Spotlight: Ralph Washington Jr.
Listen to graduate student Ralph Washington Jr. in his TedXUCDavis talk on "Science, Poverty, and the Human Imagination."
Ralph Washington, Jr. is a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, and a second-year Ph.D. student in Entomology and Nematology. He is the chair of the UC Davis Graduate Student Association, the co-chair of the UC Council of Student Body Presidents, and one of the leaders of the UC Davis Black Graduate and Professional Students Association. Through these endeavors, Ralph has had the convenient opportunity to pursue his commitments to both science and social justice. He will continue doing so during his future career as a research professor, by presenting science to low-income children. Ralph spends his free time reading books on myriad topics.
Public Reception to Honor Entomology Class of Scientists/Artists
Students in Professor Diane Ullman's Entomology 1 class, which fuses art with science, will be showing their work at a public reception from 6 to 8 p.m., Tuesday, May 31 in the Third Space Collective, 946 Olive Drive, Davis.
The event, billed as "Totems, Glass and the Movies," is free and open to the public.
Some 56 students participated, Professor Ullman said. "The students have really worked hard and for the first time ever we have stop-action movies, led by Allison Simler, and glass fusion artworks, led by entomology graduate student, Joanna Bloese."
Donna Billick and Diane Ullman led students in creating totems with clay, cement and mosaic. Ullman and Billick co-founded and co-directed the UC Davis Arts/Science Fusion Program.
"We are looking forward to introducing the UC Davis community to the fine work of our students, Ullman said.
Ullman, former associate associate dean for undergraduate academic programs, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, and former chair of the UC Davis Department of Entomology, is noted for her research, teaching and public service.
She received the Entomological Society of America's distinguished teaching award in 2013. -more-
California Master Beekeeper Program!Elina Lastro Niño, is now recruiting for its first-ever California Master Beekeeper Program (CAMBP). The deadline to fill out the application form is Wednesday, June 1. Notifications of acceptance will be made by June 15.
Its mission: “To provide science-based education to future stewards and ambassadors for honey bees and beekeeping. The apprentice level is designed to build a solid foundation of basic beekeeping skill and knowledge. When participants achieve this level they may opt to stop or continue on to the more advanced levels: journeyman and master levels.”
“We are extremely excited about launching this program which will bring timely and most current beekeeping and other pollinator information to the stakeholders in California," said coordinator Bernardo Niño. "With the increased interest in beekeeping and need for continued public education we really want to engage those who love bees as much as we do be the true bee ambassadors in their communities." -more-
A Lesson in Plant Communication Gone Viral Through TED-Ed
And now UC Davis ecologist Richard “Rick” Karban's research is “talking” in TED-Ed Original Lessons and drawing international attention from thousands of teachers, their students and other Internet viewers.
Karban's work on plant communication is featured in an interactive lesson plan where "words and ideas of educators are brought to life by professional animators.” Teachers can customize the lesson plan to engage their students. As of May 13, nearly 130,000 have accessed the lesson plan.
Plants can eavesdrop, sense danger in the environment, and can distinguish friend from foe, says Karban, a professor in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, who recently published a 250-page comprehensive book, Plant Sensing and Communication (University of Chicago Press), hailed as a landmark in its field. -more-
UC Davis Medical Entomologist: Novel Way to Render Female Mosquitoes InfertileAnthony Cornel, Ph.D. is targeting the potential spread of the Zika virus mosquito vector, Aedes aegypti, using a novel control strategy that renders the female mosquitoes sterile.
Male Aedes aegypti mosquitoes infected with a bacterium, Wolbachia pipientis, are being released in Clovis, Fresno County, where this mosquito was discovered in June 2013. Although this mosquito is now found in California, there has been no locally transmitted case of the Zika virus in the state.
The project, to determine dispersal and survival, began Monday, May 10.
“The daytime-biting mosquito, which feeds predominantly on humans, has spread to at least seven counties since its discovery in Clovis,” said Cornel, a mosquito researcher and faculty member with the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology and the UC Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center, Parlier.
“The biting nuisance and potential of the mosquito Aedes aegypti to transmit Zika, Chikungunya and dengue viruses in California is cause for concern,” he said. “Efforts to curb its spread and reduce populations have not been very effective. Control efforts have included educating the public to remove standing water (source reduction) insecticide barrier sprays and bacterial larviciding.” -more-
Hammock Lab: Paper of the Month
The researchers found that a chemical inhibitor of a soluble epoxide hydrolase may be a new, innovative tool to control depression, a severe and chronic psychiatric disease that affects 350 million persons worldwide.
Soluble epoxide hydrolase, or sEH, is emerging as a therapeutic target that acts on a number of inflammatory or inflammation-linked diseases, said NIEHS grantee Bruce Hammock, who holds a joint appointment in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, and the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center. -more-
Lynn Kimsey Receives Academic Senate's Distinguished Public Service Award
Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum of Entomology and professor of entomology at UC Davis, received the Academic Senate's Distinguished Scholarly Public Service Award May 2 at a ceremony in the Buehler Alumni Center.
Gathering for a photo: Andre Knoesen, chair of the Davis Division of the Academic Senate; Lynn Kimsey; Acting Chancellor Ralph Hexter; and Robin Erbacher, chair of the Academic Senate's Public Service Award Committee.
Sand Protects Plants from Predators
Now UC Davis researchers have found that some plants excrete a stickylike glue to entrap sand so predators won't eat them.
Graduate student Eric LoPresti and his major professor, ecologist Rick Karban, professor in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, found that two plants, sand verbena Abronia latifolia and the honeyscented pincushion plant Navarretia mellita appear to deliberately make themselves unappealing with a coat of “sand armor.”
Sand entrapment on plant surfaces is called psammophory or sand armor, they said in newly published research in the journal Ecology. -more-
Christine Merlin Seminar: Monarch Migration and Circadian ClockChristine Merlin, assistant professor in the Department of Biology, Texas A&M University, will speak on "The Monarch Butterfly Circadian Clock: from Clockwork Mechanisms to Control of Seasonal Migration" from 12:10 to 1 p.m., Wednesday, June 1 in Room 230 of Wellman Hall.
Merlin joined Texas A&M's Department of Biology in the fall of 2013 and is a member of the Center for Biological Clocks Research.
The seminar, sponsored by the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, will be hosted by assistant professor Joanna Chiu. This is the last noon-hour seminar of the spring quarter. -more-
In the Spotlight
- Department News
- Our Department's Spring Seminars (PDF)
- Ed Lewis: IPM Award from PBESA
- Shirley Luckhart: Outstanding Teacher and Mentor
- William Reisen: National Honor
- Steve Nadler, Chair of Department
- Rick Karban's Plant Communication Book
- Watch UC Davis Bee Symposium Presentations on YouTube
- Bohart Museum's Schedule of Open Houses
- 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
|Exhibit Reception: Totems- Glass and the Movies||5/31/2016|
|Christine Merlin Seminar||6/1/2016|
|Greg Lanzaro Seminar||6/8/2016|
|Conference on Pollinator Biology- Health and Policy||7/18/2016|
|International Congress of Entomology (ICE)||9/25/2016|
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)