Friday, December 24, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Monday, December 20, 2010
Friday, December 17, 2010
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
By Les Mehrhoff, Chief Botanical Officer, Invasive Plant Control
T’was the night before Christmas, when all through the habitat
Not an organism was locomoting, not even a nonindigenous Mus musculus.
The posterior appendage covers were hung by the chimney by care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there.
The F1 generation were nestled all snug in their hibernacula,
While visions of monosaccharide pruni danced through their cephalia.
And mamma in her kerchief and I in my cephalial cover,
Had just settled our crania for a long winter’s hibernation.
When out on the hoped-for monoculture of non-native Poa pratensis there arose such a clatter,
I locomoted from my bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I locomoted like a flash,
Tore open the shutter and threw up the sash.
The moon on the mammary of new-fallen frozen precipitation
Gave a luster of mid-day to objects below;
When what to my wondering ocular organs should appear,
But a miniature sleigh and eight tiny Rangifera tarandi,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than Haliaeetus leucocephali his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:
“Now Dasher! now, Dancer! now Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on Cupid! on Donner and Blitzen!
To the top of the Porch! To the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”
As desiccated photosynthetic organs that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleighful of toys, and St. Nicholas too.
And then in a scintilla, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little ungula.
As I drew in my cephalium and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in mammalian epidermal covering from his cephalium to his pedis.
And his clothes were all tarnished with the products of incomplete combustion.
A bundle of toys he had slung on his dorsal surface,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
His ocular organs, how they twinkled! His dimples, how merry!
His mela were like the overbred flowers of some cultivar of the genus Rosa, his naris like the fruit of the non-native Prunus avium!
His droll little stoma was drawn up like a bow,
And the pubescence on his antherion was as white as the frozen precipitation.
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his dens,
And the smoke, it encircled his cephalium like a circular arrangement of gymnosperm
branches with Ilex opaca and Phoradendron leucarpum.
He had a broad protome, and a little round abdomen,
That shook when he laughed, like a bowl full of gelatin.
He was chubby and gibbous—a right jolly old elf—
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself.
A wink of his ocular organ, and a twist of his cephalium,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the posterior appendage covers; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his digit aside of his naris,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose.
He sprang to his sleigh, to the team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew, like the pappus of the highly invasive Cirsium arvense,
But I heard him exclaim, e’re he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Press Release from Georgia Department of Agriculture
Two additional colonies of Africanized bees have been found in Georgia near the area where a man died from an attack. The colonies were destroyed immediately. Entomological tests confirmed that Africanized honeybees were responsible for the death the elderly Dougherty County man in October. It was the first record of the strain in Georgia.
Since then, the Georgia Department of Agriculture has been monitoring bee swarms, trapping and testing suspect bees. Testing of more than 90 samples identified two more colonies in the southern half of the state near the first confirmed colony.
“It is unclear how Africanized honeybees arrived in Dougherty County,” said Agriculture Commissioner Tommy Irvin. “The bees could have come from almost anywhere.”
Africanized bee swarms are occasionally found on cargo ships coming from South or Central America. A container from one of these ships could have been transported via rail or truck from almost any seaport. Some beekeepers from other states winter their bees in Georgia. Some commercial beekeepers that produce honey or pollinate crops move their bees to California, Florida, Texas and other states where Africanized honeybees are established. Finally, a beekeeper in the area could have purchased bees or queens that had African genes from a commercial beekeeper in another state.
“The important thing to keep in mind,” says Irvin, “is that other states and countries have learned to live with Africanized honeybees. “We need to move beyond the hype of ‘killer bees’. Just as we have learned to live with fire ants, we will learn to take certain precautions when in areas where Africanized bees may be established.”
Both the Georgia Department of Agriculture and the University of Georgia stress that beekeepers are the best defense Georgians have against Africanized honeybees. Without responsible beekeepers managing hives in the area, the density of docile European bees will decrease, leaving that area open to infestation by Africanized bees.
For more information on Africanized bees click here.
To view the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service publication on Africanized honeybees, click here.
Monday, December 13, 2010
This plant grows well in forested bottomlands and poses a severe threat to forested ecosystems. It can be found growing in ditches, fencerows, and upland forests. Japanese Chaff Flower is a perennial and can form dense populations out competing native flora. The seeds are easily transported sticking to clothing or fur. It resembles the native plant, American lopseed (Phryma leptostachya). Click here to see the Species Alert pdf developed by Christopher Evans of the River to River Cooperative Weed Management Area. If you see this plant, take a picture of it and report the siting to EDDMapS.
Friday, December 10, 2010
Location: University of Georgia, Tifton, Georgia USA
Appointment: Grant-funded full-time position (salary $40,577 with benefits). The position is currently funded for one year with renewal contingent upon availability of continuing grant funds and satisfactory progress of employee.
Available: Closing date for receipt of applications is January 12, 2011. Position could be available as early as February 14, 2011.
Position Description: This position will be the EDDMapS Data Coordinator for the Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health (http://www.bugwood.org/) at the University of Georgia-Tifton Campus. EDDMapS (http://www.eddmaps.org/) is a web-based early detection, distribution mapping and information system for invasive species. EDDMapS is a national platform used and funded by various Federal agencies and non-profit organizations. This position requires someone with excellent biological, computer/technical and communication skills. They will work closely with the Center's Technology Director and Invasive Species Coordinator to enhance and expand EDDMapS and related Center invasive species programs. They will be responsible for identifying and integrating state, regional and national datasets into EDDMapS and identifying gaps in existing distribution data. They will also develop protocols and standards for data included in EDDMapS and work with collaborators to share data between systems. This position will work with the Center Directors to write reports, grants and cooperative agreements to further expand and maintain EDDMapS and other Center programs.
They will be required to develop and deliver presentations to funding agencies and professional organizations at state, regional, and national levels. Some out-of-town and overnight travel will be required.
Qualifications: Completion of a Master's degree OR completion of a Bachelor's degree and several years of experience in Forestry, Natural Resources, Environmental Sciences, Ecology, Weed Science, Botany, Agriculture, Biology or related field. Experience with Invasive Plant Management, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and/or Database Management Systems is preferred. Candidates must have good communication skills, both written and verbal, as well as the ability to work independently and with others.
Location: The University of Georgia Tifton Campus, Tifton, GA. The campus provides agricultural and environmental research, outreach and instruction with almost 100 UGA scientists working with USDA Agricultural Research Service researchers. Tifton is listed as one of the "100 Best Small Towns in America". Tifton is located 180 miles south of Atlanta and has a county population of 40,000.
Applications: Interested persons must complete official online University application at: http://www.ugajobsearch.com/applicants/Central?quickFind=57006
Please direct any and all questions to: Chuck Bargeron
Technology Director and Public Service Assistant Center for Invasive Species & Ecosystem Health University of Georgia P.O. Box 748
4601 Research Way Room 113
Tifton, GA 31793 USA
Phone (229) 386-3298
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Monday, December 6, 2010
Native to Asia, B. invadens is also known to occur in other parts of Africa. It is a pest of Citrus spp. (citrus), Solanum lycopersicum (tomato), Mangifera indica (mango), Psidium guajava (guava), Musa spp. (banana), and Annona spp. (annona). Bactrocera invadens is not known to occur in the United States. The genus Bactrocera is listed as reportable in the PEST ID database (queried 12/1/10).