Carey's public service led to much-needed in-depth discussions and greater understanding of these two agricultural pests; saved California millions in cancelled ineffective programs; and focused national and worldwide attention on how to deal with invasive pests.
An internationally recognized leader and distinguished scholar in invasion biology spanning three decades, Carey launched an informed, concerted and widespread effort to reveal the science about the invaders that threaten California's $43.5 billion agricultural industry. His well-documented research in basic and applied aspects of invasion biology shows that these pests are established and cannot be eradicated. They continue to spread, despite more than 30 years of intervention and nearly 300 state-sponsored eradication programs.
Highly honored by his peers, Carey received the 2014 C. W. Woodworth Award, the highest award given by the Pacific Branch of ESA, and a 2014 Academic Senate Undergraduate Teaching Award. He was selected a plenary speaker for ICE 2016, the XXV International Congress of Entomology, to meet Sept. 25-30, 2016 in Orlando, Fla.
His past public service includes chair of the University of California Systemwide Committee on Research Policy; member of the systemwide UC Academic Council; and vice chair of his department. He presently serves as the associate editor of three journals: Genus, Aging Cell, and Demographic Research.
Some comments about his work:
- Vice Provost and Dean Robert E. Page Jr. of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Arizona State University, describes Dr. Carey as “one of the most active, intelligent, diligent, curious, attentive, creative and passionate scientists not only on the UC Davis campus, but nationally and globally.”
- Nan Wishner of the California Environmental Health Initiative, says “Jim provided not only his own scientific expertise but supported and assisted us in researching relevant scientific information on the behavior of and actual threat posed by the apple moth and other pests, the potential strategies for addressing pests, and the fundamental scientific principles underlying choices of policies and practices.” She describes him as “a tireless advocate for the involvement and engagement of the public affected by agency pest management decisions.”
- Sandra Ross, executive director of Health & Habitat, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to developing, implementing and promoting a holistic approach to life, health, and the environment, says that Carey used his expertise to show that these pest eradication programs did not work, and provided accurate information so informed decisions could be made. “He is especially good at interacting with the lay public, and explaining the situation in terms they can understand. He does this even if his critique of a program may earn him the displeasure of an agency, and could jeopardize future funding for one of his projects.”
UC Berkeley professor Nick Mills will head to UC Davis on Wednesday, Feb. 20 to speak on just that: "The Light Brown Apple Moth--Not a Typical Invader."
The seminar, hosted by the UC Davis Department of Entomology, is set from 12:10 to 1 p.m. in Room 1022 of the Life Sciences Addition, corner of Hutchison and Kleiber Hall drives.
Mills, with the UC Berkeley Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, says "exotic insect pests typically become invasive by building populations and spreading through a new geographic region in the absence of constraints from co-evolved natural enemies. While it is well known that environments can differ substantially in their resistance to invasions of alien species little is known of the factors responsible for this variation."
The light brown apple moth, aka LBAM, has caused quite a stir since its detection in California in 2006. That's when emeritus professor Jerry Powell of UC Berkeley discovered the invader in his back yard in Berkeley.
As a leafrolling caterpillar, LBAM loves just about everything from A to Z: apple, apricot, beans, caneberries (blackberry, blueberry, boysenberry, raspberry), cabbage, camellia, chrysanthemum, citrus, clover, cole crops, eucalyptus, jasmine, kiwifruit, peach, pear, persimmon, plantain, pumpkin, strawberry, tomato, rose and zea mays (corn).
Mills says that since its discovery in California, LBAM "has accumulated a rich set of resident parasitoid species comparable to that seen in its native Australia. However, in contrast to the low levels of parasitism that invasive hosts typically experience from resident parasitoids, parasitism levels for light brown apple moth are very high."
He will discuss, among other things, "the importance of resident parasitoids as barriers to the invasions of light brown apple moth in California."
Plans are to record the seminar for later posting on UCTV. Hosting the seminar is entomologist Mary Louise Flint of the Department of Entomology/UC Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program.
James R. Carey is used to dissent.
The entomology professor at the University of California, Davis, fervently believes that the Mediterranean fruit fly and light brown apple moth, two exotic and invasive pests, have long been established in California and cannot be eradicated.
Trying to eradicate them, he says, is like "throwing money down a rathole."
Check out the current (Jan. 8th) edition of Science Magazine and read the three-page NewsFocus piece headlined "From Medfly to Moth: Raising a Buzz of Dissent."
This is sure to garner a plethora of comments, concern and criticism. This is about as high-profile as it gets in the scientific community. And this is not the message that the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) is trying to get across. (See CDFA's Web site on the light brown apple moth).
Carey, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, just completed a term as the chair of the UC Systemwide Academic Senate University Committee on Research Policy. He also directs a federally funded program on lifespan and aging; the program just received a $3.4 million grant renewal from the National Institute on Aging.
"James Carey is at it again," began writer Ingfei Chen of Santa Cruz. "In the early 1990s, as a scientific adviser in California's unpopular pesticide-spraying war against the Mediterranean fruit fly, the entomologist vocally charged that the state's program was fundamentally flawed. Bucking conventional wisdom, Carey claimed that the Medfly was already established, defying the eradication attempt."
Fast forward to February 2007 and the discovery in California (Bay Area) of a new invasive pest, the light brown apple moth, a native of Australia.
Aerial spraying of a pheromone resulted in a "red-hot-public ruckus, forcing the state to shift to a plan to release zillions of sterile moths...And once again, Carey has surfaced as a relentless voice of dissent," Chen wrote.
Carey insists it can't be eradicated, that it's here to stay and we ought to focus on pest management, not eradication.
What's next? Michael Parrella, professor and chair of the Department of Entomology wants to organize a spring conference "to reexamine the invasive species-policy paradigm from to bottom," Chen wrote.
"The goal," she wrote, "is an open dialogue with major stakeholders," including the U.S. Department of Agriculture and CDFA.
Carey told us today that Parrella plans to meet with him and a group of other entomologists next week to discuss the proposed workshop.
"It would be nice to think we could sit down and discuss things," Parrella told Chen in the Science Magazine article. "It's not us versus them."
Remember the ravenous light brown apple moth (LBAM) and all the controversy?
The invasive agricultural pest, from Down Under, soars high on the agenda at the Northern California Entomology Society’s meeting on Thursday, Nov. 5 in Concord. Also on the agenda: honey bee regulatory research.
The meeting, open to the public, will be held from 9:15 to 2:30 p.m. in the Contra Costa Mosquito and Vector Control District office, 155 Mason Circle, Concord.
Extension Apiculturist Eric Mussen of the UC Davis Department of Entomology faculty and secretary-treasurer of the society, said attendance at the meeting is free. The only fee is the $15 catered lunch.
In addition to LBAM and other exotic invasive pests, the meeting will include a talk on “Honey Bee Regulatory Research” by Mike Beevers of California Agriculture Research, Fresno.
“Mike is involved with research on the effects of pesticides on honey bees,” Mussen said. "Consideration of honey bees always has been important, but colony collapse disorder (CCD) has brought extreme attention to the possible consequences of bees becoming contaminated with insecticide residues, especially the ‘sublethal effects.’”
The meeting begins at 9:15 a.m. with registration and coffee.
9:30 a.m.: “Biological Control Agents for Light Brown Apple Moth,” Nick Mills of UC Berkeley
10:15 a.m.: “New Exotic Pests and Invasives of Regulatory Significance in California,” Kevin Hoffman, Plant Diagnostic Center, California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA)
11 a.m. “Responding to New California State Pests: Control Programs and Pesticide Products,” by Duane Schnabel, CDFA Pest Detection and Emergency Projects
11:45 a.m.: Annual business meeting, with election of new president
12 Noon: Catered lunch by Kinder’s Custom Meats ($15 per person, reservations required with Eric Mussen)
1:15: “Update on Light Brown Apple Moth Eradication Program,” by Laura Irons of CDFA’s Light Brown Apple Moth Program
2 p.m.: “Honey Bee Regulatory Research” by Mike Beevers, California Agriculture, Fresno
Those planning to attend should contact Mussen at (530) 752-0472 or e-mail him at email@example.com. For those needing continuing education hours in Laws and Regulations, California Department of Pesticide Regulation, this meeting will satisfy three hours, he said.
The Nor Cal society membership is comprised of university faculty, researchers, pest abatement professionals, students and other interested persons. Susan Sawyer of the Pest Detection/Emergency Projects, CDFA, has served as president for the last two years.
The society meets the first Thursday in February; the first Thursday in May and the first Thursday in November. Membership dues are $10 year.
Most entomologists I know maintain a keen sense of humor.
They have to, or the insects (or the people concerned about them) will drive them buggy!
At the Northern California Entomology Society meeting in
He talked about the release of several parasitoids, including Trichogramma sp., an egg parasitoid; Meteorus trachynotus, a larval parasitoid; and Enytus eureka, a larval parasitoid.
These are the critters that can kill the light brown apple moth. The pest, known as LBAM or the "eat-everything moth," loves the Califonria climate.
Roltsch talked about biocontrol test sites in the
Roltsch, a CDFA senior environmental research scientist who received his doctorate in entomology from
And now LBAM.
LBAM lays about 60 eggs at a time, sometimes up to 100. It’s a native of
Its hosts include crops (grape vines, pome, stone fruit and citrus), shrubs (coral pea, tea tree, broom and Asteracae, the sunflower family) and weeds (capeweed, plantain and dock).
Roltsch talked about how much LBAM loves the Australian tea tree (Leptospermum laevigatium); manzanita, bottle brush, and other plants.
But wait, he didn't say anything about my favorite plant, the New Zealand tea tree, Leptospermum scoparium keatleyi. A sea captain named Edward John "Ted" Keatley (probably one of my relatives) discovered the cultivar in the early 1900s in
I'm sure LBAM loves that plant, too, just as it loves everything else. It's not a picky eater.
During the question and answer period, a Contra Costa County resident asked Roltsch: “How did LBAM know to settle in three counties that do not allow aerial spraying:
That question drew one of the biggest laughs of the day.
Ol' LBAM is a clever cuss. It not only eats everything but it's trained in survival skills.
I do know this: Capt. Keatley had nothing to do with transporting LBAM here.