Monthly Archives: May 2016

Living With Insect Swarms

NOAA’s National Weather Service uses doppler radar to track thunderstorms and other weather events. Interpretation of Doppler Signals are made empirically. The doppler signal is matched to simultaneous events on the ground. This enables weather forecasters to differential weather events … Continue reading

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Living With Red-Spotted Purples

Today I was visited by a red-spotted purple butterfly. These butterflies are noted for feeding on sap and rotting fruit. They do well in urban areas where many of the street and backyard trees, such as black cherries and willows, … Continue reading

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No Easy Solutions

Insect issues are not typically featured in newspaper cartoons. The political wrangling over public health funding to address the expanding Zika Virus epidemic has made its way to the NYTimes Sunday Cartoon Strip. ¬†In an environment where our governing elites … Continue reading

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At The Tip of Their Tongue

Standing next to a clump of Nicotiana flowers on warm summer nights in Indiana, I sometimes hear the loud hum of hawkmoths. Tobacco hornworm moths fly at night and collect nectar from flowers of Nicotiana. The Nicotiana flowers are closed … Continue reading

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Living With Butterfly Wings

Butterfly wings have been described as “billboards” advertising the species and properties of the owner. Butterfly wings have an overall color motif, but also smaller patches of color. These color spots can signal male or female as in the cabbage … Continue reading

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Living With Monarch Population Decline

Census counts of Monarch populations at their overwintering site in Mexico have document a population decline over the past 2 decades. Several explanations for this decline have been proposed but data is inconclusive. One popular explanation relates¬†declines in Monarch population … Continue reading

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Living With Insect Taste

The association of Lepidoptera with small groups of related plants is a well developed paradigm. Plants differ in their chemical defenses and caterpillars differ in their ability to detoxify chemicals. Caterpillars have limited mobility and cannot travel long distances to … Continue reading

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