Flowers boost predatory insects’ pest control skills

Predatory insects are super pest controllers. Planting flowers can help them help farmers to reduce the use of pesticides.

Katherina Killander-U. Copenhagen • futurity
Jan. 25, 2021 ~6 min

insects pesticides pollination earth-and-environment flowers

Is the dormancy of flies possible in people?

New research with flesh flies clarifies how the insects switch from dormancy to arousal. The findings raise some sci-fi possibilities.

Kirsten Romaguera-U. Florida • futurity
Jan. 21, 2021 ~5 min

insects science-and-technology hibernation

Wing imprints reveal dino-era praying mantis

Researchers have identified a new species of praying mantis after discovering imprints of its fossilized wings in present-day Quebec.

Katherine Gombay-McGill • futurity
Jan. 19, 2021 ~6 min

evolution insects fossils wings new-species science-and-technology

One termite lineage took over by switching diets

"Termites are mostly misunderstood," says entomologist Thomas Chouvenc. Tracing their evolution shows they do more than eat wood and destroy homes.

Lourdes Rodriguez-U. Florida • futurity
Jan. 15, 2021 ~7 min

evolution insects termites science-and-technology earth-and-environment

Killer cotton and planes dropping moths wiped out these pests

The invasive pink bollworm has inflicted tens of millions of dollars in damage annually. Biotech cotton and sterile moths helped eradicate it in the US.

Rose Brandt-Arizona • futurity
Dec. 22, 2020 ~7 min

insects pesticides genetic-engineering crops earth-and-environment cotton

Grasshopper cages reveal trouble with shifting habitats

New research looks at what could happen to plant communities on alpine grasslands if grasshoppers from lower elevations settled there.

Peter Rüegg-ETH Zurich • futurity
Dec. 22, 2020 ~6 min

climate-change insects plants ecosystems earth-and-environment

Mealworms vs. grasshoppers: Which fails the ‘yuck’ test?

Insects, like mealworms and grasshoppers, are a sustainable, climate-friendly food source. But for kids at least, grasshoppers fail the "yuck test."

Katherina Killander-U. Copenhagen • futurity
Dec. 21, 2020 ~5 min

sustainability climate-change insects food earth-and-environment

Farmer ants could teach us a thing or two

Ants have been farmers for tens of millions of years and have even solved a problem we haven't. They know how to cultivate climate-resilient crops.

Ida Eriksen-U. Copenhagen • futurity
Nov. 5, 2020 ~6 min

climate-change insects ants fungus science-and-technology earth-and-environment

New wasp may be a parasite of a parasite

Researchers have discovered a new species of wasp with a role in an insect horror story playing out on the stems and leaves of oak trees.

Jade Boyd-Rice • futurity
Oct. 28, 2020 ~10 min

evolution insects trees new-species wasps parasites science-and-technology

Beetle that can survive a car tire may inspire tough materials

Getting run over by a car isn't a near-death experience for the diabolical ironclad beetle. How it survives could lead to materials with the same toughness.

Amy Patterson Neubert-Purdue • futurity
Oct. 21, 2020 ~7 min

insects materials-science biomimicry science-and-technology