How to manage plant pests and diseases in your victory garden

The COVID-19 pandemic has boosted interest in home gardening. Three scientists who garden explain some basic methods for controlling common insects and microbes that can spoil your crop.

Carolee Bull, Professor of Plant Pathology and Systematic Bacteriology, Pennsylvania State University • conversation
July 2, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: bacteria covid-19 insects soil plants fungi viruses integrated-pest-management gardening nematodes weeds land-grant-universities plant-health victory-garden

Moths do the pollinator night shift – and they work harder than daytime insects

New research sheds light on the unsung heroes of pollination.

Richard Elton Walton, Postdoctoral Research Associate in Biology, Newcastle University • conversation
May 19, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: insects plants pollinators pollination ponds moths nocturnal

What are Asian giant hornets, and are they really dangerous? 5 questions answered

Are 'murder hornets' from Asia invading North America? A Japanese entomologist who's been stung by one and lived to tell the tale explains what's true about these predatory insects.

Akito Y Kawahara, Associate Professor and Curator of Insects, Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida • conversation
May 11, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: insects agriculture wildlife japan entomology pollinators asia invasive-species honeybees wild-bees

Want to help rare birds? Dig a pond

Ponds create 'insect chimneys' which are a boon for hungry farmland birds.

Mike Jeffries, Associate Professor, Ecology, Northumbria University, Newcastle • conversation
April 28, 2020 ~5 min

Tags: biodiversity birds insects agriculture bird-conservation farmland ponds

Insects: worldwide study reveals widespread decline since 1925

The largest study of insect declines to date gives us the best indication of how species all over the world are faring.

Stuart Reynolds, Emeritus Professor of Biology, University of Bath • conversation
April 23, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: conservation biodiversity insects entomology bugs freshwater-biology insect-decline

Insects: worldwide study reveals general decline since 1925

The largest study of insect declines to date gives us the best indication of how species all over the world are faring.

Stuart Reynolds, Emeritus Professor of Biology, University of Bath • conversation
April 23, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: conservation biodiversity insects entomology bugs freshwater-biology insect-decline

Bees seeking bacteria: How bees find their microbiome

Humans obtain bacteria through the foods they eat. But how do bees collect bacteria that live in and on them? And where do they pick up these microbes?

Lila Westreich, PhD Candidate, School of Environment and Forest Sciences, Seattle, Washington, University of Washington • conversation
April 14, 2020 ~8 min

Tags: environment insects bees antibiotics microbiome spring

Crops could face double trouble from insects and a warming climate

Plants have evolved techniques for protecting themselves from heat and insect attacks – but when both these stresses happen at once, one defense may neutralize the other.

Nathan Havko, Postdoctoral Fellow in Plant Research, Michigan State University • conversation
April 7, 2020 ~7 min

Tags:  climate-change  insects  agriculture  plants  heat-wave  crops  tomato  food-security

Wildlife conservation needs to change – and the game of Jenga can help us see why

The game is a fantastic metaphor for understanding how extinctions cause ecosystems to become more fragile.

Darren Evans, Reader in Ecology and Conservation, Newcastle University • conversation
March 18, 2020 ~8 min

Tags:  conservation  insects  wildlife  ecosystem  complexity  networks  games  interdisciplinarity

Malnourished bugs: Higher CO2 levels make plants less nutritious, hurting insect populations

Insect populations are falling as what they eat becomes more like iceberg lettuce and less like kale.

Ellen Welti, Postdoctoral Researcher of Biology, University of Oklahoma • conversation
March 9, 2020 ~5 min

Tags:  climate-change  insects  carbon  biology  plants  carbon-dioxide-co2  nutrients  entomology  kansas  bugs  grasshoppers  food-webs  prairies  research-brief

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