Monthly Archives: May 2014

Educating with Biocontrol Beetles

The Air Potato, Dioscorea bulbifera, is an invasive noxious weed in South Florida. In a previous post, I described efforts at biological control using the leaf feeding Air Potato Leaf Beetle, Lilioceris cheni. Students at Terra Environmental Research Institute, a … Continue reading

Posted in by jjneal, Education, Invasive Species, Pest Management | 3 Comments

Friday Cat-erpillar Blogging: Reprieve Over

At daylight on Monday morning, May 19, 2014, an airplane buzzed back and forth just above the treetops spraying a fine mist. After several rain delays, gypsy moth eradication has begun. The spray contains a protein, collected from a bacteria, … Continue reading

Posted in Caterpillar Blogging, Invasive Species, News, Pest Management, Policy | 4 Comments

Wasp Waist

Wasps are easily recognized by the narrowing of the abdomen, a feature that is rare in other groups of insects. Wasps belong to the order Hymenoptera but not all have an abdominal constriction. Several families such as sawflies lack an … Continue reading

Posted in behavior, by jjneal, Taxonomy | 1 Comment

How Do Flies Land on the Ceiling?

We have all seen flies flit through the air and land on the ceiling. How do they get there? One might think they could do a barrel roll. However, flies cannot gain altitude when flying sideways and cannot fly upside … Continue reading

Posted in behavior, by jjneal | 2 Comments

Taxonomy of Small Arthropods

DNA markers have been a great aid to insect taxonomy. The right DNA markers can be consistent within a species and consistently differentiate species. Most species were described prior to the advent of molecular technology. It is important to associate … Continue reading

Posted in by jjneal, Environment, Taxonomy | 1 Comment

Living Without Antennae

Protura lack antennae. Antennae of insects are primarily mounting sites for mechano- and chemo-receptors. The antenna structure is typically elongated, enabling an insect to collect information in front and to the side of its body. Genetic evidence suggests that antennae … Continue reading

Posted in behavior, by jjneal, Environment | Leave a comment

Iowa Insect Art

This summer, The Dort Campus Center Art Gallery in Sioux Center, Iowa will host the “Iowa Insect Series” collaborative work of artists and Graphic Designers, David Versluis and Roy R. Behrens. David Versluis describes the collaboration: The process began in … Continue reading

Posted in Art, by jjneal | 1 Comment