The case for permethrin-treated clothing to prevent tick bites keeps getting stronger. In new experiments conducted at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, clothing treated with an insecticide known as permethrin had strong toxic effects on three primary species of ticks known to spread disease-causing pathogens in the United States. Exposure to permethrin interfered with the ticks' ability to move properly, making them sluggish and likely interfering with their ability to bite.
The large and small, beautiful and bizarre are among the newly discovered animals, plants and microbes announced by the College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) as the Top 10 New Species for 2018.
A high abundance of flowering grasslands in agricultural landscapes is beneficial: these grasslands provide shelter for predatory beetles and spiders and help farmers control pests.
A molecular study carried out on the chestnut gall wasp, Dryocosmus kuriphilus, has revealed the absence of genetic variability in this invasive species, a chestnut-tree parasite, in Europe. This is due to the fact that the wasp's reproduction is strictly parthenogenetic, the females produce more females without having to be fertilized by a male. The high capacity of reproduction of the females, producing genetically identical daughters, give this insect a high invasive potential.
Ants do not always take the shortest route when they are in a hurry. Their navigational system occasionally makes them take detours to speed up their journey.
Bordenstein's team studied Nasonia parasitic wasps, which are about the size of a sesame seed, and they serve as one of the best models to dissect and characterize the evolution of insect genomes.
More Canadian cities will experience damage from the emerald ash borer than previously thought. As a result of climate change and fewer days of extreme cold, the beetle may eat its way further north than originally estimated.
Adding probiotics to bees' food helps make them more resistant to nosemosis, a fungal infection associated with colony collapse disorder that has been observed in Europe and North America over the past 20 years. Probiotics can decrease the mortality rate of this infection in bees by up to 40 percent, report researchers at Université Laval in the most recent edition of Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution.
What happens when pests resist all forms of herbicides and pesticides? To slow the evolutionary progression of weeds and insect pests gaining resistance to herbicides and pesticides, policymakers should provide resources for large-scale, landscape-level studies of a number of promising but untested approaches for slowing pest evolution.
Mosquito saliva alone can trigger an unexpected variety of immune responses in an animal model of the human immune system.