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

June 26, 2018

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.

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

June 26, 2018

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

Scientists find evidence of 27 new viruses in bees

June 22, 2018

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.

Spotted Lanternfly impacts eastern vineyards

June 21, 2018

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.

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

June 21, 2018

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

Faculty Spotlight: John Tooker

June 14, 2018

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.

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

June 14, 2018

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.

Extreme form of mange spreading among Pennsylvania black bears

June 13, 2018

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

Vineyard helping researchers understand damage lanternflies can do

June 13, 2018

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

What Can Bees Teach Us About Building Better Urban Ecosystems?

June 11, 2018

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

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

June 7, 2018

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.

Zombie fungus enslaves ants based on climate conditions

June 7, 2018

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

Zombie ants’ final resting place sealed by the trees

June 7, 2018

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

Penn State scientists spotlight spotted lanternfly research on Capitol Hill

June 6, 2018

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.

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

June 4, 2018

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.

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

June 1, 2018

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

Faculty Spotlight: Beth McGraw

May 31, 2018

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.

Climate change forced zombie ant fungi to adapt

May 29, 2018

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.

Native Bees prove their worth

May 23, 2018

Story and photos by Jim Hale

Mange in Bears in Pennsylvania Reaches Epidemic Rate

May 23, 2018

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.

Answer for controlling stink bug population may rest with other pests

May 23, 2018

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.

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

May 23, 2018

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

PDA Joins USDA, Penn State to Combat Spotted Lanternfly

May 23, 2018

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.

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

May 23, 2018

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.

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

May 21, 2018

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.

SciArt: Interacting with Zombie Ants

May 18, 2018

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.

Leach named spotted lanternfly extension associate at Penn State

May 18, 2018

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.

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

May 17, 2018

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

Is Malaria's Peculiar Odor Key to Its Conquest?

May 17, 2018

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.

Penn State Master Gardener programs promote pollinator populations

May 16, 2018

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."