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Latest Agricultural Research Service Stories

Controlling The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, USDA's Top-ranked Invasive Insect
2013-01-07 12:18:56

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) First detected in the United States a decade ago, the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) is now in at least 39 states, is wreaking havoc in homes and gardens, and is a major economic threat to orchard fruits, garden vegetables and row crops. It's no wonder the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) ranks this pest as its top "invasive insect of interest." But help may be on the way: USDA scientists at the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Invasive...

2012-12-14 15:20:11

Peach growers in California may soon have better tools for saving water because of work by U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists in Parlier, Calif. Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist Dong Wang is evaluating whether infrared sensors and thermal technology can help peach growers decide precisely when to irrigate in California's San Joaquin Valley. ARS is USDA's principal intramural scientific research agency, and the research supports the USDA priority of promoting...

Dressing U.S. Troops To Protect Against Attacks From Insects
2012-12-03 16:48:39

U.S. Department of Agriculture Outfitting soldiers with clothing that effectively repels or kills insects is one of the strategies U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists are using to help protect U.S. military personnel deployed overseas against disease-transmitting mosquitoes and sand flies. As part of the Deployed War-Fighter Protection Research Program, scientists at the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Center for Medical, Agricultural, and Veterinary Entomology (CMAVE)...

Sources Of E. Coli Not Just From Animal Production Facilities
2012-11-30 10:53:26

U.S. Department of Agriculture U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists have identified sources of Escherichia coli bacteria that could help restore the reputation of local livestock. Studies by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist Mark Ibekwe suggest that in some parts of California, pathogens in local waterways are more often carried there via runoff from urban areas, not from animal production facilities. ARS is USDA's chief intramural scientific research agency, and...

Using A Growth Regulator To Kill Flies Before They Mature
2012-11-26 14:19:23

U.S. Department of Agriculture An insect growth regulator is one of the latest technologies U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists are adding to their arsenal to help fight house flies that spread bacteria to food. Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists at the agency's Center for Medical, Agricultural, and Veterinary Entomology in Gainesville, Fla., are using an insect growth regulator called pyriproxyfen to kill house flies that spread bacteria that can cause diarrhea...

Conserving Water Without Hurting The Peach Production
2012-11-21 14:46:28

U.S. Department of Agriculture U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists are helping peach growers make the most of dwindling water supplies in California's San Joaquin Valley. Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist James E. Ayars at the San Joaquin Valley Agricultural Sciences Center in Parlier, Calif., has found a way to reduce the amount of water given post-harvest to early-season peaches so that the reduction has a minimal effect on yield and fruit quality. ARS is...

Using Knowledge And Proven Insecticides To Bait Mosquitoes
2012-11-13 17:42:23

U.S. Department of Agriculture While one team of U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists is testing the effectiveness of pesticides against mosquitoes, another group is learning how repellents work. At the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology (CMAVE) in Gainesville, Fla., entomologist Sandra Allan is using toxic sugar-based baits to lure and kill mosquitoes. Allan and her CMAVE cooperators are evaluating insecticides and...

Insect-repelling Compounds Discovered In Jatropha
2012-11-05 13:54:00

U.S. Department of Agriculture A tip about a folk remedy plant used in India and Africa to ward off bugs has led to the discovery of insect-repelling compounds. U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists have identified components of Jatropha curcas seed oil that are responsible for mosquito repellency. Researchers at the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Natural Products Utilization Research Unit (NPURU) in Oxford, Miss., often find effective plant-derived compounds to deter...

One Of America's Most Popular Vegetables Improved
2012-10-25 09:49:14

Potatoes with higher levels of beneficial carotenoids are the result of U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) studies to improve one of America's most popular vegetables. Scientists with USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) bred yellow potatoes with carotenoid levels that are two to three times higher than those of the popular Yukon Gold yellow-fleshed potato variety. ARS plant geneticist Kathy Haynes and nutritionist Beverly Clevidence did the research at the agency's Henry A....

Gene Suppression Can Lower Cold-induced Sweetening In Potatoes
2012-10-15 14:13:12

Preventing activity of a key enzyme in potatoes could help boost potato quality by putting an end to cold-induced sweetening, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists. Cold-induced sweetening, which occurs when potatoes are put in long-term cold storage, causes flavor changes and unwanted dark colors in fried and roasted potatoes. But long-term cold storage is necessary to maintain an adequate supply of potatoes throughout the year. Agricultural Research Service...


Word of the Day
callithump
  • A somewhat riotous parade, accompanied with the blowing of tin horns, and other discordant noises; also, a burlesque serenade; a charivari.
'Callithump' is a back-formation of 'callithumpian,' a 'fanciful formation' according to the Oxford English Dictionary. However, the English Dialect Dictionary, says 'Gallithumpians' is a Dorset and Devon word from the 1790s that refers to 'a society of radical social reformers' or 'noisy disturbers of elections and meetings.'
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