Master Gardeners of Ventura County
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Master Gardeners of Ventura County

Bug Blog

Congrats, Brendon Boudinot, Recipient of ESA's Snodgrass Memorial Research Award

Ant specialist Brendon Boudinot searching for ants at the Southwest Research Station in Chiricahua Mountains near Portal, Arizona. (Photo by Roberto Keller, National Museum of Natural History and Science, Portugal)

Congratulations to UC Davis alumnus and ant morphologist Brendon Boudinot recipient of the coveted Robert E. Snodgrass Memorial Research Award from the Entomological Society of America (ESA). Well done! The award,...

Ant specialist Brendon Boudinot searching for ants at the Southwest Research Station in Chiricahua Mountains near Portal, Arizona. (Photo by Roberto Keller, National Museum of Natural History and Science, Portugal)
Ant specialist Brendon Boudinot searching for ants at the Southwest Research Station in Chiricahua Mountains near Portal, Arizona. (Photo by Roberto Keller, National Museum of Natural History and Science, Portugal)

Ant specialist Brendon Boudinot searching for ants at the Southwest Research Station in Chiricahua Mountains near Portal, Arizona. (Photo by Roberto Keller, National Museum of Natural History and Science, Portugal)

Posted on Friday, August 7, 2020 at 3:08 PM
Focus Area Tags: Economic Development, Environment, Innovation, Natural Resources

What You Need to Know About That Invasive Giant Hornet

This is a female Vespa mandarinia japonica by Yasunori Koide. (Creative Commons photo)

It's good to see Washington State University Extension's newly published, updated fact sheet on the Asian giant hornet, Vespa mandarinia. You can view or download it here for free. Remember the massive media frenzy earlier this year when "the...

This is a female Vespa mandarinia japonica by Yasunori Koide. (Creative Commons photo)
This is a female Vespa mandarinia japonica by Yasunori Koide. (Creative Commons photo)

This is a female Vespa mandarinia japonica by Yasunori Koide. (Creative Commons photo)

Screen shot of the life cycle that appears in the WSU Extension fact sheet on the Asian giant hornet, Vespa mandarinia. (Courtesy of WSU)
Screen shot of the life cycle that appears in the WSU Extension fact sheet on the Asian giant hornet, Vespa mandarinia. (Courtesy of WSU)

Screen shot of the life cycle that appears in the WSU Extension fact sheet on the Asian giant hornet, Vespa mandarinia. (Courtesy of WSU)

Posted on Thursday, August 6, 2020 at 2:13 PM
Focus Area Tags: Agriculture, Economic Development, Environment, Health, Innovation, Pest Management

A Monarch Paradise in July

A monarch caterpillar molting. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Monarchs, bless their little hearts, souls and wings, deposited 16 eggs on our milkweed plants in July.  Being quite obliging and considerate, we like to give the monarchs, Danaus plexippus, in our Vacaville pollinator garden a...

A monarch caterpillar molting. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A monarch caterpillar molting. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A monarch caterpillar molting. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A monarch caterpillar j'ing; soon it will be a chrysalis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A monarch caterpillar j'ing; soon it will be a chrysalis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A monarch caterpillar j'ing; soon it will be a chrysalis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

From left, a chrysalis about to release a monarch; an empty chrysalis or empty pupal exoskeleton, exuvia; a chrysalis; and an newly eclosed adult monarch. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
From left, a chrysalis about to release a monarch; an empty chrysalis or empty pupal exoskeleton, exuvia; a chrysalis; and an newly eclosed adult monarch. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

From left, a chrysalis about to release a monarch; an empty chrysalis or empty pupal exoskeleton, exuvia; a chrysalis; and an newly eclosed adult monarch. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A newly eclosed female monarch on a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A newly eclosed female monarch on a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A newly eclosed female monarch on a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A female monarch nectaring on a tropical milkweed. This milkweed yielded five caterpillars. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A female monarch nectaring on a tropical milkweed. This milkweed yielded five caterpillars. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A female monarch nectaring on a tropical milkweed. This milkweed yielded five caterpillars. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Wednesday, August 5, 2020 at 3:04 PM
Focus Area Tags: Environment, Food, Natural Resources, Pest Management, Yard & Garden

Portraits of The Predator and the Prey

Occupied! A praying mantis, a female Stagmomantis limbata occupies a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia rotundifolia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Heads will not roll.  The Hunger Games will not begin.  Preying does not always work.  It's Aug. 2, 2020 and a praying mantis decides to occupy a specially stunning Mexican sunflower. Specifically, it's a female Stagmomantis limbata...

Occupied! A praying mantis, a female Stagmomantis limbata occupies a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia rotundifolia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Occupied! A praying mantis, a female Stagmomantis limbata occupies a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia rotundifolia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Occupied! A praying mantis, a female Stagmomantis limbata occupies a Mexican sunflower, Tithonia rotundifolia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Double Occupancy: The praying mantis and honey bee share the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Double Occupancy: The praying mantis and honey bee share the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Double Occupancy: The praying mantis and honey bee share the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The Stare: The praying mantis, a carnivore, stares at the honey bee, a vegetarian. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
The Stare: The praying mantis, a carnivore, stares at the honey bee, a vegetarian. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The Stare: The praying mantis, a carnivore, stares at the honey bee, a vegetarian. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Oh, Yours? The honey bee prepares to leave the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Oh, Yours? The honey bee prepares to leave the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Oh, Yours? The honey bee prepares to leave the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Lone Occupancy! The praying mantis again owns the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Lone Occupancy! The praying mantis again owns the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Lone Occupancy! The praying mantis again owns the Mexican sunflower. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Tuesday, August 4, 2020 at 5:17 PM
Focus Area Tags: Environment, Food, Natural Resources, Yard & Garden

This Is Not Our Planet. Whose Planet Is It?

A honey bee encounters a lady beetle, aka ladybug, on mustard. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Mention "beetles," and most folks think of that iconic English rock band from Liverpool. You know, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr? But to entomologists, "The Beatles," means "The Beetles."  You know, the ones with six...

A honey bee encounters a lady beetle, aka ladybug, on mustard. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A honey bee encounters a lady beetle, aka ladybug, on mustard. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A honey bee encounters a lady beetle, aka ladybug, on mustard. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A cellar spider catches and wraps a lady beetle, aka ladybug. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A cellar spider catches and wraps a lady beetle, aka ladybug. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A cellar spider catches and wraps a lady beetle, aka ladybug. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A Gulf Fritillary eyes a blister beetle on a Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A Gulf Fritillary eyes a blister beetle on a Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A Gulf Fritillary eyes a blister beetle on a Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Monday, August 3, 2020 at 2:28 PM
Focus Area Tags: Agriculture, Economic Development, Environment, Innovation, Natural Resources, Yard & Garden

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