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Entomology in the News!

Japanese Beetles now showing up in Minn. gardens

[6/26/12] Minnesota experiencing increasing numbers of Japanese beetles. Jeff Hahn via KSTP News

In Defense of Genetically Modified Crops

[6/19/12] Genetically modified Bt crops get a pretty bad rap. The pest-killing Bacillus thuringiensis (bt) bacteria protein these plants are bioengineered to make has been accused of harming monarch butterflies, honey bees, rats, and showing up in the blood of pregnant women. "Maintainining the biological control agents we already have is one of the cornerstones of integrated pest management." says William Hutchison, an entomologist at the University of Minnesota. Mother Jones

Entomology Graduate Students receive several awards at the 67th Annual NCB-ESA Meeting, 2012

[6/11/12] Four UofM Entomology graduate students, and a newly minted PhD won a variety of awards at the 67th Annual Meeting of the NCB-ESA, June 3-6, in Lincoln Nebraska. Read more.

Taking a Bite out of Summer

[6/2/12 ]You can put down the swatter. According to local bug experts, bugs got about a three-week jump on summer, but shouldn't produce a bumper crop of annoyance. "How many bugs we see in the spring is a lot more complicated than a mild winter," said Jeff Hahn, an extension entomologist at the University of Minnesota. Star Tribune

The Splendid Table and honey bees

[5/21/12] This week on Splendid Table, Lynne stepped out of the studio and into the world of honey bees with University of Minnesota researcher, Marla Spivak. Splendid Table (National Public Radio)

Hodson Alumni Award and Grad Student Recognition

[5/14/12] Dr. Aziz Lagnaoui was presented with the Hodson Alumni Award at the Hodson Alumni and Grad Student Recognition Event on Monday, May 14, 2012. (Ph.D 1991, M.S. 1990)

The plight of the bees

[4/25/12] Bees are a vital part of our ecosystem, but they're declining at alarming rates. It's called colony collapse and it affects humans more than you may think… Marla Spivak, director of the Bee Lab at the University of Minnesota, will join the discussion.  Minnesota Public Radio Daily Circuit

After slow start, beekeeping permits jump in Minneapolis

[4/25/12] The number of requests for beekeeping permits is spiking in Minneapolis, nearly two years after it was legalized… Others cities have also acted in recent years, said Gary Reuter, who works for the University of Minnesota's entomology department. Minnesota Public Radio Daily Circuit

Ticks are out & Lyme Disease often under-diagnosed

ENTO.Tick.Munderloh[4/18/12] Now that the area ticks call home is expanding, the risk of getting Lyme disease isn't limited to those who live up north -- and the FOX 9 Investigators found out that means the dangerous illness is under-diagnosed because the symptoms can mimic other illnesses and tests can be inconclusive.  Dr. Uli Munderloh, Dept. of Entomology, explains...

What good do ticks do?

[4/16/12] The warm spring has meant an early visit from Minnesota’s blood-sucking, disease-carrying insect: the tick…“I would say we could probably come up with some things,” said University of Minnesota Extension entomologist Jeff Hahn. WCCO-TV

Plotting a New Landscape

"...We’re trying to figure out if biofuel crops can be helpful with biocontrol of soybean aphids, which are a major problem for soybean producers,” says George Heimpel, a professor in the Department of Entomology, who is a co-investigator on the study.  "We already know that more diverse habitats tend to attract more of the beneficial insects that prey on soybean aphids,” he says. “What’s not clear yet is if there will be enough (insects) to make a difference in biocontrol... See Solutions Magazine

The root of the problem

If survival in nature depends on the ability to adapt, then the corn rootworm must be the fittest bug in the field. Entomologists study why the persistent corn pest may be staging a comeback. Ken Ostlie has been in the fields trying to identify the source of the resistant pests and to help farmers learn how to deal with ailing fields. Solutions Magazine.

The State of Minnesota's trees

After a year of drought, insects, windstorms, and fire, how healthy are Minnesota's urban and recreational forests? Brian Aukema participated in a roundtable discussion about Minnesota's trees. Solutions Magazine.

Pesticide, EPA faulted in bee die-off

Beekeepers from Minnesota and across the country this month asked the federal government for a temporary ban on one of the most widely used pesticides until its effect on bees is clear. "Seventy percent of crops - apples, oranges, zucchini, melons, strawberries - they all need pollinators," said Vera Krischik, an associate professor of entomology at the University of Minnesota who studies the pesticides and bees. "It's a huge issue." StarTribune.

Marla Spivak recognized as distinguished alumna

ENTO.Spivak.RecognitionThe College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Kansas will be holding an awards presentation and reception in appreciation of alumna Marla Spivak. 

Spivak is a MacArthur "Genius" Fellow and Distinguished McKnight Professor and Extension Entomologist in the Department of Entomology at the University of Minnesota. She obtained her Ph.D. from the College at KU under Dr. Orley Taylor in 1989 on the ecology of Africanized honey bees in Costa Rica. From 1989–92 she was a post-doctoral researcher at the Center for Insect Science at the University of Arizona. She was hired as an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota in 1992.

Currently, her research and extension efforts focus on honeybee health, breeding, and behavior, and on the sustainable management of alternative pollinators.

Insect experts issue 'urgent' warning on using biotech seeds

For America's agricultural biotech companies, the corn rootworm is threatening to turn into their worst nightmare..."It raises real questions about how stable this house of cards is," says Ken Ostlie from the University of Minnesota. Read more.

Let's Beat the Bug!

Dr. Stephen Kells will be leading seminars in Rochester, Duluth, and Northwest Minnesota. People who attend the free information sessions will learn how to identify bed bugs, prevent infestations, remove bed bugs, and develop a response program for hotels, hospitals, and social services. Click on a link below to register for a seminar near you!

Rochester, MN: March 28, 2012
Duluth, MN: April 3, 2012
Northwest Minnesota: April 12, 2012
St. Cloud, MN: To be determined.

The high value of short-lived worms

ENTO.Mesce.ParkinsonsTo tell the full story of how his mutant worms may help find better drugs for Parkinson’s disease, The University of Texas at Austin’s Jon Pierce-Shimomura goes back a few decades…“Nature doesn’t like to give up on a good strategy,” says Karen Mesce, a neuroscience and entomology professor at the University of Minnesota. Read more.

Disease-carrying ticks move deeper into Northland

ENTO.Hahn.TickBlacklegged ticks continue to infiltrate the Arrowhead…But that doesn’t necessarily mean this year’s mild winter will produce a bumper crop of the ticks, said Jeff Hahn, an entomologist for the University of Minnesota. Read more.

What is a Research University?

ENT.Emerald.Ash.BorerNew UofM Video on the contributions of students to the research mission, features Entomology Graduate Student, Lindsey Christianson, working on the cold hardiness of the Emerald Ash Borer in Minnesota. Her advisor is Dr. Rob Venette, U.S. Forest Service, and Adjunct Assoc. Faculty member, Dept. of Entomology.

Winter bug may offer climate clues

ENTO.FerringtonDiamesa mendotae, a cold-hardy but delicate insect also known as a midge, may provide a measure of how the state's climate is warming, and what effect that might have. Researchers from the University of Minnesota are working to understand more about the relationship between these unusual freeze-resistant insects and the fish that eat them in streams in the southeastern part of the state. "We're thinking that a changing climate and increasing air temperatures will affect water temperatures, and that could reduce [fish] populations," said entomology professor Len Ferrington, principal investigator on the project. Read more.

What seekers share

CFANS-News-Multimedia-Marla-SpivakMarla Spivak is a world expert on honeybees. Carl Flink is a leading dancer and choreographer. These U of M faculty members work in what seem radically different disciplines. Yet the heart of what drives them—and countless other seekers, whether they're labeled "teachers" or "students"—is remarkably similar. See for yourself.

A higher state of beeing


Renata Borba's journey to honeybee researcher. . Read more.

Pest resurgence casts doubts on benefits of modified corn

The resurgence of a major corn pest has led to a growing debate about the role of genetically modified corn, and cast doubts on the economic and environmental benefits of one of the nation's most popular seed lines. Read more.

Ash Borer-Infested Trees Cut Down Near Summit Ave.

Ento.Grad.HeftyThe Minnesota Department of Agriculture has stepped up its fight against the spread of emerald ash borer in the past year, releasing stingless wasps and setting purple traps to eradicate the invasive insect. Andrea Hefty studies the bothersome bug. Read more.

January 6, 2012

A press release by The Entomological Society of America (ESA), summarizes a paper co-authored by Bill Hutchison and colleagues, refuting a 2010 Greenpeace report, and provides several ecological and agronomic factors that may have influenced the spread of the Western bean cutworm in the U.S. corn belt.

November 11, 2011

A new Soybean Aphid video, featuring Dr. Ian MacRae and IPM Specialist, Bruce Potter via the Minnesota Soybean Growers. 

August 3, 2011

Dr. Uli Munderloh is co-author of an August 3rd article in the New England Journal of Medicine about a new bacterium transmitted by deer/black-footed ticks which was featured in several press releases

July 14, 2011

Elaine Evans (Spivak lab), "Bee spotters join forces" - StarTribune

July 4-6, 2011

Alyssa Anderson (Ph.D. student advised by Len Ferrington) was awarded best student oral presentation for her talk "Strength of combined forces: molecular and morphological methods reveal cryptic diversity and three new species of Nearctic Micropsectra" at the 18th International Symposium on Chironomidae in Trondheim Norway. 

July 1, 2011

Marla Spivak featured at Live-Science

June 14, 2011

Dr. Brian Aukema, McKnight Land Grant Professor and Forest Entomologist was profiled by OVPR's Research News Online (the latest news and information for University Researchers).  The complete profile is on the Research News Online site.

June 7, 2011

Jeff Hahn appeared on Kare11 TV in a segment called The bugs are back!

May 26, 2011

Jeff Hahn was featured on MPR's Midmorning show - A bug's life... and death

April 13, 2011

Research on bee health, done by Ph.D. student Judy Wu while she was at Washington State University, is featured in the Western Farm Newsletter.  The paper referenced in the article is available online: "Sub-Lethal Effects of Pesticide Residues in Brood Comb on Worker Honey Bee (Apis mellifera) Development and Longevity"

April 11, 2011

Extension Entomologist, Jeff Hahn was featured on KSTP-TV, Channel 5, discussing the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, in MN

March 25, 2011

Iowa Public Radio recently did a story featuring Vera Krischik and her lab's study of how neonic pesticides affect bees. The story has been posted on the Harvest Public Media web site: The studied life of bees: Assessing the sting of neonic pesticides and includes pictures, video and a link to the Iowa Public Radio audio story.

Minnesota Public Radio featured the Insect Museum in their Art Hounds podcast

November 2, 2010

Alumnus Robert Suranyi is in the CFANS Alumni Spotlight.  See our alumni & friends section for a link.

October 28, 2010

Entomology will be featured on the big screen in TCF stadium!  This week's "Academic Moment" features bed bugs, along with Dr. Stephen Kells and his lab.  If you aren't going to the game, you can watch a preview of the video online.  

October 8, 2010

A multi-state, multi-disciplinary team led by William Hutchison, reports that Bt corn provides significant economic benefits, even to neighboring farmers who grew non-transgenic varieties of corn.  More details and links on our news and events



Event Photographs

2010 Fall Welcome

2010 Grad Student Recognition Day & Hodson Alumni Award Lecture

Annual Honey House 
Halloween Party Photos (2009)