“Hanging around, nothing to do but frown, Rainy days and Mondays always get me down.” Karen Carpenter sang about this deadly combination and it’s effect on her emotions. Now, Matt and Erin pile on with a list of insect pests that are active in the state of Iowa. Thankfully, it is not all bad news as we review the biology and pest status of spider mites, soybean aphids and a mix of caterpillar species. We discuss how the weather can help determine if a spider mite outbreak is likely and some tips for dealing with one if it occurs. Matt reveals an upcoming gig in which he will speak at a “Conservation Biological Control Short Course” hosted by the Xerces Society for invertebrate conservation. This all-day event is on 21 August at the ISU Field Extension Education Lab. To learn more visit the website: http://conta.cc/1g9yZqI. Email us your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
In this episode, Matt and Erin transition from providing weekly field crop pest updates to other topics of interest. They discuss the new assessment form provided by the Xerces Society to help farmers understand the value of beneficial insect conservation. Find the form here: http://www.xerces.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/HAG_BeneficialInsects_June2015_web.pdf
Today, Matt talks about a "farminar" with PFI (Practical Farmers of Iowa) he recently recorded. It was about neonic seed treatments in soybean. Watch the archived version here: http://practicalfarmers.org/farmer-knowledge/farminar-archive/neonicotinoid-seed-treatments-are-they-necessary/. Then Erin mentioned Pollinator Fest this summer is happening on Saturday, June 25 in Ames. But the majority of the time was spent interviewing an incoming post-doc, Matt Kaiser. He will start in Matt's lab this summer and work on a new parasitoid wasp that attacks soybean aphid. He reviews wasp biology and talks about how this new tool can help suppress soybean aphids in Iowa.