This half pod is just Matt giving a few updates, a "thank you" to the Iowa Honey Producers Association and preparation for a Fun Insect Trivia (FIT) question for next week.
Erin is out in the field today. She and I will return next week, Tuesday, to discuss what she is seeing in the field and the answer to the FIT.
In the meantime, Matt wraps up the week of 12-16 July. One big observation is the occurence of soybean aphids at really low populations. One encouraging sign is the co-occurence of insect predators and mummies. The mummies are evidence that aphids have been parasitized by wasps. Combined, these predators and parasitoid wasps may prevent outbreaks later in the summer.
Matt gives a big thank you to the Iowa Honey Producers Association for the invite to speak at their field day last weekend. Ebert honey was the host, providing a great location to share our research on prairie strips. The beekeepers were excited to learn more about this practice and how these patches could help improve honey bee productivity.
Finally- Note the blurry picture below. This picture was taken by a colleague working at a central Iowa research farm. Next week, I'll ask Erin what she thinks it is and what impact, if any, it could have on crops in Iowa.
(Matt failed to add it in the original submission. Its added below.)