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2016 Newsletter: Center for Pollinator Research

We have had a very productive and exciting year at the CPR! Please enjoy a copy of our 2016 newsletter, with highlights of the great research, education and extension projects we have led, and the students and postdocs who made this work possible! Special thanks to Katy Evans and Philip Moore for compiling this.

Pesticide Additive Could Be One Culprit in Bee Deaths

A common pesticide additive, known as an "inert" ingredient, could be one of the causes of the die-offs beekeepers have observed in their hives. Christopher Intagliata reports.

Gary Felton named new Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Chemical Ecology

In a Letter from the Editor in the latest issue of the Journal of Chemical Ecology, John Romeo, who has served as Editor-in-Chief for the journal over the past couple of decades, announced that he is stepping down and that Gary Felton of Penn State University will take over in this position beginning with the February issue of the Journal. Romeo stated, “Gary brings breadth, leadership, and experience to the Journal, as well as a commitment to keeping our standards high and continuing to raise our profile in the competitive publishing arena. I am pleased and confident that the Journal is in good hands.”

Trump’s Hiring Freeze Could Imperil Breakthrough Discovery On Bees

The president’s early actions have created uncertainty for the country’s scientists, and could be standing in the way of important research.

Authentic Plant Pollinator Landscape Research for Educators (APPL-RED) Workshop

A unique teacher professional development experience for middle and high school teachers. July 24-28, 2017

Student Research Spotlight - Angela Coco

This is the 1st of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

A Bee Mogul Confronts the Crisis in His Field

KERN COUNTY, Calif. — A soft light was just beginning to outline the Tejon Hills as Bret Adee counted rows of wizened almond trees under his breath.

Bug Camp for Kids 2017 - Registration is now open!

Bug Camp for Kids is an educational day camp for eight- to eleven-year-olds. Taught by faculty, staff, and graduate students from the Department of Entomology, the camp offers opportunities for students to observe and collect insects and participate in laboratory exercises to learn a broad range of biological, ecological, and environmental topics.

Grower Spotlight: Brian Campbell Farms

Over the past four years, Project ICP has partnered with specialty crop growers across the country to carry out on-farm research on the pollination and yield of fruit, nut, and vegetable crops. Many of these growers, including Brian Campbell of Brian Campbell Farms in central Pennsylvania, are going beyond the scope of Project ICP’s research to test and implement innovative practices to improve crop pollination – and their bottom line.

Student Research Spotlight - Ryan Reynolds

This is the 2nd of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Student Research Spotlight - Emily Sandall

This is the 3rd of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

News from the Eastern Branch ESA Meeting

Our students had great success at the Eastern Branch Entomological Society of America meeting in Rhode Island.

Scientists Have Some Wild Ideas for Solving Our Big Bee Problem

Last year the U.S. lost a mind-boggling 44 percent of its honeybee colonies. Certain bee species — including the rusty-patched bumblebee and Hawaiian yellow-faced bees — are on the brink of extinction. Even "Buzz the Bee" disappeared from Honey Nut Cheerios boxes earlier this month because General Mills decided removing the familiar mascot could help spotlight the problem.

Student Research Spotlight - Brandon Gominho

This is the 4th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Student Research Spotlight - Brianna Flonc

This is the 5th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Researchers Take Aim at Insecticide-Resistant Bedbugs

There's a potential new weapon in the fight against the scourge of travelers everywhere -- bedbugs. Researchers from North Carolina State University and Penn State say they have created a fungal "biopesticide" to battle even the strongest bedbugs.

The Morning Mixtape: Pollinators & Pesticides

Entomologists Dr. Christina Grozinger and Dr. John Tooker are tonight’s speakers at Science On Tap, sponsored by the PSU Science Policy Society. It takes place at 7 pm at Liberty Craft House. Grozinger and Tooker joined Karly Regan on the Mixtape to talk about saving pollinators and reducing pesticide use.

Waking From Hibernation, the Hard Work of Spring Begins

For animals that hibernate, making it to spring is no small feat. Torpor — the state of reduced bodily activity that occurs during hibernation — is not restful. By the time they emerge, hibernating animals are often sleep-deprived: Most expend huge bursts of energy to arouse themselves occasionally in the winter so their body temperatures don’t dip too low. This back-and-forth is exhausting, and hibernators do it with little to no food and water. By winter’s end, some have shed more than half their body weight.

Penn State researchers receive NIH funding to explore malaria transmission in Southeast Asia

Researchers at Penn State have received more than $1 million in first-year funding from the National Institutes of Health to investigate malaria transmission in Southeast Asia with a goal of working toward the disease's elimination in the region. They will receive up to approximately $9 million over seven years for this project.

Former Student in the news

It is our great pleasure to tell you that the Fisher Prize Committee of the SSE has selected Megan Greischar as this year's Fisher Prize winner for her paper, "Predicting optimal transmission investment in malaria parasites.”

Ticks coming early, fast and furious in Pa.

Veterinarian Daniel Oliver diagnosed his first case of Lyme disease in a dog this season last Saturday. “The dog had a mild to moderate fever, was achy and sore and was not eating. He was not acting himself,” said Oliver, who is part of a six-doctor team at Greencastle Veterinary Hospital. “Our in-house test for exposure to Lyme disease was positive.

Penn State Extension: The Buzz

April 2017 Newsletter

Student Research Spotlight - Hillary Morin

his is the 6th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Dr. Andrew Read gives Graduate School Commencement Speech

Andrew F. Read, Ph.D., Evan Pugh Professor of Biology and Entomology and Eberly Professor of Biotechnology, was the keynote speaker for this year's Graduate School commencement ceremony held on May 7, 2017.

Buzzworthy: How you can help America's pollinators

The mysterious disappearance of honeybees known as colony collapse disorder no longer is the threat that it once was. But bees of all stripes still need a little help.

Student Research Spotlight - Tyler Jones

This is the 7th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

How you can help save the bees and help pollinator research in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania has one of the highest bee colony losses in the country, with about 45 to 50 percent of colonies dying. Scientists are researching colony collapse disorder and trying to stop it. You can help. There are two citizen science projects in the research lab of Margarita Lopez-Uribe, Penn State extension apiculturist.

Student Research Spotlight - Alexandra Duffy

This is the 8th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

How to create a butterfly garden

Butterfly gardens can add a splash of color to your yard, while the butterflies themselves are good for the local ecosystem. They are crop and flower pollinators, who play an important role in the food chain.

Pa lawmakers hear the plight of beekeepers

For years, beekeepers have been trying to raise the alarm on the declining population of bees, which play a big role in pollinating our crops. On Monday, Pennsylvania lawmakers on the Joint Legislation Conservation Committee heard testimony on the challenges facing beekeepers in the commonwealth.

Higher tick populations or not, take precautions against Lyme disease

Recent media reports have suggested that tick populations in Pennsylvania may be particularly high this year, leading to an increased risk of Lyme disease in the state.

Slugging it out with a new contender in the GMO debate

It was the closest thing you get to a blind date between a scientist and a journalist.

Student Research Spotlight - Alexandra Duffy

This is the 9th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

WRAIR and ASTMH: 2nd Annual Alan Magill Malaria Forum

On June 9, the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research held its Second Annual Malaria Forum in tribute to the late Alan Magill (Col., Ret.). In partnership with ASTMH, this annual event focused on malaria elimination and highlighted the themes of Discovery and Mentorship, two of Alan's passions.

Student Research Spotlight - Emily Erickson

This is the 10th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Student Research Spotlight - Hannah Stewart

This is the 11th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Widely Used Pesticide Is a Buzzkill for Honeybees

Findings add fuel to the debate over whether a commonly used chemical damages insect populations

Student Research Spotlight - Julie Baniszewski

This is the 12th of thirteen short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Scientist Discusses Global Pollinator Crisis

Wednesday evening the Wild Center with AdkAction hosted a presentation by Dr. Christina Grozinger, distinguished professor of entomology and director of the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State University. The research center is home to the largest group of pollinator researchers in the world. Following a reception at 6 p.m., Groizinger addressed an attentive audience from 7-8 p.m., a lecture that will be repeated Thursday evening at the View in Old Forge. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Student Research Spotlight - Elizabeth Davidson-Lowe

This is the 13th, and final, of the short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

The Morning Mixtape: Insects! Bugs!

John Tooker and Elizabeth Rowen from the Penn State Department of Entomology talk about insects: what they are, why we need them, and why reaching for your shoe when you see a bug might not be the right move. This is the first installment of a monthly entomology series that will air on the second Wednesday of each month.

Grant enables study of mosquito virus as a genetic lab tool, malaria biocontrol

A virus that infects a species of malaria-transmitting mosquito could help scientists gain a better understanding of mosquito biology and eventually could lead to methods for stopping or slowing the spread of the disease, according to a researcher in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

Researchers win funding for new tomatoes, wood packaging pest treatment

RAIN grants from the College of Agricultural Sciences' Entrepreneurship & Innovation Program aimed at moving solutions from lab to marketplace

Core Concept: Probing the phytobiome to advance agriculture

The Colorado potato beetle had Gary Felton stumped. Felton, an entomologist at Pennsylvania State University, has built his career on revealing how plants defend themselves against voracious insects. Plants often detect chemicals in an insect’s oral secretions and respond by producing proteins that wreak havoc on insect digestion and nutrient absorption.

Plant 'smells' insect foe, initiates defense

It cannot run away from the fly that does it so much damage, but tall goldenrod can protect itself by first "smelling" its attacker and then initiating its defenses, according to an international team of researchers.

Maintaining the Right-of-Way in the Right Way

Faculty, staff, and students partner with energy and vegetation-management representatives to measure the impact of right-of-ways on local wildlife.

Grad Student Seeks Solution for Pollinator Decline

With the decline of insect pollinators alarming scientists, Emily Erickson, a Penn State doctoral student in entomology, is focused on a conservation solution.

Bug enthusiasts swarm to the Great Insect Fair

Campus may seem quiet on an away game weekend, but on Saturday, just north of Beaver Stadium, the Snider Agricultural Arena was buzzing with excitement. Every year, the Department of Entomology hosts The Great Insect Fair, a celebration of all things creepy and crawly that aims to both amuse and educate. Stations lined the arena with activities for bug enthusiasts young and old, including honey tasting, insect-related crafts, a butterfly tent, and educators excited to share their knowledge.

Cricket cookies, carnivorous plants of Pennsylvania and more at Penn State's Great Insect Fair

Thousands of families turned out for the annual Great Insect Fair in Penn State’s Snider Ag Arena on Saturday, September 23. They encountered strange insects they thought only existed in movies, tasted fired waxworms and baked crickets, and learned about the often unseen of insects.

Platform for Big Data in Agriculture: Presenting our winners of the Inspire Challenge

We are proud to present the five winners of our US$100K Inspire Challenge grant.

Agriculture Department, Penn State Researchers Seek Public Input on State Pollinator Protection Plan

Harrisburg, PA – Farmers, gardeners and other Pennsylvanians concerned about the health of pollinators given their critically important role growing and producing food now have the chance to comment on a draft of the state’s proposed Pollinator Protection Plan. The plan, developed by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State University is designed to protect bees and other insects that pollinate nearly 75 percent of the commonwealth’s food crops.

Phone-Powered AI Spots Sick Plants With Remarkable Accuracy

Amanda Ramcharan, Ph.D. candidate in agricultural and biological engineering, and David Hughes, associate professor of entomology and biology, talk about a mobile app they helped to develop that can help farmers diagnose crop diseases.

New York Post (via A.P.): The bacteria in a mosquito’s gut may rid us of malaria

This Associated Press story, which also appeared in the New York Times and other outlets, quotes Jason Rasgon, professor of entomology.

2018 Graduate Student Recruitment Weekend

By invitation only - Travel expenses for eligible applicants will be paid by the Penn State Entomology Department. Apply by December 20th for priority consideration!

Beware the invasion of venomous caterpillars

Beware the white hickory tussock moth caterpillar. It’s the time of year the crawling critters, with their distinctive furry white and black markings, are most noticeable, said Dr. Michael Skvarla, Ph.D., director of the Penn State Department of Entomology Insect Identification Lab. Despite the fuzzy appearance, contact with the caterpillar and their hair could leave people with a red, itchy rash similar to the results from a close encounter with poison ivy, Skvarla said.

The Morning Mixtape: “Wanna study bugs with me?” “I do.”

Jared Ali and Sara Hermann are entomologists at Penn State, and they’re also married. Their research is focused on growing safer food. We also learn how they met.

New app diagnoses crop diseases and notifies farmers

Technology will help farmers identify crop diseases and the nearest support system

What's the buzz? Pennsylvania developing plan to help save the bees

Beekeeping was simpler 30 years ago, when Ron Bogansky first set up hives on the small hobby farm he shares with his wife.

Penn State Extension: The Buzz

November 2017 Newsletter

Scientists Were All Wrong About That Zombie Ant Fungus on 'Planet Earth'

An early episode of the beloved BBC show Planet Earth made it clear that Cordyceps fungus is one of the most gruesome killers in the world. Forget sharks, bears, lions, or whatever that gleaming pair of eyes hiding in the bushes might be. Targeting insects, the terrifying parasitic fungus infects their bodies and controls their movements, eventually killing them and using their discarded corpses to breed its spawn.

What makes zombie ants obey

Yesterday (November 8, 2017), researchers at Penn State University released new information about one of Earth’s weirdest natural phenomena: zombie ants. These are carpenter ants in tropical locations, infiltrated and controlled by Ophiocordyceps unilateralis sensu lato, sometimes called zombie ant fungus. This fungal body-snatcher forces ants to a forest understory and compels them to climb vegetation and bite into the underside of leaves or twigs, where the ants die. The invasion culminates with the sprouting of a spore-laden fruiting body from a dead ant’s head. The fungus thereby benefits because infectious spores are released onto the ground below, where they can infect other foraging ants. The new research shows that the fungal parasite accomplishes all this without infecting the ants’ brains.

ESA Names Recipients of 2017 Professional and Student Awards

The Entomological Society of America is pleased to announce the winners of its 2017 awards. The awards recognize scientists, educators, and students who have distinguished themselves through their contributions to entomology. Winners were honored at Entomology 2017, November 5-8, in Denver, Colorado.

Puppeteer Parasite That Creates Zombie Ants Hijacks Their Bodies—Not Brains

In a macabre discovery, scientists have found that a parasite, which creates armies of zombie ants, does so by hijacking their bodies—not their brains as was previously thought.

New species of wasp found in Maine

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry’s Maine Forest Service announced that a new species of wasp has been found in Maine. Hillary Morin Peterson of Brunswick Maine discovered a new species of Pteromalidae wasp while conducting her thesis work in collaboration with the Maine Forest Service. The new discovery is detailed in a recently published paper.

Penn State team receives $7M award to enlist insects as allies for food security

A Penn State-led research team is hoping to enlist insects as allies in an effort to make crops more tolerant of environmental stressors, after the crops are already growing in the greenhouse or field.

COMB, Conventional & Organic Management of Bees Stakeholder Meeting

On November 17, 2017 stakeholders from across Pennsylvania converged to State College to discuss beekeeping protocols for our upcoming research project.

Researchers Develop App to Alert Farmers of Crop Diseases

A grant to refine a mobile application (app) that will use artificial intelligence to detect crop diseases and the alert farmers on the diagnosis has been secured.

Penn State Department of Entomology offers insect identification services

With more than a million different species of insects in the world, it is no wonder that bugs "bug" us.

Ways to protect against bugs from coming in on Christmas trees

Each year nationwide, families bring trees into their homes hoping to bring some Christmas joy and cheer, but what some people don't know is that they might be bringing in some unwanted house guests.

Bed Bug Prevention Method Developed In Pennsylvania Seeing Positive Results

Move over stink bugs, bed bugs are back in the prime pest spotlight. They actually never went away, but instead have continued to grow as an issue for anyone who lays their head down at night to sleep.

Doug Sponsler Talks about the Risk of Pesticides to Honey Bees and Ecotoxicology

Listen in as we go over pesticide’s effects on pollinators, the difficulties in testing, and the advantages certain insects have in fighting pesticides.

Online beekeeping course offered

Beginner and experienced beekeepers and those thinking about taking up backyard beekeeping can get the information they need to be successful from Beekeeping 101, an online beekeeping course offered by Penn State Extension.

State officials work to contain spread of destructive lanternflies

Over the past three years, an invasive insect, native to China and eastern parts of Asia, has been recognized as a serious threat to agriculture and businesses in Pennsylvania.

New research agenda for malaria elimination and eradication

Two Penn State researchers have participated in the formulation of a new updated research agenda for global malaria elimination and eradication. Together with more than 180 scientists, malaria program leaders, and policy makers from around the world, Manuel Llinás, professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, and Jason Rasgon, professor of entomology and disease epidemiology, contributed to the Malaria Eradication Research Agenda (malERA) Refresh Collection, which defines a forward-looking research and development agenda that will accelerate progress towards malaria elimination and global eradication. The malERA Refresh collaboration resulted in seven research papers that were recently published as a special collection in the journal PLOS Medicine.

Agriculture Department, Penn State Release Recommendations to Maintain Healthy, Diverse Pollinator Populations

Standing in front of one of the more popular exhibits at the Pennsylvania Farm Show—an educational display on the importance of bees to society—state Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today helped unveil a new report intended to support healthy pollinator populations in the face of challenges that have decimated some species.

Stink Bug Enemy a Welcome Find

A major natural enemy of the destructive brown marmorated stink bug has been found in Pennsylvania, but don’t expect pest pressure to lessen any time soon.

It Takes a Colony - The value of supporting research for the greater public good

Surveys of U.S. beekeepers have documented a 28 percent decline (on average) in honey bee colonies each winter during the last ten years, and a 28-45 percent decline (on average) during the full year. In Pennsylvania, beekeepers reported a loss of 52 percent of their colonies over the last winter (2016-2017).

Wilkerson reaps more than knowledge from Penn State’s graduate program

Rhea County native Megan Wilkerson is nearing the completion of her work in the graduate studies program at Penn State University, but the time she has spent in the program has included much more than classroom work and library study.

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue visits Penn State

As Congress prepares to enact a new five-year farm bill, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue paid a visit to Penn State's University Park campus Jan. 24 as part of a tour through Pennsylvania to unveil the Department of Agriculture's legislative principles. Perdue met with College of Agricultural Sciences faculty, students and administrators and visited research facilities.

Penn State Beekeepers Club And The Quest To #SaveTheBees

We all know the hashtag #SaveTheBees as a meme that has infiltrated the internet and taken Twitter by storm. We’ve even seen students at home football games hanging signs advocating for the little guys. But why do the bees need saving? How can we save the bees? And why should we care about the dwindling populations of the stinging, buzzing insects?

PolliNation Podcast: Mehmet Ali Döke – How Honey Bees Survive The Winter

Mehmet Ali Döke earned his bachelor’s in Molecular Biology and Genetics, and master’s in Biology from Middle East Technical University in Turkey. During his junior year, he started working with honey bees and was a part of the group who surveyed the beekeepers in Turkey to document bee losses and possible reasons in coordination with the COLOSS effort. In his master’s, Mehmet investigated the seasonal variation of a metabolic enzyme in honey bees.

Terrifying Parasitic Wasps Knife Their Way Out of Bug Corpses With Spikes on Their Backs

Wasps have a bad reputation for their sharp stingers, but a new species of wasp appears to take inflicting pain to a whole new level. Scientists believe the parasitic wasp grows up in another animal's body and then, once it reaches adulthood, saws its way through the host's body to freedom, according to a recent paper published in Biodiversity Data Journal.

A bad new bug, a glowing plant, and flytraps without flies: The latest in gardening research

Let's peek into the science labs this week to see what gardening researchers have discovered lately that affects how we garden:

Maryland braces for invasion of lanternflies, races to slow their spread

Mary Kay Malinoski has seen plenty of harmful insects swarm into Maryland during her long career, from the tree-eating gypsy moth, which invaded in the 1980s, to the malodorous brown marmorated stink bug, which arrived in 2006.

Newly Discovered Fungi Turn Ants Into Zombies and Use Them to Breed

Mushrooms have always been a risky dinner menu option: Sure, plenty of them are delicious, but some are deadly. Ants stumbling on the wrong type of fungus can meet an even grimmer fate: These organisms can take control of the insects, forcing them to kill themselves. And scientists have just identified another 15 fungi with this gruesome talent.

Curious Wasp Specimen Leads Entomologist to Find a First

When Michael Skvarla, Ph.D., started at his job as Insect Identifier and Extension Educator at Penn State University in 2017, it wasn’t long before he had a mystery on his hands.

Researchers to study ramps' market, flavor profile, vulnerability to pest

A good way to describe ramps, it has been said, is to note what they are not. Ramps are not leeks, nor are they scallions or shallots. Ramps look like scallions, but they're smaller and have one or two broad, flat leaves.

Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research Awards $7 Million to 16 Research Teams Advancing Science and Technology to Improve Pollinator Health

New Tools and Science-Based Best Practices Will Enhance Efforts to Combat Native and Managed Pollinator Population Declines

Invasive insects invade PA/Chesapeake Bay update

Insects that aren't native to Pennsylvania have invaded the state's forests, farm fields and homes and new ones appear every few years.

Does winter's harsh cold air mean lower tick activity during spring, summer?

Areas that have had harsh winter weather are most likely looking forward to the summer months that are filled with sunshine and warmth. But with sunny, warm weather comes bugs, ticks included.

Infected ‘zombie ants’ shuffle through colony undetected

Carpenter ants don’t attack or isolate their nest mates infected with a specialized parasitic fungus, and instead continue to share the colony’s food resources until the infected ants leave the nest for the last time to die, according to a new study.

Lures lead to better moth management

Growers who use mating disruption for oriental fruit moths now have a lure that effectively monitors the pests, according to new research.

Put a ghost in your orchard to keep away brown marmorated stink bugs

Some apple orchards in Pennsylvania were surrounded by benevolent ghosts last year: a length of specially treated netting draped over a shepherd’s hook. Each successfully drew in and then killed hundreds of brown marmorated stink bugs.

Penn State researchers tackling mushroom phorid fly infestations

Working with mushroom growers and residents in southern Chester County, Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences is ramping up ongoing research efforts to alleviate mushroom phorid fly infestations in southeastern Pennsylvania.

Invasive insect spreads beyond Pennsylvania farms and orchards to backyards

Add another invader to the list of destructive insects that have infiltrated Pennsylvania: The spotted lanternfly has joined the ranks of emerald ash borers and brown marmorated stink bugs.

Zombie Apocalypse: Ants Can't Tell When Their Colony Is Overrun by a Deadly Fungus

Carpenter ants appear to have a hard time figuring out when one of their own is infected with a parasite that will eventually make it kill itself. Researchers from Pennsylvania State University published their findings February 23 in PLoS One.

Investment from Skip Smith to launch construction of Pollinators' Garden

Investment from Penn State alumnus and leading philanthropist Charles H. “Skip” Smith will enable The Arboretum at Penn State to fulfill its longstanding vision for a garden that will attract and sustain native pollinator species of birds and insects. Smith, whose founding gift launched construction of the Arboretum in 2010, has made a series of gifts totaling $4.5 million to support construction of a new and enhanced Pollinators’ Garden in the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens. The gifts — together with commitments from other donors — complete the project’s initial fundraising goal of $5.3 million and will allow construction to begin.

$1M gift from Galen and Nancy Dreibelbis to support Pollinators' Garden

A generous commitment from local leaders will help The Arboretum at Penn State to move forward with its plans for a world-class pollinators’ garden. State College real estate developer Galen Dreibelbis, and his wife, Nancy, have committed $1 million to support construction of the new Pollinators’ Garden in the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens. The Dreibelbises’ gift — together with a major investment from Skip Smith and gifts from other donors — completes the project’s initial fundraising goal and will allow the University to break ground on the project.

WAMU-FM (NPR), Washington, D.C.: Pollinator -- Judgment Day

Margarita Lopez-Uribe, assistant professor of entomology, was a guest on the "1A" program to discuss pollinator health and the importance of feral bee species

Wyman’s of Maine: 2017 Sustainability Report

Sustainability rests on the principle that the needs of the present must be met without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It is Wyman’s core belief that Economic Profitability, Environmental Health, and Social Equity together build a sustainable company future.

Cockroach infestation on campus leaves student residents plagued with pests.

Thousands of unwanted guests have moved into Cal State LA’s campus housing, forcing Cal State LA residents to fight off an infestation of American cockroaches.

Read recognized with 2018 President’s Award for Academic Integration

Andrew Read, Evan Pugh University Professor of Biology and Entomology in the Eberly College of Science and the College of Agricultural Sciences, has been awarded the 2018 President’s Award for Excellence in Academic Integration.

Discovery Space’s Bee Hive Exhibit

The new Hive exhibit at Discovery Space allows young children to act out the social lives of bees. Children can wear a bee costume, buzz over to larger-than-life flowers to collect pollen and nectar, take the nectar into the hive and do the waggle dance.

Faculty Spotlight - Tanya Renner

This is the 1st of ten short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

5 ways you can offset declining bee populations with your garden

As you plan your spring garden, consider adding pollinator-friendly trees and plants to provide food and habitat for bee populations that are in decline across the country and worldwide.

Lanternfly Research to Aid Grape Growers

When the spotted lanternfly showed up in Berks County four years ago, grapes were one of the first crops researchers worried about.

Faculty Spotlight - Julie Urban

This is the 2nd of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

Busy Bees: Penn Staters share how they protect pollinators

Most people have probably seen the phrase “bees are dying at an alarming rate” on the internet. Most pass it off as a joke, but one Penn State organization is taking it to heart.

Andrew Read elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Andrew Read, Evan Pugh University Professor of Biology and Entomology in Penn State's Eberly College of Science and the College of Agricultural Sciences, has been elected as a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS).

Entomology professor mentors summer interns to awards, success

A summer intern from Virginia State University — working in the lab of James Tumlinson, Ralph O. Mumma Professor of Entomology in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences — has presented an award-winning lecture in the Emerging Researchers National Conference in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics in Washington, D.C., on the research they conducted during their summer at Penn State.

Virus inhibits immune response of caterpillars and plants

It is well known that certain wasps suppress the immune systems of their caterpillar hosts so they can successfully raise their young within those hosts. Now researchers at Penn State show that, in addition to suppressing caterpillar immune systems, wasps also suppress the defense mechanisms of the plants on which the caterpillars feed, which ensures that the caterpillars will continue to provide a suitable environment for the wasps' offspring.

Penn State Insect Research Represented at the 2018 Eastern Branch Entomological Society of America Meeting

Students and faculty from Penn State’s Departments of Entomology, Biology, and Plant Science attended the 89th Annual Meeting of the Eastern Branch of the Entomological Society of America (EB ESA). The meeting was held March 17-19, 2018 at the Westin Annapolis Hotel in Annapolis, Maryland, where the National ESA Headquarters is located.

Faculty Spotlight: Jason Rasgon and Christina Grozinger

This is the 3rd of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

Researchers aim to develop best practices for organic beekeeping

A nearly $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture will support Penn State researchers in determining best management practices for organic beekeeping by comparing organic and chemical-free to conventional management systems.

Spotted lanternfly swarm about to hit Berks again (PHOTO GALLERY)

They're preparing to hatch, and wreak havoc on the county, as officials mull new ideas to control them.

Bedbugs a ‘part of your future’

Infestations common problem for first responders. Bedbugs, unlike mosquitoes, don’t spread illness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — nor are they found only amidst squalor.

How to avoid tick bites or treat them if they occur

As we head into the summer months, there are growing concerns about tick bites. Channel 11 reached out to a bug expert from Penn State to find out what people need to know to protect themselves this tick season.

Faculty Spotlight - Ben McGraw

This is the 4th of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

Penn State Master Gardener programs promote pollinator populations

When it comes to the importance of bees, Connie Schmotzer does not mince words. "Without bees, the world's food supply would be cut drastically, threatening the survival of many plants, animals and humans," said the Penn State Extension Master Gardener coordinator and horticulture educator. "Life, as we know it, would be much different — and not for the better."

Is Malaria's Peculiar Odor Key to Its Conquest?

he smell attracts mosquitoes, and may help identify hidden cases - One of the more disturbing things about parasites is an ability to manipulate their hosts, sometimes to suicidal extremes. The classic example is the liver fluke. It infects an ant as an intermediate carrier, then drives the insect to climb a blade of grass where it is likelier to get eaten by the parasite’s adult-stage host: a cow or other grazing ruminant.

Editorial: Let's turn tide in fight against spotted lanternfly

Researchers and regular folks each can play a role in eradicating the invasive insects.

Leach named spotted lanternfly extension associate at Penn State

In this newly created position, Leach is responsible for coordinating spotted lanternfly outreach and response efforts for the college, working in collaboration with state and federal agencies such as the state Department of Agriculture, Game Commission, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In addition, she will help ensure that Penn State Extension personnel are prepared to field inquiries and handle routine reporting duties.

SciArt: Interacting with Zombie Ants

The Huck Institute for the Life Sciences will present the first in a series of 'SciArt@TheHuck' exhibits when 'The Zombie Ant Experience' opens at the Millennium Science Complex May 21. Sculptor Talley Fisher is leading a team of artists, and scientists, as they finalize the interactive display.

Lanternflies Eat Everything in Sight. The U.S. Is Looking Delicious.

To most people, the buds and sprouts of April are welcome heralds of spring. But to some farmers and scientists in the southeastern corner of Pennsylvania, these signs mark the beginning of a long season of dread.

Ticks and mosquitoes bringing more diseases – what can we do?

Cases of vector-borne disease have more than doubled in the U.S. since 2004, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently reported, with mosquitoes and ticks bearing most of the blame.

PDA Joins USDA, Penn State to Combat Spotted Lanternfly

On the heels of the first Spotted Lanternfly hatch of the season, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, the United Stated Department of Agriculture, and Penn State University today warned of its potential $18 billion impact on the commonwealth’s businesses, trade and economy.

A caterpillar outwits corn defenses by gorging on fattening ‘junk’ food

The crop plants recruit zombie-maker wasps, but one pest has a desperate work-around

Answer for controlling stink bug population may rest with other pests

Penn State researchers think they might be able to solve, or at least control, the invasion of stink bugs — those shield-shaped invaders from the Far East that seemingly have become permanent residents in Southwestern Pennsylvania.

Mange in Bears in Pennsylvania Reaches Epidemic Rate

Over a lifetime, some Lancaster County residents may have seen a fox with mange. Hunters may have glimpsed an infected coyote. It's a horrible sight with clumps of hair missing from the beautiful animals.

Native Bees prove their worth

Story and photos by Jim Hale

Faculty Spotlight: Beth McGraw

This is the 5th of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

AlumnInsider Exclusive: Nina Jenkins Will Share the Ingenious Power of Penn State at City Lights

In an exclusive story for AlumnInsider, Nina Jenkins shares insight into her groundbreaking research.

Ticks and mosquitoes are bringing more diseases. How can you protect yourself?

Cases of vector-borne disease have more than doubled in the U.S. since 2004, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently reported, with mosquitoes and ticks bearing most of the blame.

Zombie ants’ final resting place sealed by the trees

A fungus that turns infected ants into powerless ‘zombies’ has adapted to climate conditions in different locales by modifying its victims’ behaviour.

Zombie fungus enslaves ants based on climate conditions

A fungus that turns ants into zombies has survived the global shift from tropical to temperate forests by subtly altering its victims’ behaviour.

$90,000 state grant to help study infestation of Chesco mushroom flies

On Thanksgiving 2015, Margo Woodacre had to send her family home on empty stomachs. A month later, Barbara and David Runkle were unable to put up their Christmas tree. In the years since, neighbors have worn out vacuum belts, spent untold amounts of money on black lights, and become amateur experts on homeopathic pesticides.

What Can Bees Teach Us About Building Better Urban Ecosystems?

Vacant land and urban agriculture are rejuvenating wild bee populations. Bees love cities. What can cities do to love them back?

Vineyard helping researchers understand damage lanternflies can do

Winery owner Darvin Levengood is no fan of the spotted lanternfly, an invasive insect that can wreak havoc on grapes.

Extreme form of mange spreading among Pennsylvania black bears

An army of microscopic critters is interrupting life for many of Pennsylvania’s black bears.

Faculty Spotlight: John Tooker

This is the 6th of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

State, federal agriculture officials will host live Q&A on invasive spotted lanternfly

What do you want to know about the invasive spotted lanternfly?

Spotted Lanternfly impacts eastern vineyards

The spotted lanternfly is starting to sour the grape and wine industries in southeastern Pennsylvania, and research underway in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences aims to spoil the invasive pest's party.

Scientists find evidence of 27 new viruses in bees

Study represents largest effort to date to identify novel pathogens in global bee populations. An international team of researchers has discovered evidence of 27 previously unknown viruses in bees. The finding could help scientists design strategies to prevent the spread of viral pathogens among these important pollinators.

'Nuru' becomes African farmers' newest ally against fall armyworm

Penn State and the UN's Food and Agriculture Organization launch new mobile app to fight fast-spreading pest

An invisible world: Explore the life of 'Zombie Ants' at the Arts Festival

When Daryl Branford — one of the minds behind the groundbreaking multimedia instillation “The Zombie Ant Experience” — first came to Penn State in the 90s, it was the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts that convinced him Penn State was the place for him.

Why it’s time to curb widespread use of neonicotinoid pesticides

Planting season for corn and soybeans across the U.S. corn belt is drawing to a close. As they plant, farmers are participating in what is likely to be one of the largest deployments of insecticides in United States history.

Faculty Spotlight: Matt Thomas & Beth McGraw

This is the 7th of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

Insect Invaders: Perils of Global Trade

As Japan rebuilt its economy in the decades following World War II, it shipped goods to U.S. consumers who loved the low prices. In more recent decades, China has taken Japan’s role as the low-cost shipper to the U.S. The way Hannah Burrack sees it, it just makes sense we have all these invasive pests from Asia.

Keep an eye out for the spotted lanternfly, an invasive insect found in PA

Some of you may have heard of the spotted lanternfly. Even if you have, I want to revisit this insect pest to enlist you in the effort to monitor its movement in our area.

Penn State faculty members use visual arts, multimedia, and technology to communicate research in new ways.

David Hughes, Penn State professor of entomology and biology, studies the effects of something that sounds like it’s straight out of a science fiction story: a fungus that infects living ants, takes control of their muscles against their will, and forces the ant to become a mindless zombie driven to help spread the fungus to take over even more ants. Now, “The Zombie Ant Experience,” an installation in the Millennium Science Complex at University Park, brings this research to life through art.

Buzzing Hard, Part 2

It’s not just about honey. Cities are full of bees, and in this double episode we hear about Brisbane bees and the Australian native alternative to European honey bees from Tim Heard of Sugarbag Bees, we talk with urban bee researcher Scott MacIvor from Toronto, and we go on an urban bee field trip on top of a chocolate factory with researcher Doug Sponsler and bee keeper Don Shump of the Philadelphia Bee Company.

Faculty Spotlight: Margarita López-Uribe and Heather Hines

This is the 8th of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

Buzzworthy: Dickinson College using grant to save bees

A field of flowers in Carlisle isn't being grown for its beauty. It's a pollinator garden and is now being used for bigger research.

Art of Discovery - Zombie Ants augmented reality

Zombies are real—and they'll be at Penn State's Art of Discovery Booth at the Arts Festival from 11 to 1 p.m on July 13. Learn how a parasitic fungus turns ants into its mindless zombie servants through multimedia sculpture and augmented reality!

Faculty Spotlight: David Hughes

This is the 9th of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

Calvin assumes new leadership role in combating spotted lanternfly threat

Dennis Calvin, director of Penn State Extension and associate dean in the College of Agricultural Sciences since 2009, has assumed a new role overseeing the college's efforts to combat the invasive spotted lanternfly. His appointment, which comes with the title of associate dean and director of special programs, was effective July 1.

Experts: Invasive tick likely in state

An exotic tick turning up in some neighboring states has yet to be documented in Pennsylvania, but two Penn State professors researching the invasive bloodsucker say it’s probably here, too.

Survey: Pollination Services of Blueberries in the Mid-Atlantic Region

If you grow blueberries on your farm, please consider participating in this short survey.

Pollinator Panic: Interdisciplinary team creates pollinator education video game

Communicating the intricate structure of pollinator communities can be a difficult task, but thanks to a collaboration between the School of Visual Arts and the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State, there is a new tool that could have success both inside and outside of the classroom.

Dr. Christina Grozinger elected as Fellow of the Entomological Society of America

The Governing Board of the Entomological Society of America (ESA) has elected 10 new Fellows of the Society for 2018. Election as a Fellow of ESA acknowledges outstanding contributions to entomology in research, teaching, extension and outreach, administration, or the military.

Helping pollinators highlighted at Ag Progress Days Yard and Garden Area

The benefits of creating pollinator-friendly landscapes is a focus of the Yard and Garden Area this year at Ag Progress Days, Aug. 14-16.

Faculty Spotlight: Cristina Rosa

This is the 10th of eleven short news articles written by students, during the professional development class. This year we had the students interview their advisor(s), in an effort to help them better understand the larger context of their projects.

What you need to know about the new invasive tick species found in Centre County

State health and agriculture officials are urging the public to be vigilant in checking humans and animals for ticks after a new invasive species was found in Centre County.

Spotted lanternfly headlines College Exhibits Building at Ag Progress Days

The looming threat posed by the invasive spotted lanternfly will take center stage in the College of Agricultural Sciences Exhibits Building and Theatre during Penn State's Ag Progress Days, Aug. 14-16.

2019 Graduate Student Recruitment Weekend

By invitation only - Travel expenses for eligible applicants will be paid by the Penn State Entomology Department. Apply by December 14th for priority consideration!

Native? Exotic? Do We Care? Squash Bees

Entomologist and urban bee specialist Doug Sponsler joins Billy and Tony early in the morning in a community garden spot in West Philadelphia to observe squash bees and talk about what counts as native. Squash are not strictly native to Philadelphia. They were introduced by Indians before European colonization. The bees followed the squash cultivation from its original distribution. Are they native? How much does it matter?

New technology improves CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing in mosquitoes, other species

A technology designed to improve CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing in mosquitoes and other arthropods succeeds with a high degree of efficiency, while eliminating the need for difficult microinjection of genetic material, according to researchers.

Genetically modified mosquitoes may be best weapon for curbing disease transmission

Mosquitoes are some of the most deadly creatures on the planet. They carry viruses, bacteria and parasites, which they transmit through bites, infecting some 700 million people and killing more than 1 million each year.

Beer, wine at risk from spotted lanternfly invasion

As the invasive insect also has a proclivity for fruit plants, particularly grapes, that means the main ingredients of both beer and wine are now in its sights.

The Entomological Society of America Names Winners of 2018 Professional and Student Awards

Please join us in congratulating Margarita Lope-Uribe who is the recipient of the Early Career Research Award. This award recognizes a student transition or early professional who has made outstanding research contributions to the field of entomology.

TREE Fund grant allows rights-of-way research to continue

Penn State Altoona has been awarded a grant for year one of a four-year research project from the Tree Research and Education Endowment (TREE) Fund. The grant will support research evaluating long-term effects of electrical right-of-way vegetation management on floral and faunal communities.

Penn State asks visitors to help 'stop the spread' of spotted lanternfly - Insect poses nearly $18 billion threat to Pennsylvania agriculture

The start of the academic year and football season brings thousands of students, families and fans to University Park, and Penn State wants to make sure those visitors are not chauffeuring a certain unwanted guest.

Brandywine professors raise awareness about Pennsylvania's newest pest

There’s a new insect causing a “buzz” in the northeastern United States — and two Brandywine faculty members have joined a University-wide effort to educate the public.

Tick-Borne Disease on the Rise in Centre County

Centre County residents have more than just Lyme disease to worry about when it comes to tick bites, as Mount Nittany Medical Center has reported an increase in cases of anaplasmosis in recent months.

What makes spotted lanternflies tick? Researchers hope to learn

Researchers and bureaucrats bent to examine the blackened leaves of poplar trees and inspected the ailing Virginia creeper racing up the walls of a Berks County home.

Lanternfly Researchers Seek Numbers on Damage

Strictly speaking, one spotted lanternfly in Pennsylvania is one lanternfly too many.

Healthy Soil Can Suppress Plant Pests, to a Point

Healthy soil + happy plants = healthy soil, unhappy pests. It’s a formula that seemingly works as a growing number of America’s farmers are using soil health management systems to improve the function of their growing medium.

Sterner, Grozinger recognized as outstanding postdoc and mentor

The Penn State Postdoctoral Society has announced postdoctoral researcher Glen Sterner III and Distinguished Professor of Entomology Christina Grozinger as the recipients of the 2018 Outstanding Postdoc Award and Outstanding Postdoc Mentor Award, respectively.

How Humans Are Messing Up Bee Sex

From pesticides to land development to electromagnetic pollution, humans often harm the ability of honeybees to reproduce.

Spotted lanternfly expert provides tips for home management of pest

With Labor Day come and gone, many people are starting to dread the thought of cold temperatures and snowy days to come.

Will Hurricane Florence smash the monarch butterfly migration in Pennsylvania?

Nearing the end of what anecdotally appears to have been a strong summer for the monarch butterfly population in Pennsylvania and elsewhere, the butterflies are coming up on time for their fall migration to mountains in central Mexico, just as Hurricane Florence is expected to smash into the region.

Program combines mobile devices and the outdoors in an unlikely pairing

In the age of digital technology, mobile devices are good for more than just text messaging and playing games. According to Penn State College of Education researchers, the combination of technology and the outdoors is getting children and their families outside to learn more about science and their communities.

Tracking the Health of Feral Bees in PA, 2018

Since 2016 the López-Uribe lab has been leading a citizen science project that aims to map and characterize the health status of feral bees across Pennsylvania

Pest Management Recommendations for Spotted Lanternfly

Penn State University Extension recently updated conventional spray recommendations for spotted lanternfly in both grape and tree fruit.

Great Insect Fair will put bugs on center stage at Penn State

Everything insect, from edible bug-based treats to bug-centered games and crafts to an insect zoo of strange creatures, will pack Snider Agricultural Arena at Penn State's University Park for the Department of Entomology's annual Great Insect Fair from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, September 22.

Andrew Read named director of the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences

Andrew Read has been appointed director of the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences at Penn State effective Jan. 1, 2019. Read is an Evan Pugh University Professor of Biology and Entomology, Eberly Professor of Biotechnology and director of the Center for Infectious Disease Dynamics.

Master Gardeners lend expertise, support to spotted lanternfly fight

With home gardening season now in the rear-view mirror, Penn State Extension Master Gardeners in Berks County thought calls to their garden hotline would wind down a bit, as in years past.

Report spotted lanternfly sightings

In the past week, there have been numerous sightings of spotted lanternfly in Ephrata Borough, Ephrata Township, Akron Borough, West Cocalico Township and Clay Township, according to Chief William Harvey, Ephrata borough emergency management coordinator and spotted lanternfly instructor for the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.

The Pest Management Professional Magazine has announced their 2018 Hall of Fame

The Pest Management Professional Magazine (PMP) staff is pleased to announce the five newest nominees for the PMP Hall of Fame.

America Isn’t Ready for the Lanternfly Invasion

A bizarre pest from Asia is spreading fast and putting billions of dollars’ worth of resources at risk.

Penn State Altoona students help protect monarch butterfly species

Every fall, hundreds of millions of monarch butterflies make their way from the United States and Canada to overwintering sites in Mexico. In recent years, this phenomenal migration is threatened by habitat loss in North America and at their overwintering grounds, so people across the continent have been setting up monarch way stations to help protect this species.

Grape growers feeling brunt of spotted lanternfly effects

Expert says adult spotted laternfly females are currently laying eggs for next year.

Duquesne, Penn State researchers genetically alter mosquitoes to fight malaria

Preventing malaria requires multiple approaches — vaccine development, new pesticides and bed-net technologies with a current focus on sterilizing male mosquitoes and manipulating the genomes of female mosquitoes to kill off the malarial parasites they carry.

Crawling Dead: How Ants Turn Into Zombies

Allow us to explain the gruesome process by which ordinary ants become the pawns of an insidious and spectacularly clever fungus.

Penn State Beekeepers Club fosters importance of honey bees

A club in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences is creating quite a buzz around campus.

From Agriculture to Art — the A.I. Wave Sweeps In

The internet is a technology of low-cost communication and connection. Everything from email to e-commerce to social networks has hinged on the internet’s transformative role in changing the economics of communication. All those connections suddenly became both possible and cheap.

Central Pa. Growers And Researchers Work To Stop The Spotted Lanternfly

Happy Valley Vineyard and Winery owner Barbara Christ stands among ten acres of grapevines on neat rows of trellises.

Eastern US States: Grape growers combating spotted lanternfly

While the dreaded spotted lanternfly has mostly been seen in the counties of eastern Pennsylvania, it is spreading quickly and is feeding on orchards and vineyards.

Senior class chooses Pollinator’s Garden Entry Gate as 2019 class gift

Penn State’s class of 2019 has chosen as its class gift legacy the Pollinators’ Garden Entry Gate at the Arboretum at Penn State.

Grad Student Reads: The Professor Is In

If you are a graduate student and you want to get a job in academia, then you need The Professor Is In: The Essential Guide to Turning Your Ph.D. into a Job. Also, if you’re a graduate student like me, and you might be interested in academia but you really have no idea what kind of a job you’re heading towards, then this is still a really useful book.

Get to know the spotted lanternfly

The Clinton County commissioners got a lesson on the spotted lanternfly on Monday. Tom Butzler, a horticulture extension educator for the Penn State University Cooperative Extension, talked about the invasive insect from Asia that may be found on imported Christmas trees brought to the state and gave a presentation on keeping the pest contained.

To fight dreaded mushroom flies, Penn State to hire new researcher

Entomologists at Pennsylvania State University are poised to hire a researcher to act as a liaison for Chester County residents besieged by aggressive mushroom flies.

Spiders get unfair rep as creepy creatures

It’s no wonder that many of us two-leggers get the heebie-jeebies at the sight of spiders. With their far-too-many legs, shiny or furry bodies — often painted with cryptic symbols — and mechanical, creeping movements, they seem alien next to soft, clumsy human bodies.

Penn State team gets $100,000 grant for satellite crop surveillance

A research team in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences has received a $100,000 Grand Challenges Explorations grant — an initiative funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Christmas tree growers battle fear of spotted lanternfly

Andrew and Donna Cole say they have yet to see spotted lanternfly on their New Jersey farm.

Glowing on the Golf Course: Fluorescent Imaging Reveals Turfgrass Pest’s Most Active Period

A new step forward in managing a pernicious pest of golf course putting greens comes with an assist from an unlikely source: marine biology.

'Eclectic Collections' exhibit features mix of Penn State museum offerings

Penn State’s University Museum Consortium is hosting a public reception to celebrate "Eclectic Collections," a collaborative exhibit between University museums and galleries.

How we can contain the spotted lanternfly — maybe the worst invasive pest in generations | Opinion

You may have heard about them. They invade our natural habitats and managed landscapes, our farms and forests, our yards and gardens — and sometimes our homes. They raise our anxiety as they cause ecological and economic damage, threaten our health, and force costly responses from government agencies, industry sectors, and research institutions.

Dicamba drift affects non-target plants and pollinators

Dicamba herbicide drift onto plants growing adjacent to farm fields causes significant delays in flowering, as well as reduced flowering, of those plants, and results in decreased visitation by honey bees, according to researchers at Penn State and the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture.

Invasive bug goes viral for hitching ride on Christmas trees

It's colorful to look at unless it's hatching in your house! The spotted lantern fly has become a big problem for crops in some mid-Atlantic states, and now is making headlines for clinging to Christmas trees in those infested areas.

Asian tick that clones itself could spread fast and far in the US, study says

The Asian longhorned tick most likely began invading the United States years ago. Now found in nine states, the tick may soon occupy a large swath of eastern North America as well as coastal regions of the Pacific Northwest, according to research published Thursday in the Journal of Medical Entomology.

Extension Unplugged: Communicating Entomology to Amish and Mennonite Communities in Pennsylvania

Today, extension agents are more plugged in and wired than ever, producing YouTube videos, writing blogs, and even tweeting to reach their communities. Pennsylvanian extension agents are riding this new technological wave while at the same time keeping a foot in the past to best serve one of their largest constituent communities: Amish and Mennonite communities, also known as Plain Communities

Alumnus Honored at Florida Mosquito Control Association Annual Meeting

The Florida Keys Mosquito Control District (FKMCD) is proud to announce that Chris Law, Bruce Stevens and Dr. Larry Hribar were honored at the 90th Annual Meeting of the Florida Mosquito Control Association in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Registration is open for the 2019 Authentic Plant Pollinator Landscape Research for Educators Workshop!

A unique teacher professional development experience for middle and high school teachers. June 24th - 28th, 2019

Agriculture Awards Grants For Spotted Lanternfly, Farm Conservation Research

On December 21, the Department of Agriculture award $1.286 million in grants to 15 Pennsylvania universities and research organizations to advance Pennsylvania’s agriculture and food industry.

The sting left by a fallen bee colony is felt by researchers, volunteers

For university scientists and student volunteers, the reality of bee deaths during winter is harsh. Just last year, the Beekeepers Club lost all of its bees to the cold weather, thus slowing its productions and making this year one of rebuilding.

Colony Size Drives Honey Bees’ Overwinter Survival

When the temperature drops and the days get shorter, honey bees don’t hibernate—they huddle. Meanwhile, worker bees produced in the fall are plump and have longer lifespans than their spring counterparts. These winterized workers form a “thermoregulatory cluster” around their queen. Powered by honey stores, they shiver their muscles to produce heat, keeping temperatures at the center of the cluster around a comfortable 21 degrees Celsius (C). Still, winter is a stressful time for honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies. In the United States around 30 percent of colonies don’t survive until spring.

A Beginner’s Guide to the Peer Review System

I was thrilled to receive my first request to peer review a paper while working on my Ph.D. Then I realized I didn’t know how to peer review. It had never been covered in my classes, so I started asking around and sending emails, reaching out to my friends in other programs, but with little luck. As important as peer review is, it seems that few STEM programs actively teach students about how to navigate the peer review process and make the decisions involved, such as whether to accept or reject a paper for publication.

Crafting social ties

On Thursday nights, the yarn comes out. Every week, my fellow entomology graduate students and I get together to make insect-inspired crafts. One crochets butterflies, another makes earrings out of wings from discarded research specimens, and a third decoupages notebooks with figures and illustrations from journal articles thrown out after a lab cleanup. It may sound light or frivolous, but it's far from it. A regular social night like this—whether built around crafts or some other shared interest—can make a significant difference in our work and our lives.

Open Position - Assistant Professor of Entomology: Arthropod Ecology

9-month, Tenure Track, 60% Research, 30% Extension, 10% Teaching

Open Position - Assistant Professor of Arthropod Vector Biology and/or Ecology

9- month, Tenure Track, 75% Research, 25% Teaching

Bed bug task force aims to secure bed bug ordinance for City of Philadelphia

Philadelphians Against Bed Bugs (PhABB) – a partnership among Penn State Integrated Pest Management Program, local agencies, non-profits, health care professionals, senior and low-income housing advocates, lawyers, and everyday citizens -- is one step closer to securing a bed bug ordinance for the city of Philadelphia and awaits the vote of the City Council.

Firefly-inspired surfaces improve efficiency of LED lightbulbs

A new type of light-emitting diode lightbulb could one day light homes and reduce power bills, according to Penn State researchers who suggest that LEDs made with firefly-mimicking structures could improve efficiency.

Spotted Lanternfly: A pretty destructive pest

“Invasive pretty” may be one way to describe the Spotted Lanternfly, although Penn State entomologist Heather Leach warns that the beautiful bug is also a destructive pest.

New Penn State gardens, oak woes, and changes in growing conditions: The latest in gardening news

Let's catch up this week on some gardening news and interesting tidbits ... Bird and pollinator gardens coming to Penn State

Student Research Spotlight - Staci Cibotti

This is the 1st of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Checking out Pollinators in Pennsylvania By Carolyn Trietsch

With insect species declining and agriculturally-important pollinators at risk, it’s important to know what species are present in an area to help protect them. PhD student Shelby Kilpatrick is trying to find out what bees are present in Pennsylvania, and is creating a list that could help with future conservation efforts.

Penn State Berks center supports spotted lantern fly research

The Center for the Agricultural Sciences and a Sustainable Environment (CASSE) at Penn State Berks is the “killing fields” for spotted lantern flies. At least that’s the goal of researchers from Penn State University’s College of Agriculture Sciences, who have been working with researchers from Penn State Berks and Penn State Cooperative Extension to study the biology and also the effectiveness of various insecticides on the pests that have invaded and wreaked havoc on Berks County since 2014.

Student Research Spotlight - Nina Dennington

This is the 2nd of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

WTAJ Originals: PSU research team discovers how beetle stores toxins without being harmed

Everybody has a self-defense system. Some use brute force...others like Ground Beetles prefer to use their own nasty combination of chemicals to ward off predators.

Nematode odors offer possible advantage in the battle against insect pests

Gardeners commonly use nematodes to naturally get rid of harmful soil-dwelling insects. A new study published today in the journal Functional Ecology revealed that these insect-killing nematodes also produce distinctive chemical cues, which deter Colorado potato beetles and make potato leaves less palatable to them.

Pennsylvania will have 150 researchers trying to eradicate the spotted lanternfly in 2019

Penn State University and the state and federal departments of agriculture are committing resources to combat the invasive insect

Winter chill won’t affect mosquitoes, ticks

Did this winter’s cold weather lessen the numbers of disease-carrying mosquitoes and ticks?

What Makes Them Tick

Researchers in the college investigate tick behavior and molecular biology with a goal of preventing tickborne illnesses.

Bug off! Penn State takes proactive approach in dealing with pesky pests

Warm weather at Penn State’s University Park campus sprouts scenes of flowers in bloom, students playing frisbee on the Old Main lawn and folks strolling around campus as they enjoy Berkey Creamery ice cream.

Study tracks the rise of mange in black bears

Research projects have increased in recent years to determine how many black bears are affected and what the best remedy is. The state handles between 50 and 60 cases of severe mange each year, Ternent said.

Spotted lanternfly quarantine zone expanded to Dauphin County

Pennsylvania’s spotted lanternfly quarantine zone has been expanded to include Dauphin County, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture announced today.

Pea-planting, lanternfly scraping, and lawn preparations: This Weekend in the Garden

Sunday’s arrival of St. Patrick’s Day is the milepost that many long-time vegetable gardeners use to determine the season’s first planting – peas.

Raising a stink for BMSB research

Almost a decade after the first brown marmorated stink bug outbreak cost Mid-Atlantic apple growers millions, the pest is no longer inducing panic, thanks to advancements in targeted management for orchardists.

Student Research Spotlight - Nathan Derstine

This is the 3rd of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Pennsylvania growers struggle with spotted lanternfly

The Mid-Atlantic and Midwest are better known for apple production than wine, but it is winegrape growers who perhaps have the most to lose from the latest pest threatening that region.

When and where in Pennsylvania will 17-year cicadas emerge this year?

Hordes of 17-year cicadas will be making an appearance in Pennsylvania in May and June, but only in the southwestern corner of the state.

Online tool identifies best and safest places to keep bees

Honeybees play essential roles in pollinating plants that humans and animals rely on for food. Declines in bee populations - including 20 percent of honeybee colonies per year in Indiana - threaten our food supply. Insecticide exposure, loss of flowering plants, and fewer nesting habitats, disease and parasites are all factors.

Voracious hordes of destructive insects on the horizon: Here's what it means to NY

Spotted lanternflies, the feared invasive insect that could wreak havoc in the Finger Lakes, have been found in at least eight New York counties since last summer, including Monroe, Chemung, Yates and Westchester.

New online tool and community to support bees

A new online tool and community, called Beescape, enables beekeepers, or anyone interested in bees, to understand the specific stressors to which the bees in their managed hives, home gardens or farms are exposed, according to researchers at Penn State.

The Latest Information on a Hitchhiking Pest

The Spotted Lanternfly represents a new pest challenge to those in the horticulture industry due to its wide host range and potential for damage. In our previous coverage, we had preliminary information about this pest, as it had just been detected and not much was known about it. But the first, and arguably most important, update is that the geographic range has increased.

Package Bee Installation

Spring is a busy time of the year for beekeepers as it marks the arrival of bee packages. Package bees have become a staple for beekeepers in North America as more people take up beekeeping as a hobby and overwinter colony losses have increased.

Student Research Spotlight - Julie Golinski

This is the 4th of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Ottar Bjørnstad Elected as an Ecological Society of America 2019 Fellow

The Ecological Society of America (ESA) is pleased to announce its 2019 Fellows. The Society’s fellowship program recognizes the many ways in which its members contribute to ecological research and discovery, communication, education and pedagogy, and management and policy.

New pollinator plant selection tool

Trying to decide which plants to include in your garden? The USDA-SCRI funded, "Protecting Bees" project has developed a pollinator plant selection tool that lets you search for flowering plant species according to zip code, bloom time, sun exposure, soil moisture levels, and relative attractiveness to different types of pollinators - including flies, which are the second most important group of pollinating insects, after bees!

Beescape is ‘just the beginning’ for beekeepers and researchers alike

Researchers at Penn State and around the country have come together to create a website that will offer an inside look into the lives of nature’s pollinators.

Protecting Pollinators

Penn State’s Christina Grozinger and the Center for Pollinator Research are implementing creative approaches to protecting bee populations in Pennsylvania and beyond.

CPR researchers awarded grants from the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign

North American Pollinator Protection Campaign (NAPPC) Task Force for Honey Bee Health Selects 2019 Research Projects

Graduate student awardees celebrated at annual luncheon

Penn State President Eric Barron presented 11 awards to more than 30 graduate students in recognition of outstanding achievement during the annual Graduate Student Awards Luncheon held April 11 at the Nittany Lion Inn.

Graduate student Bipana Paudel Timilsena receives International Research Award

Bipana Paudel Timilsena, a doctoral student in entomology with a dual title in international agriculture and development, received the Graduate Student International Research Award. The purpose of the award is to promote and support international research and scholarship by graduate students that has the potential for global impact.

Thirteen graduate students receive the Alumni Association Dissertation Award

Thirteen graduate students received the Penn State Alumni Association Dissertation Award, Distinguished Doctoral Scholar Medal in recognition of their outstanding professional accomplishment and achievement in scholarly research in any of the disciplinary areas of arts and humanities; social sciences—applied and basic; physical and computational sciences—applied and basic; life and health sciences; and engineering.

The Arboretum at Penn State launches new interactive Plant Finder map

Visitors to The Arboretum at Penn State now can explore the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens with the Arboretum's new, interactive Plant Finder.

Invasive lanternfly wreaking havoc in the Northeast poses big threat to Michigan plants, crops

Invasive species can cause major damage to an ecosystem. They compete with native flora and fauna for resources, and often lack any natural predators to control their populations.

Feel the buzz: Penn State to bring pollinator garden that will last ‘forever' to the Arboretum

After years of planning and research by Penn State’s Center for Pollinator Research, a large pollinator garden is set to break ground at the Arboretum in the fall 2019.

Student Research Spotlight - Hannah Greenberg

This is the 5th of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

How a parasitic fungus turns ants into 'zombies'

They walk among us: insects hijacked by parasitic fungi that control their every move.

How the bumble bee got its stripes

Researchers have discovered a gene that drives color differences within a species of bumble bees. This discovery helps to explain the highly diverse color patterns among bumble bee species as well as how mimicry--individuals in an area adopting similar color patterns--evolves. A study describing the gene, which occurs in a highly conserved region of the genome that provides blueprints for segmentation, was led by researchers at Penn State and appears April 29, 2019, in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

What if a solution to malaria came from Pennsylvania?

Penn State's Matt Thomas and a team of collaborators are investigating a new method for preventing malaria transmission that involves limiting mosquito access to houses by blocking openings and installing “eave tubes” that contain a unique insecticide-laced mosquito netting that kills the insects as they attempt to enter. “Eighty percent of transmissions happen at night when people are in their homes, so if you could stop mosquitoes from getting into the house then you will have taken personal protection to the level of the household,” said Thomas, professor and Huck Scholar in Ecological Entomology.

5 Questions: Helping manage the Beescape in Carlisle

Each winter Pennsylvania beekeepers lose nearly 50% of their honey bee colonies and several wild bee species are threatened or endangered, reflecting trends around the world.

Researchers find 2 fungi killed spotted lanternflies in Berks

The discovery could lead to a biological weapon to control the Asian pests.

Spotted lanternfly egg hatching confirmed in Berks

The first known hatching of the pest's eggs this spring were discovered on Wednesday from eggs laid on the side of a building in Shillington, according to the PA Department of Agriculture.

Student Research Spotlight - Jonathan Hernandez

This is the 6th of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Penn State Extension marks milestone in outreach to Spanish-speaking growers

For close to a decade, Jorge Manzo has worked at McCleaf’s Orchard, a fifth-generation family farm near Gettysburg in Adams County, where he is responsible for preparing a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables for market, including a few of his favorites — kiwi, blackberries and raspberries.

Penn State Extension: What’s the Buzz?

Inside this issue: Pollinator Garden of Merit, Outstanding Pollinator Plants, Protecting Pollinators, News from the Center for Pollinator Research and Beescape: An online tool

Spotted Lanternflies Ride Wind to Find Food

The spotted lanternfly is not a strong or frequent flyer, weaknesses that may hinder its ability to travel long distances by air, according to researchers in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences.

Orchardists Face Spring Spray Decisions

With insects and diseases to suppress and blossoms to thin, fruit growers will be spending a lot of time with their sprayers in the coming weeks.

Cicada emergence draws near in part of Pennsylvania

Temperatures in southwestern Pennsylvania will climb into the high 60s and low 70s this week, signaling that it won’t be long before the region is buzzing under the emergence of hordes of 17-year cicadas.

Researchers Track Shift in Pennsylvania's Tick Population

The prevalence of the most abundant species of ticks found in Pennsylvania has shifted over the last century, according to Penn State scientists, who analyzed 117 years' worth of specimens and data submitted primarily by residents from around the state.

Hope grows in lanternfly-killing fungi found near Berks fruit farm

A batch of dead lanternfiles on trees of heaven near the Angora Fruit Farm in Lower Alsace excites researchers.

Yes, there are a lot more Lyme disease-carrying ticks in Pa. today: Penn State study

The tick responsible for most cases of Lyme diseases has boomed from nearly non-existence in Pennsylvania in the 1960s to the most commonly found tick across the state today, according to Penn State researchers.

New tick making its way into our area

Jennifer Frederick won't forget the time she found her son at home and realized something was wrong.

Invasion of the stink bugs: how a tiny insect roils global communities

A stinky bug eating its way through the economy of an agricultural region in Eastern Europe stands as a stark example of how climate change creates opportunities for pests and havoc for farmers.

Researchers discover natural predator that can kill spotted lanternflies

Penn State researchers who are trying to stop the spread of the invasive spotted lanternfly have recently discovered a natural predator that could be an effective and massive tool to kill the bug.

Fungus among us found to kill spotted lanternfly invaders

Heather Leach was driving to a Berks County park in August to follow up on a tip about something killing spotted lanternflies when she saw a bunch of grape vines and trees of heaven ― a favorite target of the invasive bugs.

Zombie fungus proves deadly to spotted lanternfly

The invasive spotted lanternfly has swept through southeast Pennsylvania over the past five years, chomping down on fruits and hops along the way. But scientists are studying whether it may have met its match in the form of a mind-altering fungus.

Tick season in full swing, ways to prevent being bitten by a tick

With summer quickly approaching, that means tick season is upon us. Experts say more ticks are starting to come out, which increases your chance of getting Lyme Disease.

Tree of heaven, a spotted lanternfly favorite, is named Pennsylvania's newest noxious weed

The Asian tree, Ailanthus altissima, has earned its new designation in part because of its meal appeal to the sap-sucking pest that recently started to hatch in Berks.

Growers prepare for spotted lanternfly onslaught

Wine grape growers in eastern Pennsylvania saw major losses from the pest last year.

Lyme Disease-Carrying Ticks Have Returned

The tick responsible for most Lyme diseases cases has boomed from near non-existence in the 1960s to become the most commonly found tick across the state of Pennsylvania, according to new research.

There are a lot more Lyme disease-carrying ticks in Pa. today, Penn State study finds

The tick responsible for most cases of Lyme diseases has boomed from near non-existence in Pennsylvania in the 1960s to the most commonly found tick across the state today, according to Penn State researchers.

Pa. Farm Bill touted as aid to fight spotted lanternfly

As the spotted lanternfly begins to hatch for a new season, state and federal agriculture officials are expanding their efforts to contain the destructive insect.

What if bees disappeared?

In the United States, honey bees and wild bees contribute $20 billion each to agriculture and industries that depend on agriculture, meaning that fewer bees could lead to smaller harvests and increased food prices.

Student Research Spotlight - Rachel McLaughlin

This is the 7th of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

New crop-destroying pest enters China amid devastating swine fever epidemic

A new pest that threatens key agricultural commodities is spreading through China as the nation is reeling from an African swine fever epidemic that may wipe out hundreds of millions of hogs.

Penn Staters working to reverse bee declines

Within the past decade, beekeepers across the globe have observed massive declines in managed honey bee populations. Similar declines have been observed in populations of wild bees and other pollinators. Understanding what is driving these declines is a vital question for researchers, beekeepers, growers, and the public. Several factors are being investigated, including habitat loss, climate change, disease and pesticide use.

PA Ag Secretary: We must 'contain and suppress' spotted lanternfly

As far as Russell Redding is concerned, the fight against the invasive spotted lanternfly will be won the same way the state beat the plum pox virus — "contain and suppress."

Pa. Lyme disease cases appear to hit plateau, but that shouldn’t change your outdoors routine

There’s good news about Lyme disease, Pennsylvanians. After a couple of years of leading the nation in “confirmed and probable” cases of the tick-borne disease, the experts expect the number of cases to level off.

New Law Would Help Bees—but Could Leave Other Pollinators out in the Cold

Amid the continuing decline of pollinators worldwide, U.S. lawmakers recently revived a perennially struggling bill that aims to save these helpful species. However, pollinator loss is more complicated than many headlines suggest. And curbing it, some scientists say, requires more than just stricter pesticide regulation—a major focus of the bill.

PA Department of Agriculture Requires Spotted Lanternfly Permit For Some Businesses

Fearing the spread of the spotted lanternfly, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is requiring a permit for businesses transporting goods through a quarantine zone.

New records show spread of parasitic deer flies across the US

With flattened bodies, grabbing forelegs and deciduous wings, deer keds do not look like your typical fly. These parasites of deer — which occasionally bite humans — are more widely distributed across the U.S. than previously thought, according to Penn State entomologists, who caution that deer keds may transmit disease-causing bacteria.

Student Research Spotlight - Alex Pagac

This is the 8th of eight short news articles written by students, during the professional development class, about each other's research.

Methods to Control Varroa Mites: An Integrated Pest Management Approach

Varroa mites (Varroa destructor), are the most influential of all of the pests and diseases of the European honey bee (Apis mellifera) today.

We must wage an all-out war against the spotted lanternfly in PA

For many Pennsylvanians, dedicating $2.5 million to the battle against an insect that significantly affects only 20% of our counties is a questionable investment. One reason might be their unfamiliarity with the spotted lanternfly, which so far has either failed to or just not gotten around to crossing the Susquehanna River in large numbers. To date, 14 counties have been placed under quarantine due to the insect’s presence reaching the level of infestation. The list of counties stretches from Monroe in the north to Dauphin and Lancaster here in the south.

Virginia Fruit Growers Remain Vigilant About Invasive Pest

“None of the organic compounds work against spotted lanternfly,” said Heather Leach, spotted lanternfly Extension associate with Penn State.

Scout Now to Stay Ahead of Cereal Leaf Beetle Infestations

Native to Europe and Asia, the cereal leaf beetle has made inroads throughout much of eastern North America, the midwest, and even Canada. The adult females have a long egg-laying period of 45-60 days, so the larvae can be present and damage crops for a significant period of time.

Sticky tape meant to snare lanternflies also catching birds and squirrels

Woodpeckers, squirrels and other animals are getting stuck on the sticky tape used to trap spotted lanternflies, prompting an outcry from animal rehabilitation centers and other nature groups.

Truckers who don't comply with spotted lanternfly quarantine could face hefty fines

Truckers who don’t comply with a quarantine effort to restrict the spread of an invasive insect in Pennsylvania and nearby states can face fines of up to $20,000.

Humans can't manage this invasive fly—but a mind-controlling fungi might

If Youtube footage is to be believed, people have taken up arms against infestations of invasive spotted lanternflies by blasting the bugs with everything from pressure washers to rock salt, dish soap and even propane torches.

Cicadas are buzzing the 'burbs after 17 years underground

It’s easy to find evidence that the 17-year cicadas’ mating season has begun in Western Pennsylvania. Exoskeletons hang on tree branches, stray wings left by predators lie in the grass and, when it’s hot enough, unlucky males still searching for mates sing their ringing, high-pitched song.

Industry groups award funding for fruit research and extension projects

New and ongoing tree-fruit research in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences received a boost with the recent awarding of funds totaling more than $261,000 by the State Horticultural Association of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Apple Program.

Can tiny wasps control sap-sucking flies targetting US vines?

Researchers from the University of California, Riverside, are testing to see if a species of wasp the size of a sesame seed could stave off a potentially devastating invasion of sap-sucking insects that could seriously affect California’s grape crops.

Online Hands-On Mapping System Helps Keep Pollinators Safe

Researchers have been working for well over a decade to enhance the health of pollinators and now beekeepers, citizen scientists, and anyone interested in pollinator health can join in using a new online tool, Beescape.

Spotted lanternfly expert at Penn State offers advice on using tree bands

It is quickly becoming a summertime ritual, albeit not a fun one, for homeowners living in southeastern Pennsylvania: trying to get rid of the swarms of spotted lanternflies that have taken up residence on their properties.

2019 Dutch Gold Undergraduate Scholarship supports research and education in bee health

To help catalyze research and education in bee health, Dutch Gold Honey, based in Lancaster County, PA, endowed an Undergraduate Scholarship in Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences in 2010. This yearly award pairs students in the College of Agricultural Sciences with faculty mentors from the Penn State Center for Pollinator Research. The 2019 Dutch Gold Scholarship has been awarded to two students, Jacklyn Kiner and Matthew Poorman, whose projects seek to improve methods for bee management and public learning about bees.

Notes from the Lab: The Latest Bee Science Distilled

A roadmap for how to minimize pesticide risk to bees by Scott McArt

Climate warming could increase malaria risk in cooler regions

Malaria parasites develop faster in mosquitoes at lower temperatures than previously thought, according to researchers at Penn State and the University of Exeter. The findings suggest that even slight climate warming could increase malaria risk to hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people — including travelers — in areas that are currently too cold for malaria parasites to complete their development.

After a wet spring, Pa. DEP monitors for West Nile virus. Will this summer be bad?

Last year was one of the worst on record for West Nile virus in Pennsylvania. The number of cases jumped to 130, from 20 in 2017, and eight people died.

Patterns of Pesticide Use, Exposure, and Toxicity Jointly Determine Impacts on Honeybees and Other Pollinators

Pollinators such as honeybees, wild bees, and pollen wasps contribute to one-third of the world’s food-crop production. However, the health and abundance of pollinators has declined in recent decades due to a range of factors that include pests, pathogens, pesticides, and poor nutrition. Farmers use pesticides to treat pests that would otherwise damage our food. Patterns, or “domains,” of pesticide use and pesticide effects on pollinators are linked in a complex system through a third domain, pollinator pesticide exposure. This framework can provide insights into options for reducing risks to pollinators while also improving pest management strategies for crops, as illustrated through the example of apple production.

PlantVillage gives undergraduate a chance to help feed the world via technology

Coming from the small town of Limeport, near Allentown, a young Annalyse Kehs may not have thought much about international agriculture or feeding the world. But thanks to a project called PlantVillage, the Penn State rising senior not only is helping to address world hunger but is relishing the opportunity to travel to destinations such as Kenya and Rome to interact with farmers, researchers and policymakers.

#Beetech: Azavea and Penn State made a tool to see ‘bee’s eye view’ of hive environments

Pennsylvania’s beekeepers can now get even closer to their six-legged friends. In April, Penn State University, with the help of Callowhill-based geospatial technology company Azavea, released a new tool called Beescape where keepers can get the buzz on their hives (sorry) with a “bee’s eye view” of their environment.

State Officials Warn Residents to be Aware of Spotted Lanternfly

Pennsylvania is facing a bug problem. It’s the first state to be inhabited by the Spotted Lanternfly, and the little bug is causing a big issue. It may seem harmless, but the the insect is causing damage to Pennsylvania’s trees and crops, which is negatively affecting the agriculture industry, and quality of life for residents

State officials ask for public’s help combating spotted lanternfly

Pennsylvania state officials are asking for the public’s help in controlling the spotted lanternfly — an invasive insect that is both a nuisance and a threat to crops.

Governor Wolf Joins Front Lines in Battle Against Spotted Lanternfly

Governor Tom Wolf and Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding were in Harrisburg to view the treatment being conducted across the Commonwealth concerning Spotted Lanternflies. They were joined by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA), Penn State University, and USDA at a Harrisburg site populated with Spotted Lanternflies.

Food for thought: Using an evidence-based approach to manage honey bees in light of wild bee declines

Honey bees are critical for crop pollination in the United States. The US is the first global producer of almonds and blueberries, and both of these crops require large numbers of managed honey bee colonies to maximize yields.

Student travels to Washington to share passion for international agriculture

Sulav Paudel, a doctoral candidate in entomology and in international agriculture and development in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, traveled to Washington, D.C., in June to participate in two conferences aimed at advancing international agriculture and rural development.

Cross-pollination between educators and researchers at the 2019 APPL-RED workshop

The 2019 Authentic Plant Pollinator Landscape Research for Educators (APPL-RED) Workshop at Penn State attracted thirteen K-12 educators from across Pennsylvania and beyond (one educator is currently teaching in the Spangdahlem region in Germany). The workshop allowed educators to work closely with members of Penn State’s Center for Science and the Schools and Center for Pollinator Research.

There’s been a ‘dramatic increase’ of this tick-borne illness in Centre County

Centre County has seen a “dramatic increase” in hospitalizations over the past two years for an infectious bacterial disease primarily spread by deer ticks, according to a Mount Nittany Physician Group infectious disease specialist.

Arboretum at Penn State to celebrate 10th anniversary with Gala in the Gardens

Dinner and dancing will highlight a Gala in the Gardens event from 5:30 to 10 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 20, to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the opening of The Arboretum at Penn State’s H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens.

Investigating the Zombie Ant's "Death Grip"

Researchers dissected the jaws of ants infected with the Ophiocordyceps fungus to determine how the fungus hijacks the ants' behavior. Christopher Intagliata reports.

Yard and Garden Area at Ag Progress Days expands offerings

Creating pollinator-friendly landscapes again will be the focus of the Yard and Garden Area at Ag Progress Days, Aug. 13-15, but many other activities will be going on there, as well.

Over 100 educators attend the 2019 Penn State Pollinator In-service Meeting

Penn State Extension and the Center for Pollinator Research hosted a two-day in-service meeting in July 2019 to train Extension Educators and Master Gardeners on the latest information about pollinator diversity, health, and management.

Our view: Pa. must contain spotted lanternfly

Experts and Gov. Tom Wolf toured an area near Harrisburg on Tuesday to inspect the harm wreaked by the colorful, menacing spotted lanternfly. As they did, at least one researcher was already looking hundreds of miles past that damage to the potentially dire implications for Erie County.

Parasitic deer flies are more widespread than we thought

Deer keds – flat-bodied flies with grabbing forelegs and deciduous wings that are parasites on deer – are more widely distributed across the U.S., and Pennsylvania, than previously known.

5 years into the spotted lanternfly invasion

The insect fluttered around her garden, a strange, pretty bug with mottled red, tan and gray wings, and Piper Sherburne admired its beauty.

This invasive bug is terrorizing Pennsylvania growers (and it’s coming for your wine)

In Amityville, Pennsylvania, 10 acres of grapevines sprawl across the family-owned Manatawny Creek Winery. Owner Darvin Levengood is no stranger to vineyard pests. But he was met with calamity in the fall of 2017 when grape pickers were bombarded by swarms of a new invasive insect, the Spotted Lanternfly. Winery guests couldn’t drink on the open porch without finding the bug, and its “honeydew,” in their glass.

Spotted lanternfly could become a problem here

Spotted lantern flies are not a problem in Tioga County, and the state Department of Agriculture would like to make sure they don’t become one.

Government leaders to take the pulse of industry, public at Ag Progress Days

Elected officials and leaders of government agencies will use the opportunity afforded by Penn State's Ag Progress Days, set for Aug.13-15, to inform — and get feedback from — the public and industry stakeholders about agricultural programs and policy priorities at the state and federal levels.

Spotted lanternfly a real pest

Pennsylvania agriculture communities need residents to help stamp out an invasive species responsible for decimating fruit crops in eastern and central counties, a Penn State University spokesman said.

Survey aims to help citizens protect themselves from vector-borne illnesses

Penn State Extension has established a new vector-borne disease team that focuses on diseases transmitted by ticks and mosquitos. To ensure that its efforts address community needs, the team is launching a survey, the results of which will allow extension educators to deliver responsive programming to educate the public on vector-borne diseases, how to prevent them, and how people can protect themselves.

How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs for Good, According to Experts Who Study Them

Follow these steps to banish bed bugs from your home and prevent an infestation in the first place.

Ten Entomologists Honored as Fellows of the Entomological Society of America

The Governing Board of the Entomological Society of America (ESA) has elected 10 new Fellows of the Society for 2019. Election as a Fellow of ESA acknowledges outstanding contributions to entomology in research, teaching, extension and outreach, administration, or the military.

Research predicts stability of mosquito-borne disease prevention

More than half of the people in the world, including in the United States, live alongside Aedes aegypti — the mosquito that transmits dengue, Zika and other often deadly viruses. Dengue virus, alone, infects nearly 400 million people worldwide each year. To reduce transmission of dengue to humans, scientists have introduced Wolbachia bacteria to A. aegypti mosquitoes. Now a team of international researchers has found that Wolbachia’s ability to block virus transmission may be maintained by natural selection, alleviating concern that this benefit could diminish over time.

Penn State employees traveling in lanternfly quarantine zone must take training

Stopping the spread of the spotted lanternfly, one of the most destructive pests to hit the U.S. in years, is a priority for Pennsylvania.

ESA Names Winners of 2019 Professional and Student Awards

The Entomological Society of America congratulates the winners of its 2019 awards. The awards recognize scientists, educators, and students who have distinguished themselves through their contributions to entomology.

Penn State scientists may have discovered way to control invasive spotted lanternfly

A pest that sparked quarantines across the region and struck terror into the hearts of fruit farmers, timber exporters, and homeowners may have met its match.

Green and spiky creature found at Pennsylvania state park isn’t an alien. It’s a hickory horned devil

Marten Edwards knows just what to say when friends come to him and admit that they think they’ve seen an alien.

What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like? Here’s Exactly How to Spot the Symptoms

Waking up with a fresh set of itchy bug bites can bring on its own set of worries. What, exactly, was biting you in the middle of the night? Was it a spider? Mosquito? Or—possibly the worst case scenario — could it have been bed bugs?

Philadelphia has a mysterious critter found nowhere else. Meet the volunteers tracking it.

Her other options exhausted, Sonia Jung reached for the self-closing forceps. Neither the reed of grass, the cotton swab, nor the nylon foam had been enough to lure one of Philadelphia’s most secretive animals.

Graphene film promising for blocking mosquitoes

Health officials are touting a new protection against bloodsucking insects amid reports of a rare mosquito-borne disease that has infected four people in Massachusetts, killing one woman.

Half a billion dead honey bees in Brazil show what happens when you roll back pesticide regulations

Insecticides kill insects. It should be no surprise, then, that in Brazil, which has seen a 27% increase in pesticide sales since last year, roughly 500 million honey bees were found dead in piles across four states in early spring. The country’s pesticide use has grown by 770% between 1990 to 2016, as reported by Bloomberg.

Penn State asks visitors to help 'stop the spread' of spotted lanternfly

This is the time of year when thousands of students, families and football fans are coming to University Park, and Penn State officials want to make sure those visitors are not transporting the spotted lanternfly, an invasive insect that is threatening the northeastern U.S., especially southeastern Pennsylvania.

Everyone Plays a Role in the Fight Against Spotted Lanternfly

We write in reply to a letter in the Aug. 24 issue of Lancaster Farming from Travis Martin, who asked about our collaborative efforts to contain and manage spotted lanternfly infestations.

There's fungus among us, and it might kill off the spotted lanternfly in Pa.

As Pennsylvania continues to lose ground in the war against the spotted lanternfly, a new hope is on the horizon.

As spotted lanternfly control ramps up, Penn State, researchers find possible biopesticide

Penn State is requiring all employees who travel in and out of any of the 14 counties included in the invasive spotted lanternfly “quarantine zone” for work to receive training and carry spotted lanternfly kits.

What are those nests in the trees along Interstate 83?

As you've been driving around York County, especially along Interstate 83, you might have noticed thick webs in some of the trees.

Are We Safe From the Real World Parasite that Inspired ‘The Last Of Us’?

When it comes to horror, there’s nothing more terrifying than the plausible. As much as we love cowering from supernatural scares, when we leave the cinema, we do so knowing that vampires aren’t really going to hurt us. That a vengeful spirit probably isn’t lurking behind the counter at our local Starbucks.

Penn State, Lightsource BP break ground on largest solar project in Pennsylvania

Solar farms will provide energy and pollinator habitat

Backyard warriors ready for lanternfly egg-laying season — but experts say check the facts first

The tail-end of summer means the moth-like spotted lanternfly will begin laying its eggs in a few weeks. Many Pennsylvania and New Jersey residents aren’t taking the threat of the invasive species lightly, and are increasingly going out of their way to kill the critters and their larvae.

Spotted Lanternfly Research: There now are answers to some questions

When the new invasive species known as the spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula) was first identified in Berks County, Pennsylvania in 2014, only a few facts were known about the insect: it is a plant hopper native to China, India, Japan and Vietnam, and the one-inch-long insect prefers to feed on the sap of grapevines, apple and stone fruit trees, hardwood trees including maple, as well as more than 70 additional species. Because of its fondness for grapevines, the spotted lanternfly (SLF) immediately became a concern for the grape and wine industry in Pennsylvania and neighboring states.

Philadelphia Police: Please Stop Calling 911 Over Spotted Lanternfly Sightings

Philadelphia police have issued a public service announcement: Please do not contact authorities if you see a Spotted Lanternfly. Instead, the department said on Twitter that the insects are not a police issue and Philly should welcome “our new insect overlords.”

Vineyards Facing An Insect Invasion May Turn To Aliens For Help

Walking around a park near Allentown, Pa., I didn't even notice the bugs at first. Then Heather Leach arrived. She's an insect expert from Penn State University.

How a Childhood Project Inspired a Life-Long Career

Michael Skvarla, Ph.D., is an extension educator and the director of the Insect Identification Laboratory at the Pennsylvania State University. While a Pennsylvania native, he graduated with his B.S. from Purdue University and his M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Arkansas, all in entomology. His graduate studies and experience at the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service in Beltsville, Maryland, give him a broad background that comes in handy when a particularly unique specimen is submitted for identification.

PSU expert explains why there are so many dragonflies

Dr. Rudolf Schilder, assistant professor of entomology at Penn State, took some time to explain why Somerset County residents are seeing so many dragonflies this month. He studies dragonfly flight and factors that impact their flight performance, usually in a laboratory.

This Bee-Focused Gen Ed That Could Save The World

The oft-memed slogan “save the bees” has been all the buzz for several years now, but who is actually making an effort to save one of the planet’s most important insects?

A fruitful new partnership for farmers and pollinators

No bees, no berries. For Bruce Hall, that’s the bottom line. “In our industry, we have a flower, and we want it to become a berry,” explained Hall, an agronomist for Jasper Wyman & Son. Better known as “Wyman’s of Maine,” purveyors of wild blueberries and other frozen fruits.

How Maine Companies, Conservationists Are Helping Native Pollinators Thrive

You may have heard it said that just about every third bite of food you take was made possible by a bee. Bees are required in the production of everything from apples to zucchini, and even important cattle feeds such as alfalfa require bees for pollination.

Survey aims to help citizens protect themselves from vector-borne illnesses

Penn State Extension has established a new vector-borne disease team that focuses on diseases transmitted by ticks and mosquitos. To ensure that its efforts address community needs, the team is launching a survey, the results of which will allow extension educators to deliver responsive programming to educate the public on vector-borne diseases, how to prevent them, and how people can protect themselves.

Indiana in the Morning Interview: Christina Grozinger

Christina Grozinger is the director of the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State. She joined us to talk about the health of Pennsylvania's bee population, and how we can help.

‘Squash It! Smash It!’: Pennsylvania Implores Residents to Kill an Invasive Bug on Sight

Hordes of spotted lanternflies are flapping through the state, threatening agriculture. “They jump, they’re big, they’re scary,” one Pennsylvanian said. “It’s like all of your worst nightmares coming to fruition.”

We Must Destroy the Spotted Lanternfly, a Useless Garbage Insect

Desperate times call for desperate measures. The Pensylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) is waging an all-out war on a tiny insect called the spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula). Researchers at the Beneficial Insects Introduction Research Unit (BIIRU), a subdivision of the PADA, in Newark, Delaware, have come up with a plan to eradicate the invasive insect once and for all, using a curious weapon: wasps.

World without insects envisioned at Penn State’s Great Insect Fair

With a theme of “Living With(out) Insects,” the 2019 edition of Penn State's Great Insect Fair will explore the widely publicized, worldwide decline of insects from 10 a.m. to 4 pm. Saturday, September 28, at the Snider Agricultural Arena on the University Park campus.

Expert explains why there are so many dragonflies

Rudolf Schilder, assistant professor of entomology at Penn State University, took some time to explain why Pennsylvania residents are seeing so many dragonflies this month. He studies dragonfly factors that impact their flight performance, usually in a laboratory.

Marjorie A. Hoy: Undaunted Pioneer, Eminent Scholar

Marjorie A. Hoy is internationally recognized for her groundbreaking research with the first laboratory-modified natural enemy deployed in a pest management program. The natural enemy had been genetically improved through selection to be resistant to three pesticide classes. Hoy is also highly regarded for the development of classical biological control of invasive pests of Florida citrus.

Be a Professional: Attend to the Insects

What kinds of ethical considerations, if any, are relevant to research, management, or conservation efforts involving insects? What limits might be appropriate for those actions? These are questions we ask as members of a profession—one that’s devoted to the study of certain organisms.

Idiosyncratic Insects

I didn’t think it would happen to me, but I have become one of those parents. You know the ones: the type who are always bragging about their children’s latest achievements, proudly showing photos to anyone who displays even the vaguest interest, and vocally declaring that their progeny are geniuses.

Seeking one Master’s student

The Barbercheck Lab is seeking one Master’s student to start in the Summer or Fall of 2020.

Beescape Monthly Update for September

As the fall season approaches, we at Beescape hope you’ve all had a productive spring/summer

Beescape Monthly Update for October

With summer now behind us and autumn nectar flows drawing to close, your honey bees will likely spend less time foraging as the temperature continues to drop.

Biopesticide holds promise in grounding spotted lanternfly

Researchers testing a biopesticide to control spotted lanternfly in areas of Norristown Farm Park this past summer are encouraged by the results and say they may have discovered a very effective weapon to stamp out the invasive pests.

Invasive Insect That Sucks the Life Out of Crops Is Spreading

The spotted lanternfly is damaging Pennsylvania vineyards and threatening other farm goods and trees. Researchers are looking at a fungus and tiny wasps as options to kill it.

Stomp and squish: Pennsylvanians battle ‘nightmare’ bugs

In the Great Spotted Lanternfly War, Pennsylvania’s citizen-soldiers are fighting back with fly swatters and vacuums, dish soap and sticky tape. They’re stomping and spraying and zapping and bragging about their kills on social media. “DESTROY THEM,” a propaganda poster urges. “Die, die, die, spotted lanternfly,” a balladeer sings.

Nanoporous Antireflection Coatings secures $75,000 in tech tournament

Invent Penn State's Tech Tournament is a showcase of disruptive technologies and early-stage companies

PSU gets $7.3 million grant for spotted lanternfly research

Spotted lantern flies have been destroying fruit trees and vineyards in the Philadelphia area.

Graduate student outreach showcases a world with and without insects at the 2019 PSU Great Insect Fair

Penn State Entomology graduate students were able to bring aspects of their research to the public at the annual Great Insect Fair (GIF). Located in the Snider Agricultural Arena, the GIF theme for 2019 was “A world with(out) insects” and students were able to showcase what our world would look like without some key critters and certainly what outreach efforts look like with graduate students at the forefront.

Speakers to discuss hungry plants, explosive beetles and the scent of fear

Interactions between insects, predators and plants may be difficult to observe, but they contain powerful clues to how we could save our crops and natural spaces. Enter the world of entomology, where plants and beetles are the masters of natural chemical weapons and the risk of being eaten is real.

How you can help prevent an invasive bug from making Pittsburgh home

Tailgates, football games and festivals. It's a busy time for people to be zig-zagging across Pennsylvania and that's causing new fears from the state. They don't want an invasive bug, the spotted lanternfly catching a ride into our area.

Spotted lanternflies pose serious threat to vineyards in Pa.

Pennsylvania is the fourth largest producer of wine in the country, but there's a serious threat affecting some of the vineyards in our area.

‘Extremely terrified:’ Wineries in Bucks facing threat from spotted lanternfly

The invasive pest has killed vines and forced the closure of wineries in Berks and Lehigh counties. Bucks County is already seeing damages, as researchers study a nearby vineyard with an eye toward solutions.

The Frost Museum’s Metamorphosis: Museum Reopens in Time for 50th Anniversary

After entering the museum, visitors who head toward the left wall will encounter a great swarm of insects. The pinned specimens are arranged in 16 repurposed insect drawers, configured in a four-by-four grid. Looking closer, visitors will observe that the insects are clustered, not randomly—but according to their taxonomic group. The eagle-eyed may notice that the size of each cluster is proportional to that group’s diversity: a cloud of flies, a battalion of beetles, a mass of moths and butterflies; just a smattering of scorpionflies, a handful of stick insects. Within the multitudes, 100 specimens are adorned with a number corresponding to a poster with more information about that species.

Truckers Advised to Watch for Invasive Spotted Lanternfly

State and federal agriculture officials in several Northeastern states are having limited success in containing the spread of the spotted lanternfly, an invasive insect from China threatening billions of dollars in crop losses.

After This Fungus Turns Ants Into Zombies, Their Bodies Explode

Evolutionary biologists retrace the history of life in all its wondrous forms. Some search for the origin of our species. Others hunt for the origin of birds.

What are those bees doing at your library?

Recently, bumble bees have been visiting libraries and museums around Pennsylvania. The bees have been helping families learn about the life sciences and how scientists study how bees and other animals live and are adapted to their environments.

Two Maryland counties under quarantine amid spotted lanternfly invasion

The spotted lanternfly’s U.S. invasion has crossed the border from Pennsylvania into Maryland.

After this mushroom transforms ants into zombies, their bodies explode

An Ophiocordyceps dipterigina mushroom on a fly in the Brazilian forest reserve Adolfo Ducke. – João Araújo on the New York Times. Some are looking for the origin of our species. Others hunt for the origin of birds.

Scorpion hitches a ride in potted plant

Holly Egan’s jungle-like home decor became a bit too authentic for her taste this week when a “very angry” house guest arrived at her Mercer home by way of a potted plant.

Pollinator project will complement Penn State solar power initiative

A unique undertaking in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences will shine a light on how solar farms can contribute to healthy ecosystems and boost pollinator populations.

Pennsylvania State Beekeepers Association promotes cross-pollination of ideas in panel discussion ‘Do you want to save the bees?’

This November, beekeepers from across Pennsylvania traveled to State College to discuss the state of the industry, provide training to new beekeepers, and to learn about recent scientific advances in bee research.

Beescape Monthly Update for November

First for this month, we want to announce some current and upcoming changes to the Beescape site!

Fighting An Insect Invasion With... An Insect Invasion

The spotted lanternfly is eating its way through trees and crops in eastern Pennsylvania. NPR science correspondent Dan Charles explains how scientists hope to stop the spread of this invasive pest by importing a natural enemy from its home in China.

Spotted lanternfly vehicle inspections suspended over winter for most employees

enn State employees whose work duties require travel to, from and within the spotted lanternfly quarantine zone in southeastern Pennsylvania now have a brief reprieve from mandatory vehicle inspections.

Extension experts: Risk of spotted lanternfly on Christmas trees is minimal

Folks worried that the spotted lanternfly will put a “bah humbug” into their holiday by taking up residence in their live Christmas tree should toss those concerns to the side like used wrapping paper, according to Penn State Extension experts.

What is the status of the spotted lanternfly in Lebanon County?

The spotted lanternfly made its presence known in Lebanon County this year, gnawing on trees from Bethel Township to Cornwall and beyond.

Tools, funds target spotted lanternfly

Research funds and new tools are fueling another year of the fight against spotted lanternfly. The colorful, polka-dotted insects are an invasive species native to China, Bangladesh and Vietnam – and a significant risk to U.S. fruit growers, especially those who grow grapes. Other crops affected by the pests include almonds, apples, blueberries, cherries and peaches.

Penn State entomological museum reopens

After being closed to the public for more than six years, Penn State’s Frost Entomological Museum has reopened with new and improved exhibits, storage facilities and research capacity.

Spotted lanternfly DNA may hold key to eradication, researchers say

Is there a better way to kill a spotted lanternfly? While stomping them out seems to be the most prevalent method, researchers now believe they are getting closer to finding a more sophisticated way to dispatch the hated invasive species.

No, Spotted Lanternflies Are Not Hiding in Your Soon-to-Be-Christmas Tree

I, like so many others, find it necessary to usher in the holidays by picking out a good ol’ Christmas tree and plopping it in a watering basin in my living room. It’s a surefire way to get into the festive spirit — and a live tree fills your home with that fresh forest smell, after all. So this past weekend, I was dismayed when my equally holiday-crazed roommate told me she might not want to get a live tree.

Much-anticipated Pollinator and Bird Garden underway in Arboretum at Penn State

Recent visitors to The Arboretum at Penn State may have noticed a bright blue construction fence surrounding about 3 acres of open meadow between the botanic gardens and the College Heights neighborhood. The fence delineates the future site of the Pollinator and Bird Garden, which will increase the size of the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens by about 60%.

Which flowers attract the most pollinators?

People often ask me "Which plants are best for pollinators?" There's no perfect answer, but I usually urge people to plant native perennials. But, is this right from the BBB (Birds, Butterflies, and Bees) point of view?

Fourteen Penn State faculty recognized with lifetime honor

American Association for the Advancement of Science fellows are honored for extraordinary achievements in advancing science

Extension experts: Risk of spotted lanternfly on Christmas trees is minimal

Folks worried that the spotted lanternfly will put a “bah humbug” into their holiday by taking up residence in their live Christmas tree should toss those concerns to the side like used wrapping paper, according to Penn State Extension experts.

Bacteria-infected mosquitoes take bite out of deadly dengue

They still bite, but new research shows lab-grown mosquitoes are fighting dangerous dengue fever that they normally would spread.

Passionate 14-Year-Old Raises Awareness – and Funds! – to Support Bee Populations

Finian Stroup has been dedicated to helping save the bees since she was 8 years old. Over the years, she has organized numerous events to raise awareness about bee declines.

Beescape Monthly Update for December

This is the fourth of our new monthly updates (December) from us here at Beescape! This month we have three main topics to discuss --

Some Pollinators Swipe Right on Annual Ornamental Flowers

When it comes to flowers, the traits humans prefer—things like low pollen production, brighter colors, and changes to the height and shape of plants—are a mixed bag for pollinators. Plants bred for larger flowers or extended bloom times may be a boon for some hungry pollinators, but structural changes in the plants can make it harder for pollinators to handle the flowers, access nectar, or even find the flowers in the first place.

Spotlight
Asian giant hornets currently not a concern for Pa., eastern North America

Recent alarming news reports aside, Asian giant hornets — sometimes referred to, hyperbolically, as "murder hornets" — are not an immediate concern in the Northeast, nor are they likely to be for a long time, if ever, according to an entomologist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

Tracking spread, testing traps are focus of spotted lanternfly study in Altoona

Assessing the potential spread of the spotted lanternfly in the Altoona area is the focus of a study underway by scientists in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences.

Common soil fungus could be ally in organic corn growers' fight against pests

A common soil fungus might be enlisted as a powerful partner by corn producers to suppress pests and promote plant growth, according to Penn State researchers, who suggest promoting the fungus could be an especially valuable strategy for organic growers who struggle with insect control.

Entomologist named Black Award recipient in College of Agricultural Sciences

Kelli Hoover, professor of entomology in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, is the recipient of the 2019 Alex and Jessie C. Black Award for Excellence in Research.

'Sustainable intensification' of cropping systems good for farmers, environment

By diversifying their crop rotations to create conditions that promote beneficial, predatory insects to combat pests, farmers can reduce their reliance on insecticides to control early-season crop pests, such as caterpillars, and still produce competitive yields of corn and soybeans.

Safe pest management in schools and childcare facilities is focus of manual

The Pennsylvania Integrated Pest Management Program, a collaboration between Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences and the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, has developed the book, “IPM for Pennsylvania Schools and Childcares: A How-To Manual.”

Spot on: Efforts to stop spotted lanternfly are ongoing for Penn State, agencies

For residents of southeastern Pennsylvania, winter provides a brief respite from the spotted lanternfly, an insect invader that has impeded their warm-weather enjoyment for the past several years. But for scientists, extension specialists and government regulatory officials, putting a stop to the pest is a year-round endeavor.

Grant will support expanded use of artificial intelligence for crop health

A research team developing artificial-intelligence-based solutions for diagnosing and managing threats to crop health has received a grant to expand the technology to assist more smallholder farmers around the world. Co-led by David Hughes, associate professor of entomology and biology, the team developed a smartphone app that is capable of accurately diagnosing crop diseases without an internet connection.

Penn State research projects awarded USDA organic agriculture grants

Three organic-agriculture projects led by faculty members in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences have received grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The funding, totaling more than $1.3 million, was awarded through USDA-NIFA's Organic Transitions Program.

Roush honored as fellow of the Entomological Society of America

Rick Roush, dean of Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, has been elected as an Entomological Society of America Fellow, an honor that acknowledges his outstanding contributions to entomology in research, teaching, extension and outreach.

Frost Entomological Museum reopens after renovations, renewal

After being closed to the public for more than six years, Penn State's Frost Entomological Museum has reopened with new and improved exhibits, storage facilities, and research capacity, much to the delight of school groups and insect enthusiasts.

Pollinator project will complement Penn State solar power initiative

A unique undertaking in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences will shine a light on how solar farms can contribute to healthy ecosystems and boost pollinator populations.

Penn State receives $7.3 million grant to advance spotted lanternfly research

A $7.3 million grant awarded to Penn State will support an interdisciplinary, multi-institutional team of researchers as they conduct research and develop strategies to combat the spotted lanternfly.

Diversity statement shows Department of Entomology's commitment to inclusivity

The Department of Entomology in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences has released its first diversity statement, which articulates the department’s goal to “cultivate a community of people who have diverse ways of thinking, views, values and perspectives and who represent the composition of our society.”

Penn State's Great Insect Fair imagines a world without bugs

Appreciating insects' role in agriculture and the environment will be the focus of Penn State's 2019 Great Insect Fair, scheduled for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 28 at the Snider Agricultural Arena on the University Park campus.

Penn State entomologists join project to track historical parasite populations

Supported by a $4.3 million grant from the National Science Foundation, a multi-institutional project will draw on Penn State entomological expertise and collections to document and digitize the historical population dynamics of arthropod parasites, such as ticks, lice and mosquitoes.

Organic control of spotted lanternfly is focus of study by Penn State, Cornell

Could soilborne fungi found nearly everywhere in North America be the kryptonite that can help control the spotted lanternfly? Studies underway in the Philadelphia region -- carried out by scientists from Penn State and Cornell University -- aim to answer that question, with early findings showing promise against what has been described as the worst invasive pest to hit the U.S. since the gypsy moth.

Cross-pollination occurs between educators and researchers at workshop

The recent Authentic Plant Pollinator Landscape Research for Educators Workshop at Penn State attracted 13 kindergarten through 12th grade educators from across Pennsylvania and beyond, and it allowed educators to work closely with members of Penn State’s Center for Science and the Schools and Center for Pollinator Research.

Asian longhorned beetle larvae eat plant tissues that their parents cannot

Despite the buzz in recent years about other invasive insects that pose an even larger threat to agriculture and trees — such as the spotted lanternfly, the stink bug and the emerald ash borer — Penn State researchers have continued to study another damaging pest, the Asian longhorned beetle.

Plants defend against insects by inducing 'leaky gut syndrome'

Plants may induce "leaky gut syndrome" — permeability of the gut lining — in insects as part of a multipronged strategy for protecting themselves from being eaten, according to researchers at Penn State. By improving our understanding of plant defenses, the findings could contribute to the development of new pest control methods.

Climate warming could increase malaria risk in cooler regions

Malaria parasites develop faster in mosquitoes at lower temperatures than previously thought, according to researchers at Penn State and the University of Exeter. The findings suggest that even slight climate warming could increase malaria risk to hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people — including travelers — in areas that are currently too cold for malaria parasites to complete their development.

Ants maintain essential interactions despite environmental flux

Ants adjust their social interactions to accommodate changes in population density, according to researchers at Penn State and Georgetown University. The findings suggest that ant colonies are capable of maintaining their sophisticated social organization despite potentially drastic changes in their environments.

Combating mosquito-borne diseases with bacteria

Viruses, spread through mosquito bites, cause human illnesses such as dengue fever, Zika and yellow fever. A new control technique harnesses a naturally occurring bacterium called Wolbachia that blocks replication of viruses and breaks the cycle of mosquito-borne disease, according to an international team of researchers.

Alumnus honors father, entomology department with professorship

The inspiration behind a person’s philanthropy can come from a variety of sources. For alumnus Dr. Roger Simon, it stems from two places: the Penn State Department of Entomology and his father, Sam Simon.

Protecting pollinators: Penn Staters working to reverse bee population declines

Within the past decade, beekeepers across the globe have observed massive declines in managed honey bee populations. Given their critical role in the nation’s agricultural industry, Penn State’s Christina Grozinger and the Center for Pollinator Research are implementing creative approaches to protecting bee populations in Pennsylvania and beyond.

Penn State graduate students visit Capitol Hill, discuss science-based policy

Members of the Penn State Science Policy Society recently visited Washington, D.C., where they met with officials from several congressional offices and nongovernmental organizations to discuss the promotion of science and evidence-based policy.

More than 100 years of data show Pennsylvania tick population shift

The prevalence of the most abundant species of ticks found in Pennsylvania has shifted over the last century, according to Penn State scientists, who analyzed 117 years' worth of specimens and data submitted primarily by residents from around the state.

Undergraduate research award creates buzz around Penn State pollinator studies

Undergraduate research aimed at supporting pollinator health is flourishing at Penn State's Center for Pollinator Research, thanks to philanthropic support.

Spotted lanternflies found to be flyers, not gliders

The spotted lanternfly is not a strong or frequent flyer, weaknesses that may hinder its ability to travel long distances by air, according to researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

Insect-deterring sorghum compounds may be eco-friendly pesticide

Compounds produced by sorghum plants to defend against insect feeding could be isolated, synthesized and used as a targeted, nontoxic insect deterrent, according to researchers who studied plant-insect interactions that included field, greenhouse and laboratory components.

Introducing Beescape: A new online tool and community to support bees

Beescape.org provides a tool for beekeepers, gardeners, growers and land managers to assess the quality of their landscapes for supporting managed honey bees and wild bees. It was developed through a partnership led by Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, Center for Pollinator Research and Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences.

Unique workshop for teachers highlights connection between plants, pollinators

The “Authentic Plant Pollinator Landscape Research for Educators” workshop, co-hosted by Penn State's colleges of Education and Agricultural Sciences, is slated for June 24-28 at the University Park campus.

Material that shields beetle from being burned by its own weapons, holds promise

Carabid beetles produce caustic chemicals they spray to defend themselves against predators, and the compound that protects their bodies from these toxic substances shows promise for use in bioengineering or biomedical applications, according to Penn State researchers.

Bee dispersal ability may influence conservation measures

The abilities of various bee species to disperse influences the pattern of their population's genetic structure, which, in turn, can constrain how they respond to environmental change, as reported by an international team of researchers.

Entomology students' global research to be supported by inaugural Guyton Award

Two students in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences are the recipients of the Guyton Award, a global learning scholarship established recently by Bill Guyton, an agricultural economist and internationally recognized expert in sustainable development.

Cellular protein a target for Zika control

A cellular protein that interacts with invading viruses appears to help enable the infection process of the Zika virus, according to an international team of researchers who suggest this protein could be a key target in developing new therapies to prevent or treat Zika virus infection.

Unique graduate student cohort will explore gender and agriculture

Faculty in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences are spearheading an initiative that will provide selected doctoral students with the opportunity for extensive study on gender and its relationship to agricultural production.

Penn State earns 'Bee Campus USA' certification

Penn State has become the 55th educational institution in the nation to be certified as an affiliate of the Bee Campus USA program, designed to marshal the strength of educational campuses for the benefit of pollinators.

Anopheles mosquitoes could spread Mayaro virus in U.S., other diverse regions

Mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles are well known as primary vectors of malaria. But a new study suggests that Anopheles species, including some found in the United States, also are capable of carrying and transmitting an emerging pathogen, Mayaro virus, which has caused outbreaks of disease in South America and the Caribbean.

Gates Foundation grant to support research on satellite crop surveillance

A research team in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences has received a Grand Challenges Explorations grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Led by David Hughes, associate professor of entomology and biology, the group will study the potential role of satellites in diagnosing crop pest and disease problems on African smallholder farms.

Citizens play a vital role in spotted lanternfly management efforts

Citizens are important allies in the fight against the spotted lanternfly, a war that is being waged in 13 counties -- Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Chester, Delaware, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Monroe, Montgomery, Northampton, Philadelphia and Schuylkill.

Fruit research and extension projects receive funding from industry groups

The State Horticultural Association of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Apple Program recently awarded nearly $233,000 in funding to support new and ongoing fruit research and extension projects in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences. The grants will support projects aimed at enhancing pest management, production efficiency and fruit quality.

Penn State's Great Insect Fair celebrates insects in pop culture

Appreciating insects' influence in popular culture will be the focus of Penn State's 2018 Great Insect Fair, scheduled for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sept. 22 at the Snider Agricultural Arena on the University Park campus. The event is sponsored by the entomology department in the College of Agricultural Sciences.

Entomology professors honored by Entomological Society of America

Two professors in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences have been lauded for their significant contributions to the field of entomology by the Entomological Society of America.

Plant virus alters competition between aphid species

In the world of plant-feeding insects, who shows up first to the party determines the overall success of the gathering; yet viruses can disrupt these intricate relationships, according to researchers at Penn State.

Penn State helps to assemble expert task force to combat spotted lanternfly

Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences helped to assemble a multistate, interdisciplinary task force of more than 80 university, regulatory and agricultural industry representatives to fight the looming threat presented by the spotted lanternfly.

College of Agricultural Sciences students awarded NIFA fellowships

Eight graduate students in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences are among the 101 recipients of fellowships from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Gluttonous grubs: Insecticide efficacy in turfgrass is focus of study

Research underway at the Joseph Valentine Turfgrass Research Center on the University Park campus is focusing on the effectiveness of a neonicotinoid insecticide — imidacloprid — in controlling grub populations.

Lanternfly's penchant for -- and potential to harm -- grapevines focus of study

The spotted lanternfly is starting to sour the grape and wine industries in southeastern Pennsylvania, and research underway in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences aims to spoil the invasive pest's party.

Penn State scientists spotlight spotted lanternfly research on Capitol Hill

As the emergence of the spotted lanternfly continues to threaten portions of Pennsylvania’s agricultural industry, two researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences who are studying the invasive insects joined colleagues from more than 20 universities on Capitol Hill today (June 6) to show members of Congress and their staffs the importance of funding agricultural research.

Climate change forced zombie ant fungi to adapt

Zombie ants clamp on to aerial vegetation and hang for months spewing the spores of their parasitic fungi, but researchers noticed that they do not always clamp on to the same part of the plant. Now the researchers know that the choice of leaves or twigs is related to climate and that climate change forced the fungi to adapt to local conditions.

Wasp warriors: Entomologists on samurai mission to slay stink bugs

Hillary Peterson is every brown marmorated stink bug's worst nightmare. The Penn State doctoral degree student does not intend to rest professionally until she and other entomologists devise a way to reduce burgeoning populations of the invasive insect, originally from Asia, which are damaging crops and aggravating people. The goal of their research is to develop biological controls to interfere with the pest's reproduction.

Pennsylvania bear mange epidemic focus of Penn State and Game Commission project

Pennsylvania's black bear population is experiencing a mange epidemic, and a Penn State research team will work with the state Game Commission to gain a better understanding of the disease and develop strategies to manage it.

Penn State Extension, ag officials look to slow spread of spotted lanternfly

Grape growers, orchardists, nursery operators, homeowners and others in southeastern Pennsylvania are bracing for the spring emergence of the spotted lanternfly, an invasive insect from Asia that appeared for the first time in the United States in Berks County nearly four years ago. Penn State Extension educators and College of Agricultural Sciences researchers are working with state and federal agriculture officials to stop the pest's spread.

Penn State-developed plant disease app recognized by Google

A mobile app designed by Penn State researchers to help farmers and others diagnose crop diseases has earned recognition from one of the world's tech giants. PlantVillage, developed by a team led by David Hughes, associate professor of entomology and biology, was the subject of a keynote video presented at Google's TensorFlow Development Summit 2018, held March 30 in Mountain View, California.

$2.1 million enables creation of decision-support tools for pollinator health

The Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State, in collaboration with researchers at the University of California, Davis; the University of Minnesota; and Dickinson College will receive more than $2 million from the Foundation for Food and Agricultural Research and the United States Department of Agriculture to translate basic research into online decision support tools to help beekeepers and land managers maintain and expand populations of managed and wild bees.

Infected 'zombie ants' face no discrimination from nest mates

Carpenter ants infected with a specialized parasitic fungus are not subjected to aggression or isolation from their nest mates, and they continue to share in the colony's food resources until they leave the nest for the last time to die, according to a study led by Penn State researchers.

Four new faculty members bring expertise to Penn State's entomology department

The Department of Entomology in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences has announced the addition of four faculty members who have joined the department during the current academic year.

College of Agricultural Sciences offers look at ag careers for STEM program

Faculty and staff from Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences provided students at Harrisburg High School's SciTech campus with a comprehensive look at the variety of disciplines that students can pursue in the agricultural sciences.

Land-grant ag research and education highlighted during visit by USDA Secretary

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue paid a visit to Penn State's University Park campus on Jan. 24 as part of a tour through Pennsylvania to unveil the Department of Agriculture's legislative principles as Congress prepares to enact a new five-year farm bill.

Researchers aim to develop best practices for organic beekeeping industry

A nearly $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture will support Penn State researchers in determining best management practices for organic beekeeping by comparing organic and chemical-free to conventional management systems. The funding comes from the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative of USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Penn State researchers take aim at invasive, 'pernicious' spotted lanternfly

As populations of the invasive spotted lanternfly explode — and the state-imposed quarantine area in southeastern Pennsylvania expands — researchers in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences are looking for solutions to help stop the insect's spread and save agricultural crops from serious damage.

'Zombie ant' brains left intact by fungal parasite

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — A fungal parasite that infects ants and manipulates their behavior to benefit the fungus' reproduction accomplishes this feat without infecting the ants' brains, according to a study led by Penn State researchers.

Penn State partners to address Republic of Georgia's invasive stink bug problem

Entomologists from Penn State are working to apply what they have learned by studying the Mid-Atlantic region's brown marmorated stink bug infestation — which peaked between 2010 and 2013 — to similar recent problems impacting the Republic of Georgia in eastern Europe.

Graduate training program in pollinator ecology gets a boost with USDA grant

A grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture will enhance an innovative Penn State graduate training program in entomology and ecology aimed at helping to solve the multifaceted problem of pollinator decline.

New mobile app diagnoses crop diseases in the field and alerts rural farmers

Researchers who developed a new mobile application that uses artificial intelligence to accurately diagnose crop diseases in the field have won a $100,000 award to help expand their project to help millions of small-scale farmers across Africa. David Hughes, associate professor of entomology and biology, Penn State, leads the project with James Legg, of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture.

Ag Department, Penn State seek public input on state Pollinator Protection Plan

Farmers, gardeners and other Pennsylvanians concerned about the health of pollinators — given their critically important role in growing and producing food — now have the chance to comment on a draft of the state’s proposed Pollinator Protection Plan. The plan, developed by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and the Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State, is designed to protect bees and other insects that pollinate nearly 75 percent of the Commonwealth’s food crops.

Penn State's Great Insect Fair offers a view of the 'unseen'

Although insects are all around us, we tend to pay attention primarily to the ones that sting, bite, eat our garden plants or invade our homes. But there is much more about the world of insects and other arthropods that goes unnoticed. Giving the public a glimpse into this fascinating world is the goal of Penn State's Great Insect Fair, which will take place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sept. 23 at the Snider Ag Arena on the University Park campus.

Video: Penn State researchers find new solution to combat age-old bedbug problem

A team of Penn State scientists has developed a potential game-changer in the war against bedbugs — a naturally derived, fungal-based pesticide that uses the bugs’ own natural tendencies to humankind’s advantage.

Researchers to develop new gene-editing method for the study of arthropods

A grant from the National Science Foundation will enable a Penn State-led team of entomologists to develop and disseminate a technology they say could bring gene-editing capabilities within reach of everyday scientists, regardless of the arthropod species they study. The $2.5 million award is part of NSF's Enabling Discovery through GEnomic Tools (EDGE) program.

Scientists to study how soil health is influenced by pest-management tactics

An entomologist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences has received a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to study and compare how various pest-management regimes affect the health of soils. John Tooker, associate professor of entomology, will lead the project, which is titled "Exploring Soil Health and Pest Management Trade Offs to Maximize Crop Productivity."

Researchers aim to eliminate malaria in Southeast Asia

Researchers at Penn State have received more than $1 million in first-year funding from the National Institutes of Health to investigate malaria transmission in Southeast Asia with a goal of working toward the disease's elimination in the region. They will receive up to approximately $9 million over seven years for this project.

Researchers recruiting citizen-scientists for 'Great Pumpkin Project'

A researcher in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences is reaching out to Master Gardeners, teachers, students and other interested parties to participate in a citizen-science project that ultimately could benefit growers, crops, pollinators and the environment. "The Great Pumpkin Project" is aimed at describing the geographic distribution of important crop plants and the insects and microbes with which they interact.

Study demonstrates bed-bug biopesticide could defeat insecticide resistance

A fungal biopesticide that shows promise for the control of bed bugs is highly effective even against bed-bug populations that are insecticide resistant, according to research conducted by scientists at Penn State and North Carolina State universities. The study suggests that Aprehend, a mycoinsecticide developed at Penn State, likely will provide an important new tool for managing bed-bug infestations, which have surged in recent years.

Bedbugs beware: New research may beat back bedbug epidemic

A new biopesticide developed by Penn State scientists has the potential to turn the bedbug control market on its ear, thanks to a robust entrepreneurial ecosystem taking root at Penn State that’s helping to push crucial discoveries out of the laboratory and into the marketplace.

Scientists reveal core genes involved in immunity of honey bees

A core set of genes involved in the responses of honey bees to multiple diseases caused by viruses and parasites has been identified by an international team of researchers. The findings provide a better-defined starting point for future studies of honey-bee health, and may help scientists and beekeepers breed honey bees that are more resilient to stress.

Coalition asks Congress for more funding to support agricultural research

The head of Penn State’s Department of Entomology is among a coalition that includes top scientists from 11 research universities in Washington, D.C, today (March 2) calling for stronger federal support of the food and agricultural sciences.

Three-way dance between herbivores, plants and microbes unveiled

What looks like a caterpillar chewing on a leaf or a beetle consuming fruit is likely a three-way battle that benefits most, if not all of the players involved, according to a Penn State entomologist.

Common crop chemical leaves bees susceptible to deadly viruses

A chemical that is thought to be safe and is, therefore, widely used on crops — such as almonds, wine grapes and tree fruits — to boost the performance of pesticides, makes honey bee larvae significantly more susceptible to a deadly virus, according to researchers at Penn State and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Considering cattle could help eliminate malaria in India

The goal of eliminating malaria in countries like India could be more achievable if mosquito-control efforts take into account the relationship between mosquitoes and cattle, according to an international team of researchers.

Beescape Monthly Update for January

This is the fifth of our new monthly updates (January 2020) from us here at Beescape!

Scientists examine potential economic impact of spotted lanternfly in PA

If not contained, the spotted lanternfly potentially could drain Pennsylvania’s economy of at least $324 million annually and cause the loss of about 2,800 jobs, according to a study carried out by economists in Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences.

2021 Apes Valentes Graduate Student Award

We are now accepting applications for the for the 2021 Apes Valentes Graduate Student Award for research and other projects in pollinator biology and health!

Insecticides becoming more toxic to honey bees

Researchers discover that neonicotinoid seed treatments are driving a dramatic increase in insecticide toxicity in U.S. agricultural landscapes, despite evidence that these treatments have little to no benefit in many crops.

Poster Presentations: Tips and Trick

Poster presentations are a staple of academic conferences. They’re a valuable way to share research visually, and it pays to know how to design one well. The good news is, we seem to be living in a time of a new poster renaissance!

Insecticides Have Become More Toxic to Bees Over the Last 20 Years

Farmers might not be using as much insecticide as they used to, but those they do use appear to be more toxic today than they were 20 years ago. In some states, these chemicals are 121-times as toxic for bees in 2012 as they were in 1997, a study published in Scientific Reports found.

One of the most common North American bumble bee species is actually two species

Bumble bees are some of our most abundant and recognizable pollinators, essential for the pollination of many native flowering plant species. As such, the diversity of bumble bees has a long history of study by both professionals and amateurs. Because of such extensive study, it is felt that new species of bumble bees are unlikely to be found. Outstanding controversies remain, however, in what comprises a given bumble bee species.

Study: Spotted lanternfly costing Pennsylvania $50M annually

The spotted lanternfly, an invasive pest from Asia that is wreaking havoc on valuable trees and vines, is costing the Pennsylvania economy about $50 million and eliminating nearly 500 jobs each year, according to a Penn State study released Thursday.

Nasty stuff hunters find on and in their deer: Oozing green gunk, huge warts, parasitic insects and more

A white-tailed deer, its neck bulging with huge, ugly, wart-like growths, has made startling headlines out of Alabama. But many hunters were already familiar with the grotesque growths on the buck, and many other strange things they find on and in their deer.