit and vegetable merchant wholesalers. Grant applications will be solicited directly from those in local communities to include those from community-based organizations, non-governmental organizations, food hubs, farm cooperatives, extension, and other local groups. Continue reading

CDRE 2018 call for pre-applications is open

The FY 2018 Citrus Disease Research and Extension (CDRE) is now available for public viewing. 

NIFA Funding Opportunity Page: https://www.nifa.usda.gov/funding-opportunity/citrus-disease-research-and-extension-cdre.

Grants.gov Page: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=303677.   

This page includes a synopsis of the funding opportunity, a link to the full announcement (RFPA) and the application package.