All posts by Erfan Vafaie

Greenhouse & Nursery Regulatory Compliance Workshop 2017 – Notes and Resources

Another year and another successful greenhouse and nursery workshop here in Overton. We had many great speakers and are very grateful for our sponsors. I have included some summaries and resources from some of our speakers down below. I have created links below that will direct you to information pertinent to each speaker below. In the case where the speaker has given consent to share their presentation, I have also included that too.

Dr. Shaadi Khademi, MD & Dr. Vanessa Casanova, PhD – Pesticides: Exposure, Health Effects, and Safety Education
UT Health Northeast

Mrs. Kathy (Katherine) Newton – How to Comply with WPS Revisions
Texas Department of Agriculture

TDA Compliance Resources

Dr. Steven Arthurs – Integrated Pest Management for Greenhouse and Nursery
Department of Entomology, Texas A&M University

Mr. Daniel Cunningham – Water U Doing for Texas Horticulture?
Department of Horticulture, Texas A&M University


Continue reading Greenhouse & Nursery Regulatory Compliance Workshop 2017 – Notes and Resources

IOBC Canada 2017 – Part III

This post is a part of a series of notes taken at the International Organization of Biological Control 2017.

Go back to Monday’s Agenda

Foraging and egg-laying behaviour of the coccinellid predator Rhyzobius lophanthae
Marjolein Kruidhof, Wageningen University & Research, BU Greenhouse Horticulture

  • Diaspis boisduvalii scales in cymbidium; major problem in Netherlands and they don’t know what to do anymore to control
    • Due to restrictions of use of chemicals (i.e. neonics), they have been unable to control the scale
  • Cage experiment; comparison of different natural enemies of Diaspis boisduvalii scales
  • Tried 8 different treatments, different release rates and frequencies of release of Rhyzobius lophanthae larvae or adults (with or without ephestia eggs)
  • In control, plant was covered with the scale at the end (5 weeks later)
    • When releasing R. lophanthae adults and ephestia eggs, got excellent control
  • R. lophanthae is a predatory beetle
    • Adults are about 2.5mm in small
    • Specialist predators of the Diaspididae family
    • Lays eggs under the shields of adult female scales

Continue reading IOBC Canada 2017 – Part III

Jon Nemati – Ext. Demonstration Tech

Jonathan Nemati first joined the Six-legged Aggie team in early May of 2015 before returning to the center in April 2017. He graduated from LeTourneau University in 2016 with a B.S. in Biology.

He has had an interest in wildlife since he was little, collecting and observing a wide variety of wildlife as a hobby as well as studying to improve his knowledge of them. He also enjoys reading, hunting, hiking, fishing and a wide variety of sports. He intends to pursue graduate studies in ecology.

Jon’s role this summer will be to assist in data collection, analysis, and writing reports related to crapemyrtle bark scale, aphid, and thrips management.

Briton Grove – Ext. Demonstration Tech

Briton Grove is a graduate of University of Texas at Tyler with a BS in Biology and a minor in Biochemistry. 

She is interested in how the study of insects could help advance our understanding of antibiotics and disease. Her previous research experience including studying how CRISPRs grant acquired immunity to many viruses and how this tool could be used in autism research. She intends to start a master’s program this fall (2017) at University of Texas at Tyler, concentrating on entomology. For her master’s thesis, she will examine the roles that bacteria play in the stabilization of fungus-gardening ants and their symbiont fungi, including the use of antimicrobial compounds.

In her free time, Ms. Grove enjoys camping, traveling, and gardening. She also gives back to her local community by volunteering with Texas Mission of Mercy as a dental assistant, providing free dental care to low income residents.

Ms. Grove will be assisting Erfan Vafaie with research on the crapemyrtle bark scale, thrips, and aphid management this summer as an Extension Demonstration Technician.

IOBC Canada 2017 – Speaker Summaries

The International Organization for Biological Control (Nearctic Region and West Palearctic Regional Section) had a meeting in Niagara Falls (Ontario) from June 4th – 8th, 2017. Below is a list of the talks that I took notes for. When the notes for that talk are published, the title will become a clickable link. Since there were many talks and I need to gather my notes into coherent ideas presented by the speakers, I will be publishing notes progressively over time. Check back later if a title you are interested below is not yet posted.

Monday, June 5th, 2017

Title Speaker
Biological control in greenhouse IPM systems: Where we’ve been, where we are, and where we need to go? Michael Brownbridge, Vineland Research & Innovation Centre
Session: Innovative Strategies that Enhance Biological Control
Innovative strategies that enhance the cost-effectiveness, reliability and efficacy of arthropod-based biocontrol in greenhouse crops Shimon Steinberg
BioBee
What secret holds the fog? Testing the fate of biologicals from the nozzle to the plant surface Michael Brownbridge, Vineland Research & Innovation Center
A new method for loading predatory mites with entomopathogenic fungi for biocontrol of their prey Gongyu Lin, Institut de recherche en biologie végétale de l’Université de Montréal
Modifying the expression of plant volatiles to affect the behaviour of greenhouse insect pests Ian Scott
Plant-provided food increases indirect defence through manipulation of a mutualism Pete Nelson
Efficiency of different biocontrol agents to control Tetranychus urticae on greenhouse pepper crops S. A. El Arnaouty
Evaluation of maize/Banks grass mite (Oligonychus pratensis) banker plant system in tomato Carol Glenister
Which is the best strategy against foxglove aphid? Michelangelo La Spina
Euphodes americanus and Leucopis annulipos as potential BCAs of foxglove aphid at low temperatures Marc Fournier
Standardization of a mass-rearing system of Apanteles gelechiidivoris Marsh (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) Jessica Morales
Foraging and egg-laying behaviour of the coccinellid predator Rhyzobius lophanthae Marjolein Kruidhof
Improved monitoring of vine weevil (Otiorhynchus sulcatus) adults Tom Pope
A ‘little and often’ system for application of entomopathogenic nematodes for vine weevil control Jude Bennison

Continue reading IOBC Canada 2017 – Speaker Summaries