Category Archives: Extension News

Cattle tick, handling demonstrations featured at 47th South Texas Cow-Calf Clinic

by Blair Fannin, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications BRENHAM – Ranchers working cattle this fall and winter, or surveying pastures and wildlife, need to be mindful of ticks harboring on livestock and forage habitats. Dr. Pete Teel, Texas A&M AgriLife Research entomologist in College Station, recently gave a tick update at the 47th South Texas Cow-Calf Clinic in Brenham. Teel discussed a variety of ticks common to Texas, including those that have not entered the Lone Star state and pose potential health consequences not just for cattle, but for… Read More →

Incredible Edible Insect Event in San Antonio a ‘tasteful’ experience

By Paul Schattenberg, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications SAN ANTONIO — More than 300 people attended the recent Incredible Edible Insect Event held in the culinary garden area of the San Antonio Botanical Garden. The event, which included a four-course tasting of foods made with insect-based ingredients, was presented by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Bexar County in collaboration with the botanical garden and other nature-oriented organizations. Each tasting was of a chef-demonstrated recipe in which insects or insect-based ingredients were used. Featured chefs included Dave Terrazas,… Read More →

Children learn about insects, science at Summer Bug Camp

by Paul Schattenberg, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications SAN ANTONIO – For the past 10 summers, a Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service entomologist has been sharing her love of insects, nature and science with Bexar County youth. “Each summer we conduct three regular Summer Bug Camps for kids ages 7-12 along with a junior entomology camp for kids 4-6 years old,” said Molly Keck, AgriLife Extension integrated pest management specialist, Bexar County. “The regular camps are from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. over a three-day period and the junior… Read More →

Mike Merchant Receives Specialist of the Year Award During County Agents Annual Meeting

The awards keep coming for Dr. Mike Merchant as he received the District 4 Texas County Agricultural Agents Association’s Specialist of the Year Award during its annual meeting. Merchant is a professor and Extension entomologist currently working at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Dallas. He began his career as an entomologist in 1989 in District 4, which includes the Dallas area, where he started many outreach projects and programs in urban entomology. Merchant was the original author of “Texas Two-Step” method of controlling fire… Read More →

Entomologists, Extension Specialists Learn Latest Research at National Conference on Urban Entomology

Several members from the Department of Entomology joined more than 200 entomologists to share their research during the 2018 National Conference of Urban Entomology and Invasive Pest Ant Conference in May at the Embassy Suites in Cary, North Carolina. The four-day-long conference helps to bring urban and medical entomologists, pest control specialists, and members of the pest control industry together in a common setting to share information and search for new and innovative ways to help control pests that threaten people’s homes and health. During the conference, several… Read More →

AgriLife Extension program bolsters Texas schools’ pest management approach

by Gabe Saldana, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications DALLAS — More than a decade of work alongside Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service experts in integrated pest management, or IPM, has culminated in national certification of four Texas school districts as “IPM Stars,” said Janet Hurley, AgriLife Extension school IPM specialist in Dallas. IPM Star certification from the IPM Institute of North America was awarded in April to Plano, Conroe, East Central and Killeen independent school districts for consistent exemplary marks on the institute’s 37-point evaluation. IPM is the practice… Read More →

Mike Merchant Receives Award for Distinguished Career from Texas A&M AgriLife Extension

The Department of Entomology would like to congratulate Professor and AgriLife Extension Specialist Dr. Mike Merchant for receiving the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service’s Superior Service Award for Distinguished Career during a ceremony in Bryan on January 9. Merchant received the award for his outstanding service and commitment to the field of urban entomology for 28 years serving the Dallas-Fort Worth area. He started as an entomologist in 1989 in the District 4 offices and has been instrumental in starting many important outreach projects and programs in urban… Read More →

New AgriLife Extension Service graphic guides target school pests

by Gabe Saldana, Texas A&M AgriLife Communications DALLAS —Three new infographics and two detailed publications from the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service help demystify the best practices for controlling pests in schools, universities and other areas where humans occupy close quarters. “The average person, while not a pest control expert, is definitely affected when an infestation occurs,” said Janet Hurley, AgriLife Extension specialist in school integrated pest management, Dallas. “That means the average person is integral to controlling pests, especially where large groups of people converge.” Hurley, co-author of… Read More →

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 →