Frank Zalom Co-Chairs International Entomology Leadership Summit
Integrated pest management specialist Frank Zalom, distinguished professor of entomology, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, and a past president of the 7000-member Entomological Society of America (ESA), co-chaired and organized an International Entomology Leadership Summit that spanned two days at the International Congress of Entomology (ICE) meeting in Orlando, Fla. This was the inaugural meeting of the Grand Challenges in Entomology Initiative. ESA is committed to thinking and acting more globally, enhancing its influence by establishing a science policy program, identifying attainable challenges for entomology that could lead to sustainable solutions for some of the world's important insect-based problems, and more effectively communicating what entomologists do to improve the human condition. -more-
Red Blotch Disease Makes Cover of JournalFrank Zalom and research biologist Mysore "Sudhi" Sudarshana of the USDA's Agriculture Research Services (ARS), is featured as the cover story of this month's special focus issue, "Disease Management in the Genomics Era," in the journal Phytopathology.
The cover features a photo of feeding injury caused by the three-cornered alfalfa hopper, Spissistilus festinus. Last year the Zalom team hypothesized that the three-cornered alfalfa hopper could transmit the Grapevine red blotch-associated virus, GRBaV, based in part on phylogeneic analysis of coat protein sequences of 23 geminiviruses that revealed that GRBaV-CP was most similar to that of another geminivirus that was transmitted by another treehopper. Their research, published in the journal, confirmed that the alfalfa hopper “was able to both acquire the virus from a grapevine infested with GRBaV and transmit the virus to healthy grapevines in the laboratory.” -more-
Retreat for Faculty, Graduate Students
Faculty and graduate students with the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology--and others associated with an ENT/NEM lab--got together for a retreat, held Friday, Oct. 14 through Sunday, Oct. 16 at Sagehen Creek Field Station in Truckee.
Doctoral candidate (and photographer) Sandy Olkowski shared some of her photos of the activities, including insect collecting and dinner preparation. She also took s photo of deer at the campsite. -more-
Bruce Hammock: FDA's Ban on Triclosan, 'Story with a Good Ending"Bruce Hammock who sounded the alarm about triclosan with several other scientists funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), says the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's recent ban of 19 over-the-counter antibacterial chemicals, including triclosan and trilocarban, is the right thing to do.
Triclosan and trilocarban are widely used antibacterial chemicals found in cosmetics, soaps, shampoos, toothpastes, body washes and many other household products.
Hammock initiated the work on triclosan through the NIEHS/UC Davis Superfund Program that he directs, pulling together researchers from multiple colleges on campus, including the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine and the School of Medicine. -more-
Malaria Mosquito's Host Choice Linked to Genetic Component
The research, published in the Sept. 15 edition of PLOS Genetics, involved the study of Anopheles arabiensis, in Kilombero Valley in Tanzania. The mosquito is the primary vector of malaria in east Africa.
"We know that blood feeding preference among mosquitoes can be species specific,” said co-author and professor Greg Lanzaro, who leads the Vector Genetics Laboratory, UC Davis Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology and is an affiliate of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology. “For example, there are mosquito species that specialize in feeding on amphibians or reptiles. We also know that many species are more catholic when choosing a meal and this can have important implications to human health—it's how some disease agents move between animals and humans.” -more-
UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center Helping Students
Two UC Davis entomology graduate students, Patricia Bohls and Maureen Page, have each received a $6700 stipend, thanks to philanthropic donations and the UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center's efforts to support students engaged in research, teaching and outreach. Bohls, who is seeking her doctorate in entomology, with a focus on honey bee queen rearing and health, studies with Extension apiculturist Elina Niño. Originally from Macedonia, Ohio, Bohls received her bachelor's degree in neuroscience and environmental studies at Hiram (Ohio) College. Page, who began her graduate students this fall with pollination ecologist Neal Williams, associate professor of entomology, is exploring pollinator communities in response to agricultural management and the benefits of providing diverse floral habitat. She completed her undergraduate work at Scripps College, Claremont, Calif. -more-
Systemic Insecticides May Not Work as Well During Drought--Christian NansenChristian Nansen.
“Weather patterns associated with climate change may adversely affect the performance of some of the most important insecticides, systemic insecticides, against coleopteran and lepidopteran pests,” Nansen says.
“These insecticides depend on efficient water and nutrient uptake through the root system and on vascular flow – both mechanisms may be partially compromised under drought conditions,” Nansen points out. “This leads to lower uptake and non-uniform distribution of systemic insecticide in plant tissues – and therefore, higher risk of pests NOT acquiring a lethal dosage.” -more-
Marek Borowiec Seminar: Oct. 26Marek Borowiec, formerly of the Phil Ward lab, will speak on "Genomic Data and the Tree of Life: Known Knowns, Known Unknowns, and Unknown Unknowns of Army Ant Evolution" from 4:10 to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 26 in 122 Briggs. He received his doctorate in June. This is his exit seminar.
"Ants are the world's most successful eusocial organisms." he says. "Long history, high species diversity, and extreme variety of life histories make them an excellent group in which many evolutionary questions can be addressed."
His research interests include phylogeny, taxonomy, biogeography, and natural history of ants. He is now a postdoc with the lab of evolutionary biologist Christian Rabeling of Rochester, N.Y. who works on ants. The lab will be moving to Tempe, Ariz. in January.
Borowiec received his master's degree in 2009 from the Department of Biodiversity and Evolutionary Taxonomy, University of Wroclaw, Poland. (See more information on department's web page.)
List of Seminars. A list of the department's fall seminars through Nov. 30, is here. All will take place on Wednesdays from 4:10 to 5 p.m. in 122 Briggs Hall. This is a change from the previous noon-hour seminars.
In the Spotlight
- Department News
- Department's Fall Seminar Schedule
- Bohart Museum's Special Weekend Open Houses
- Shirley Gee: 40 Years of Service
- Anthony Cornel: Novel Way to Render Female Mosquitoes Infertile
- Rick Karban's Plant Communication Book
- Watch UC Davis Bee Symposium Presentations on YouTube
- Eric Grissell: Giving Back
- History of Our Bee Garden
Blogs, Books, and Other Connections
- Alex Wild's Compound Eye Blog: Some of Best Nature/Science Photographs
- UC Davis Department of Entomology (Facebook)
- Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility (Facebook)
- Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven (Facebook)
- E.L. Niño Bee Lab (Facebook)
- Bug Squad blog (Kathy Keatley Garvey)
- Robbin Thorp Co-Author of California Bees and Blooms
- Robbin Thorp Co-Author of Bumble Bees of North America
- Apiary newsletter, from the UC apiaries (Elina L. Niño)
- Apiary newsletter, from the UC apiaries (archived, Eric Mussen)
- New Ant Book (free): Photos by Alex Wild
- Insect Note Cards, Benefitting UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center
|Marek Borowiec Seminar||10/26/2016|
|John McNamara: Storer Lecture||10/27/2016|
|Mead Making Bootcamp||1/12/2017|
|Western Apicultural Society 40th Anniversary Conference||9/5/2017|
Bee Biology (Website, the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility is under construction. See history of bee garden)
Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven Also see Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven Annual Report
Apiary Newsletters (archived copies, Eric Mussen)
How to Write Like a Professor (James R. Carey)
What's This Bug? (CDFA)