Bark Beetle Bind-Tree Pests

Conifer bark beetles are tree pests of the genera Dendroctonus, Ips, Scolytus who prey primarily on pines (Pinus) but also additional evergreens such as fir (Abies), spruce (Picea), arborvitae (Thuja), others. Trees that are already under stress from drought, insufficient root area or damage, transplanting or disease are at higher risk for a bark beetle infestation. Young, healthy trees…

Intolerable Invasion

Invasive species find their way into the country via unchecked boxes, pallets, luggage and hitchhiking on animals. Once here they can multiply and spread unchecked due to the lack of natural predators and because it may take some time before we realize there is a problem, containment and elimination becomes near impossible. Unfortunately, often the…

Bolstering Biological Controls

The emerald ash borer beetle (Agrilus planipennis or EAB) is an exotic pest first discovered first in Detroit in 2002. It is thought that the borers arrived in the United States in solid wood packing on shipping containers from Asia. Since its initial discovery populations have been found in 20 additional states and in Ontario, Canada.…

Strain from Stress?

Colony collapse has been a hot topic since the large decline of honeybee populations was noted several years ago. Since then many theories postulating various causes have made the rounds, each one has its merits and detractors and in the end it is possible that all are contributing factors. The most recent theory suggests that stress…

Termite Mound Mitigation

A Princeton University research team has found that termites can actually slow the desertification process by creating small oases of plant life. Their results suggest that not only prevent the spread of deserts into semi-arid ecosystems and agricultural lands but can also increase their resilience to climate change. In the arid savannas and grasslands termite…

The Buzz on Native Bees

We hear a lot about honeybees now, with colony collapse posing a large, ominous threat to our agricultural industry and therefore populations, but often overlooked are the wonders and benefits of native bees. Native bees are incredibly diverse, with over 4,000 known species, they also display unique behaviors and biological quirks. Wildlife photographer, Clay Bolt,…

Hemorrhaging Hemlocks

A recent study has discovered that hemlocks in New York’s Catskill region are declining rapidly. Research conducted collaboratively by the U.S. Forest Service and the University of Vermont utilized ground-based research in addition to high-tech aerial imaging to survey 274 square miles of the Catskill mountains in 2012. Data suggested that only 16% of the…

Pad Pests

One of the biggest annoyances of winter are all the pests that look for asylum from severe weather in our homes, and those that follow knowing an easy meal is within reach. Thank goodness we have a mightily effective exterminator nearby. House centipedes, Scutigera coleoptrata, may hold the distinction of being some of the creepiest…