Category Archives: Extension News

Website offers critical mosquito, disease information after Hurricane Harvey

by Gabriel Saldana, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications DALLAS — Visitors to the Mosquito Safari website at http://mosquitosafari.tamu.edu will find comprehensive information on common mosquitoes, the diseases they carry and instructions for controlling the pest, said Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service entomologists. They said the information is critical in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, whose initial rains forced mosquitoes from their habitats into human areas, and whose residual standing waters have created new environments for mosquito breeding. “The best thing people can do to fight this pest is to… Read More →

Invasive Bagrada bug may cause ‘stink’ in South Central Texas

by Paul Schattenberg, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications SAN MARCOS — The Bagrada bug, Bagrada hilaris, an invasive stink bug that has been slowly spreading through the southwestern U.S. for the past decade, has recently been reported in Hays County, said a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service entomologist. “This bug can cause serious crop damage as well as cause damage to plants in commercial nurseries and home gardens and landscapes,” said Molly Keck, AgriLife Extension entomologist and integrated pest management specialist, Bexar County. Keck said adult Bagrada bugs have… Read More →

AgriLife Extension community fire ant control program a template for success

by Paul Schattenberg, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications ROUND ROCK – For more than a decade, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service integrated pest management program specialist Wizzie Brown has been engaged in a community-wide battle against one of the state’s most persistent pests – the fire ant. Since 2005, Brown and residents of the Wood Glen community in Round Rock, north of Austin, have collaborated in a neighborhood fire ant program to control the proliferation of fire ants, eliminate their unsightly mounds and keep them from biting area residents…. Read More →

Entomology Department Helps Youths Practice for 4-H, FFA Judging Contests with Annual Clinic

COLLEGE STATION, Texas—More than 170 members of the Future Farmers of America and 4-H youth programs statewide and their agricultural science teachers, adult leaders and county agents spent a rainy Saturday morning learning about entomology, entomology contests, and testing their insect identification skills in the Heep Center during the Entomology Judging Clinic on Saturday, March 4. The annual half-day clinic is designed to help 4-H and FFA students with skills to collect, prepare, and identify insects, to learn about their biology and relationships to different environments, all in… Read More →

Extension Names Drake, Gonzales as IPM Agents

The Department of Entomology and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service would like to welcome John David Gonzales and Dr. David Drake as the newest members of the growing statewide integrated pest management group. Gonzales and Drake started their Extension Agent-IPM positions on February 1, with Gonzales serving the Muleshoe area and Drake serving the Commerce area. Gonzales replaced Erin Jones while Drake replaced Dr. Jim Swart after he retired in December 2014. Before joining the Commerce position, Drake worked as an Extension Agronomist for 8 years at the… Read More →

Tomberlin Named AgriLife Research Fellow, Extension Entomology, IPM Agents Receive Superior Service Awards

COLLEGE STATION, Texas—The Department of Entomology has started the New Year off right as it celebrates the recipients of the latest round of awards given at the 2017 Texas A&M AgriLife Conference. The awards were given during the Research and Extension awards presentation on Tuesday in the Memorial Student Center’s Bethancourt Ballroom. Dr. Jeff Tomberlin was honored as a Texas A&M AgriLife Research Faculty Fellow, an honorific title he will keep throughout his tenure at Texas A&M.  This was awarded for his outstanding research in the field of… Read More →

Kerns Named Statewide Integrated Pest Management Coordinator

COLLEGE STATION–The Department of Entomology and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service would like to welcome Dr. David Kerns to the faculty as Professor and Statewide Integrated Pest Management Coordinator. Kerns started December 1 and is based in College station. Before joining A&M, he was the Jack Hamilton Regents Chair in Cotton Production in the Department of Entomology at Louisiana State University since April 2011 located at Winnsboro at the Macon Ridge Research Center. At LSU, Kerns was responsible for conducting entomological research at Macon Ridge and St. Joseph… Read More →

Educating the public about Zika is now AgriLife Extension’s ‘priority-one’

COLLEGE STATION – Educating the public to protect themselves from Zika has become “priority one” for the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, a state leader said. AgriLife Extension is tasked with educating the public on a great number of topics for all ages, but in a bold unprecedented move, the agency has harnessed its statewide presence to prepare the public against this ever-increasing threat, said Dr. Susan Ballabina, executive associate director, College Station. “As I expect most Texans are aware, the Zika virus — spread mainly by the A. aegypti and A…. Read More →

Department Welcomes Joel Webb As New Extension Agent-IPM

The Department of Entomology and the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service would like to welcome Mr. Joel Webb as the new Extension Agent-IPM for the area covering Tom Green and Runnels Counties. Webb joined the IPM Program on June 1 where he replaced the position that was formerly held by Rick Minzenmayer who retired in 2015. Before joining Extension, Webb worked for three years as a Research Associate in Weed Science and Crop Systems and 3 years as a Research Technician in the Vegetable Department at the Texas… Read More →

AgriLife Extension experts inform Texans on protecting from Zika, other mosquito-borne diseases

By: Paul Schattenberg and Steve Byrns, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications SAN ANTONIO – Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service entomologists are informing Texans on how to protect themselves from the mosquito vectors that spread Zika and other diseases. “The ongoing outbreak of the Zika virus has spread throughout most of South America, Central America and the Caribbean,” said Sonja Swiger, AgriLife Extension entomologist, Stephenville. “The effects this virus will have on the United States are not entirely known, but experts are concerned about the possibilities.” According to health officials,… Read More →