Parasite Palooza Jan. 22 at Bohart
The Bohart Museum of Entomology of UC Davis is hosting an open house on “Parasite Palooza: Botflies, Fleas and Mites, Oh, My” from 1 to 4 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 22 in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge Building, Crocker Lane.
Senior public health biologist Mike Niemala of the California Department of Public Health, who received his master's degree from UC Davis, will participate in the three-hour open house, discussing ticks and other health issues, and handing out fliers and brochures. Nematologist Lauren Camp, who received her doctorate in December from UC Davis, studying with Steve Nadler, professor and chair of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, will discuss nematodes.
The event, to also spotlight such arthropod parasites as lice, mites, and bed bugs, is free and open to the public. -more-
Drug Developed in Hammock Lab: New Hope for Alzheimer's DiseaseBruce Hammock, distinguished professor at the University of California, Davis, yields hope for the prevention of Alzheimer's, a severe and chronic psychiatric disease that affects more than 350 million people worldwide.
Researchers at the Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan China, used the drug developed at UC Davis to show that the neurofibrillary pathology of an Alzheimer's disease-related protein could be dramatically reduced. Their work was published in December in the Journal of Huazhong University of Science and Technology.
“They further demonstrated the mechanism of action of the UC Davis drug in blocking the oxidative stress-driven phosphorylation events associated with Alzheimer's disease,” Hammock said. The UC Davis drug stabilizes natural anti-inflammatory mediators by inhibiting an enzyme called soluble epoxide hydrolase (sEH) discovered at UC Davis and recently spotlighted in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Institutes of Health's PubMed. -more-
Robbin Thorp Helped Sound the Alarm About Rusty-Patched Bumble Bee
That's the sound of success.
And bumble bee expert Robbin Thorp, UC Davis distinguished emeritus professor of entomology, was a part of it.
The beleaguered rusty-patched bumble bee, Bombus affinis, is now listed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as an endangered species, the first bee in the continental United States to be listed under the Endangered Species Act.
Thorp, co-author of Bumble Bees of North America: An Identification Guide (Princeton University) helped sound the alarm.
He co-authored a 2010 petition seeking an endangered status for Bombus affinis. The Xerces Society of Invertebrate Conservation, along with Thorp and others, submitted the petition to the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 2013. In 2015, agency officials agreed to consider it. In 2016, they proposed protection. Then on Jan. 10, 2017, the Fish and Wildlife Service listed the rusty-patched bumble bee as an endangered species. -more-
Christian Nansen: UC Davis Book Project Presentation on Jan. 18
The community book project is Raj Patel’s book,”Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System.”
Born and raised in Denmark, Nansen has lived overseas since 1993 – in Portugal, Benin, US, UK, Australia, and again in the United States. He joined the UC Davis faculty in 2015 as an assistant professor in insect ecology and remote sensing. Sustainable pest management solutions in agricultural systems is a key component of his research, and his team is focusing on deployment of drones and imaging systems to optimize stress detection of pest outbreaks. As a hobby, he is converting his Davis back and front yards into an urban farming system. In the seminar, he will cite several important reasons why urban and suburban citizens should increase their level of self-sufficiency and resilience when it comes to food production.
Free Webinars on Pollination of Specialty Crops
A series of webinars on "Ensuring Crop Pollination in U.S. Specialty Crops," set Jan. 24 through March 28, will feature five researchers with the Integrated Crop Pollination Project (ICP), including ICP co-principal investigator and pollination ecologist Neal Williams of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology.
Williams will speak Feb. 28 on On-Farm Pollinator Benefits for Watermelon Pollination. Williams, an associate professor of pollination and biology and a Chancellor's Fellow, serves as the faculty co-director of the UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center and is a member of UC Davis Agricultural Sustainability Institute. His applied research addresses the integration of wild and managed bees for pollination of diverse agricultural crops including seed production, row crops and orchards. -more-
Ant Specialist Marek Borowiec Receives International Award
The award recognizes a graduate student for distinguished research and scholarly activity in the field of social insect biology. Borowiec received a certificate, honorarium, and a one-year subscription to Insectes Sociaux.
Borowiec is now a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of evolutionary biologist/ant specialist Christian Rabeling of Rochester, N.Y. The lab will be moving to Tempe, Ariz. in January.
“What is notable about Marek is that even as he became trained as a highly accomplished molecular phylogeneticist and computational biologist, he remained focused on organism-centered questions, driven by a deep and abiding appreciation of natural history,” said Ward. -more-
UC Davis/China Connection
Xu, professor of agro-ecology at the China Agricultural University (CAU), is on a yearlong sabbatical in the Hammock lab. He received assistance in obtaining the grant from project manager Bruce Hammock and program manager Shirley Gee, now retired, both co-investigators.
“This is a highly competitive program and this grant is a huge honor for Ting and for Shirley Gee,” said Hammock, who holds joint appointments in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology and the UC Davis Comprehensive Center. -more-
UC Davis Bee Courses Announced: Learn How to Keep, Manage and Breed Bees
If want to become a beekeeper or learn more about working your colonies, rearing queens, managing varroa mites, and breeding bees, the E.L. Niño Bee Lab at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Research Facility has announced its list of 2017 courses, which begin March 11 and continue through June 11.
The courses, directed by Extension apiculturist Elina Niño of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology and taught by her and her staff, will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Laidlaw facility on Bee Biology Road, UC Davis. Registration is now underway, and gift certificates are also available. -more-
Hugh Dingle on NPR: 'Bugs Abound'
"The holiday season is a time when lots of people take to the air, flying to see relatives or go on vacation," wrote Nell Greenfieldboyce. "But when it comes to seasonal travel, humans are totally outnumbered by insects."
Dingle is the author of the newly published second edition of the popular textbook, Animal Migration: the Biology of Life on the Move (Oxford University Press), a sequel to to the first edition, published in 1996.
Can You Find the First Cabbage White Butterfly of 2017? Beer for a Butterfly
Find the first cabbage white butterfly of 2017 in the three-county area of Sacramento, Yolo, Solano--and win a pitcher of beer! Beer for a butterfly. Suds for a bug. What could be better than that? UC Davis distinguished professor Art Shapiro sponsors the annual contest, launched in 1972, as part of his long-term studies of butterfly life cycles and climate. See more information on Bug Squad.
Nansen, Vannette to Present Evolution and Ecology Seminars
Two UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology faculty members will present seminars as part of the Evolution and Ecology winter schedule. The seminars begin Jan. 12 and conclude on March 16.
- Assistant professor Christian Nansen will speak on "Droplets of Evolutionary Biology: Theoretical Modeling of Resistance Evolution to Insecticides" from 4:10 to 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 19 in 100 Hunt Hall. Host is Jenny Gremer at email@example.com.
- Assistant professor Rachel Vannette will discuss "Microbial Community Assembly and Function in Plant-Pollinator Interactions" from 4:10 to 5:30 p.m., Thursdays, March 16 in 100 Hunt Hall. Host is Jenny Gremer at firstname.lastname@example.org
Diane Ullman Seminar on Jan. 18
"The Western flower thrips (WFT), Frankliniella occidentalis [Pergande] is an extremely small and ubiquitous insect with a host range exceeding 1200 plant species," she says. "They damage crops worldwide through their feeding and transmission of plant viruses, earning the title supervector due to their role as the primary vector of tospoviruses, high reproductive rates, polyphagous nature and resistance to most pesticides. This seminar will explore tospovirus replication in Western flower thrips, resulting in behavioral modifications and changes to expression of salivary genes."
The department's winter-quarter seminars take place every Wednesdays through March 15. All are held from 4:10 to 5 p.m. in 122 Briggs Hall. Coordinator is assistant professor Christian Nansen. See seminar schedule.
In the Spotlight
- Department News
- Department Seminars for Winter Quarter
- Oscar Bacon: 1919-2016
- 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
|Christian Nansen Book Project Presentation||1/18/2017|
|Diane Ullman Seminar||1/18/2017|
|Bohart Museum Open House: Parasite Palooza!||1/22/2017|
|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)