Cool Weather Pests

first_imgAs the weather cools across the state, several fall insects will begin to take center stage around Georgia homes. Be on the lookout for these nuisance pests and make preparations to deter them from entering your home for the winter.Asian needle antsUniversity of Georgia entomologist Dan Suiter tells homeowners to be on the lookout for a particularly problematic ant called the Asian needle ant (Brachyponera chinensis). This invasive species was first reported in the U.S. in the 1930s in Decatur, Georgia. “For decades this ant hasn’t been considered an issue, but over the past several years population sizes have exploded, and they are now a major pest in Georgia, especially in the northeast and northwest,” explained Suiter.Unlike the more widely known fire ant or Argentine ant — commonly referred to as the “sugar ant” — the Asian needle ant does not build mounds, so it can be difficult to spot this ant species. They establish colonies of up to a couple thousand ants by nesting under logs, stones and bark. When disturbed, they can deliver a very painful sting, similar to fire ants, but the venom can be quite toxic — even fatal, in some cases, should sting victims suffer from anaphylaxis.Many pest ant species lay down pheromones to help establish a well-defined foraging trail for other ants of the same colony to locate food sources, but the Asian needle ant does not forage in this manner. They instead exhibit a very unusual behavior called “tandem carrying,” where one female worker ant will carry another worker ant in her mandibles. Once a food source is located, she will put her sister down and they will forage together.“The other interesting and somewhat alarming thing about this species is its ability to quickly devastate other native ant species by either taking over their nest sites, consuming their food or by directly preying upon them,” Suiter said. “In the spring while temperatures are still cool, the Asian needle ant will become active and begin establishing colonies before other ant species, so they tend to dominate available habitat earlier and are driving local extinctions of other ant species where we’ve seen them colonizing.”County University of Georgia Cooperative Extension agents and forest service employees have been reporting higher incidences of this species in the last few years, especially in northeast Georgia. “We’re not exactly sure of their range yet, but they are probably not as common in south Georgia as they are in north Georgia,” said Suiter.Argentine antsA familiar occurrence for anyone who lives in Georgia is the annual migration of Argentine ants into homes during the fall and winter months. “When we start having cold snaps beginning in October, this ant will start to invade homes looking for a warm place to overwinter,” explained Suiter.Argentine ants don’t go into diapause like other insects, so this migration indoors is a survival mechanism to get through the winter. They will typically find overwintering spots in walls and around electrical devices that put off heat, such as printers or refrigerators.“Argentine ants are what most of us call ‘sugar ants.’ They don’t really bother us during the summer, as they spend most of their time in trees foraging for honeydew from aphids and scale insects,” said Suiter. “This species can have hundreds of queens within a colony, so they spend all summer building their colonies and this is the time of year that population sizes peak — just before coming indoors — so they quickly become a nuisance of homeowners right about now and into winter.”Suiter recommends heading off issues now before they become a problem in the upcoming weeks and months. He tells homeowners to clean up outside of structures to help prevent these ants from collecting and moving indoors. “Argentine ants thrive in mulch and leaf litter because they hold moisture, so horticultural mulches and leaf litter should be minimized. Try not to allow leaf litter to collect in gutters and around the base of homes,” instructed Suiter.If insecticide use becomes necessary, available commercial products that contain fipronil, such as Termidor or Taurus — a liquid insecticide — can be mixed with water and applied directly to ants found outside. Never spray these products indoors! “It is sometimes advisable to find ant nests in mulch and leaf litter and spray nests directly,” explained Suiter. “Typically, no more than 1 gallon of diluted, finished product is needed to control Argentine ants on the outside.”Suiter reminds homeowners to always read and follow the product’s label, as the label contains the manufacturer’s directions for use and provides instructions on what can and cannot be done with the product. Many insecticides, for example, are toxic to fish and other aquatic life and should never be used in areas where they can get into water.Wasps and yellow jacketsLastly, be mindful of wasps and yellow jackets this time of year. As the weather becomes cooler and more tolerable, people tend to spend more time outdoors, where entertainment often includes food and drink. This is also the time of year that wasp and yellow jacket population sizes are at their peak.“As we know, tailgating and fall barbecues are always a favorite pastime this time of year, but this is also the time that yellow jacket encounters spike,” explained Suiter. “When we see wasps and yellow jackets in these social settings it’s important to understand they are not approaching you in a protective or aggressive manner, as they aren’t trying to guard their nest. They’re interested only in foraging from whatever food you have lying around. So, we recommend that people not swat at them or panic, but just be sure to check your soda can before taking a sip to avoid being inadvertently stung.”To learn more about pests in and around the home, visit UGA Extension’s Structural Pest Management website at extension.uga.edu/programs-services/structural-pest-management.last_img read more

READ MORE

New ways to add value for your membership

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » I’m kind of an app freak. Well, really, I am a rebate, savings, make some money on the side app freak. I love them. My obsession began a few years ago when I was trying to do a “fun apps to help save you $$$” newsletter article. I downloaded, tested them, hated some, loved others. I scanned bar codes, receipts, clicked through to sites from the apps to earn some percentage of my purchases. Saw some become obsolete or consolidated and of course new improved, more innovative, easier to use ones crop up. Years later I still love them. I have my three favs currently and….more importantly….my kids LOVE THEM!Ok. So, moms and dads out there… this blog’s for you. “Mom, can I have $$? I’m going to the mall.”“Mom, this month’s Ipsy is on fire. Can I subscribe monthly for only $12 with your credit card?”“Mom, this bag of 35 ring pops that I absolutely must have is only $7. Can I buy it? (meaning – I’m putting it in your Target cart.)last_img read more

READ MORE

Singh half-century keeps Jaguars afloat after Cornwall snags 4-41 on rainy first day

first_imgLEEWARDS Hurricanes all-rounder Rakeem Cornwall bagged 4 important wickets, but a defiant 50 from Vishaul Singh kept the Guyana Jaguars in the hunt following the rainy first day at Providence. The defending champions were 115 for 4 from 54 overs with Singh unbeaten on 53 with 4 fours. He and all-rounder Raymon Reifer (4*), will resume on day two.Cornwall, West Indies off-spinning power-hitter snagged 4-41 as he continued to be a thorn in the Jaguars side.Rakeem CornwallBatting first after winning the toss under some overcast weather, opener Tevin Imlach, who replaced the injured Chandrapaul Hemraj, was bowled for a boundary-less 28-ball score of 2 by Cornwall.His partner at the top of the order, Tagenarine Chanderpaul, also failed to trouble the scorers as he too fell to the spin of the all-rounder and was pinned lbw not long after a painstaking 9 off 40 balls, as the off-spinner had Guyana reeling at 14-2 from in 13 overs.The new pair of veteran left-handers in Johnson and Singh, immediately applied themselves after Cornwall had his way with the openers.The pair of out-of-favour West Indies Test players chipped away at the Hurricanes bowlers and helped the champs reach their 50 without any trouble ahead of lunch. Johnson stroked 5 fours while his partner had three before rain put a pause on play for most of the afternoon session.Following an inspection at 16:20hrs, the covers were removed, and play restarted with the pair looking to carry their bats to the final ball of the day.Cornwall had other plans as he knocked over Jaguars captain with a beauty which flung Guyana into a spot of bother, as Singh was left unbeaten when the bails were lifted. Action continues at 10:00hrs today. (Clifton Ross)last_img read more

READ MORE

Should mosquitoes be eliminated?

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest A Purdue researcher and a team of scientists working on a new insecticide argue that mosquitoes should not simply be made extinct due to their role in various ecosystems.Catherine Hill, a professor of entomology, and her team are developing an insecticide that will suppress mosquitoes’ ability to transmit diseases without killing the insect or interfering with other life forms. The team is based in Discovery Park, a research park dedicated to using interdisciplinary teams to solve global problems. Hill’s research was one of the winners of Discovery Park’s Big Idea Challenge, a program that provides resources to interdisciplinary teams with innovative research.“For the last 20 years I’ve been trying to figure out how to kill mosquitoes, and then I had this epiphany where, morally, I’m just not OK with it anymore,” she said.There has been a lack of research in preserving mosquitoes because researchers have looked mostly at ways to eradicate them. Therefore, Hill thinks it is essential to consider all the possible effects of wiping out an organism that has existed for thousands of years. She points out that mosquitoes have co-evolved with many species, so there are likely other organisms that depend on them as a food source.Along with her non-lethal pesticide research, Hill also participates in research to create insecticides that overpower a crucial chemical for locomotion behavior, development learning and memory known as dopamine. This eventually results in the death of the insect. Although this method is often effective in killing mosquitoes, Hill decided to produce an insecticide that would affect the biology of the mosquito so that it would be unable to transmit to another host, thus sparing the insect’s life.During her years of research, Hill says she began to find mosquitoes to be amazing and beautiful organisms, and began to better understand that their removal could have an effect on the environment. She points out that mosquitoes are “a large part of the biomass in many ecosystems.”While mosquitoes are in their aquatic stage, they serve as a food source for fish and predatory insects. During this stage, mosquitoes also serve as filter feeders, which results in organic matter being turned over, making them excellent converters in an ecosystem.In their terrestrial stage, mosquitoes serve as food for birds, bats, salamanders, lizards, frogs and other animals. According to Hill, there are particularly massive numbers of mosquitoes in Alaska and near the Arctic Circle, and it could potentially be dangerous to take away mosquitoes from that food chain.“To yank [mosquitoes] out abruptly, I don’t know what that does,” Hill says.According to Hill, there are several thousand species of mosquitoes worldwide, with only a small percentage of those species carrying diseases. Researchers know very little about the species that do not transmit disease, so this leaves a lot of unanswered questions concerning what would happen if mosquitoes were wiped out.“You pull one little piece and start to unravel it, and things happen,” says Hill.An interesting fact about mosquitoes that Hill discovered is that “they sing to each other.” The wings of mosquitoes beat at varying frequencies, and it is thought that female mosquitoes use the frequency of the male’s wings to choose a mate. Once the male and female locate one another, their frequencies harmonize.Although Hill wants to find an insecticide that can spare the life of the insect, she says that research is still being done to improve the effectiveness of insect-lethal insecticides. Due to the increasing threat of vector-borne diseases, a conventional pesticide would need to be administered if the research for a non-lethal pesticide proves unsuccessful.last_img read more

READ MORE

Rafael Nadal admits ‘hard to return to court’ after Monte Carlo shocker

first_imgThe 32-year-old said he played “one of my worst matches in 14 years on clay” in losing 6-4, 6-2 to Italian Fognini, having been forced to save three match points at 5-0 in the second set.“It will be hard to return to the practice court,” a subdued Nadal said after his fourth loss to Fognini, three of which have come on his beloved clay.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“I lost an opportunity in a very important event for me. I’m sad for that.”Nadal has struggled with knee injuries this season, and was playing his first event since withdrawing before an Indian Wells semi-final against Roger Federer last month. (FILES) In this file photo taken on April 20, 2019 Spain’s Rafael Nadal reacts during the semi final tennis match against Italy’s Fabio Fognini at the Monte-Carlo ATP Masters Series tournament in Monaco. – Rafael Nadal admitted that it will be “hard to return to the practice court” after a shock semi-final defeat by Fabio Fognini ended his bid for a record-extending 12th Monte Carlo Masters title on Saturday. The 17-time Grand Slam champion starts his Barcelona Open title defence on Wednesday April 24, 2019, as he also fights to keep his world-number-two ranking before the French Open gets underway next month. (Photo by YANN COATSALIOU / AFP)Rafael Nadal admitted that it will be “hard to return to the practice court” after a shock semi-final defeat by Fabio Fognini ended his bid for a record-extending 12th Monte Carlo Masters title on Saturday.The 17-time Grand Slam champion starts his Barcelona Open title defense on Wednesday, as he also fights to keep his world-number-two ranking before the French Open gets underway next month.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated MOST READ Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:15SC chief Peralta wants US-Marshall patterned security for PH judges01:51SC gives QC court one month extension to resolve Maguindanao massacre case02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss “There was little chance for me to start the clay-court season in a perfect way,” he insisted.“It was a bad day, the kind of day where the feeling is not there at all. It’s difficult to find positive ways today.”Nadal was close to losing his first set to love in Monte Carlo since the 2005 final, where he beat Guillermo Coria in four sets.“I was lucky to win two (second-set) games to avoid an even worse score,” he admitted.“I’m thinking about how bad I played today, (trying to) understand the things.ADVERTISEMENT ‘Champion for years to come’ Naomi Osaka out to conquer clay SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte LATEST STORIES Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid “Coming back from injuries, winning and winning and winning is not easy.“(It’s been a) year and a half of not having the chance to play tournaments in a row (due to injury).”Nadal facing rankings slipNadal, who will be favourite to win a 12th French Open crown at Roland Garros, has plenty of ranking points on the line before heading to Paris, with titles to defend in Barcelona and Rome.A slip outside the top two could set up a potential meeting with old rival Novak Djokovic, winner of the last three Grand Slam tournaments, before the final.The ‘king of clay’ will have to bounce back quickly next week to allay fears he is now vulnerable on the red dirt.“I played one of my worst matches on clay in 14 years,” he said.“It’s difficult to find any positives — I deserved to lose.”The Spanish great is yet to win an ATP title this season. The last year he reached May without a tournament victory was in 2004.Fognini will face unheralded Serbian Dusan Lajovic in Sunday’s final — the first time since 2004 that neither Nadal, Djokovic nor Roger Federer have made it to the last day in the Principality. Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess View commentslast_img read more

READ MORE
Kabuliwala comes calling

Kabuliwala comes calling

first_imgNobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s timeless story Kabuliwala resonates perfectly with the Afghan community living in India. And capturing these connections is an ongoing photo exhibition in the capital that traces the life of Afghans living in Kolkata.Documenting the lives of around 5,000 Afghan families living in Kolkata in the exhibition From Kabul to Kolkata: Of Belonging, Memories and Identity two journalists embarked on a three-year journey to tell the story of a century of social transformation within the community.  It opened Saturday at Siddhartha Hall and is on till April 13. Moska Najib and Nazes Afroz have captured the stories of this secluded and little-known settlement in the present time through photographs. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’“Being away from my homeland, I have been always drawn to the themes of identity and new belonging. This inspired me to photograph one of the oldest settled Afghan communities in India in modern times,” said Najib, an Afghan who has lived in India for most of her life. Najib hopes that the photographs on display will allow viewers to experience the problems of preserving an identity and rebuilding a home in a new space. “I wanted to explore how the community has held onto its culture and identity through the 100 years. And by understanding their ways of connection, I, too, wanted to connect with my own country – Afghanistan,” she added. Until a few decades ago, real Kabuliwalas were a common sight on the streets of Kolkata, as in most cities of north and central India; today stereotypes and standard attributes have formed an ambiguous image of these people. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix“Kolkata had amazing diversity and it had made me what I am today. But for the last few decades I felt that this diversity was fading fast, which was disturbing me. So by doing this project, I had an opportunity to capture at least one slice of the diversity of this city and in a way it is a tribute,” Afroz, a journalist from Kolkata said. The series will connect viewers to the themes of human bonding and touch on the issues of loss of identity and a new sense of belonging.last_img read more

READ MORE