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Posts Tagged: January 2016

Deadline to nominate UCCE academics for service awards is Feb. 15

Nominations are being accepted for the 2016 ANR Distinguished Service Awards, which are sponsored by UC Agriculture and Natural Resources and Academic Assembly Council.

Take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to recognize outstanding achievement by yourself or your colleagues.

The biennial ANR Distinguished Service Awards recognize service and academic excellence in UC Cooperative Extension over a significant period of time. Awards highlight the use of innovative methods and the integration of research, extension and leadership.

The purpose of these awards is to recognize and reward outstanding accomplishments in five areas:

  • Outstanding Research
  • Outstanding Extension
  • Outstanding New Academic
  • Outstanding Team
  • Outstanding Leader

Winners of individual awards will receive a certificate and $2,000. Winners of the team award will share $5,000. Complete award criteria and instructions for submitting nominations are at

Submit all materials in the nomination packet by 5 pm., Feb.15, 2016.

For more information, feel free to contact the Academic Assembly Council Program Committee:

For more information about Academic Assembly Council, visit its website at

Posted on Monday, February 1, 2016 at 1:40 PM

Names in the news

Award-winning IPM team in UCCE Stanislaus County.
Anderson, Duncan win IPM Innovator Award

Kathy Anderson and Roger Duncan, UC ANR Cooperative Extension advisors in Stanislaus County, have won the Integrated Pest Management Innovator Award from the California Department of Pesticide Regulation. They are one of four groups that DPR honored.

"The 2015 IPM Innovator Awards demonstrate that Californians put a lot of time and effort into pest prevention techniques that can reduce the use of pesticides," said Tom Babb, DPR environmental program manager. "This year's award winners are steering change in urban and agricultural pest management while still protecting valuable crops and wildlife."

Anderson and Duncan were honored for leading the Tree & Vine IPM Breakfast Group. The Stanislaus County group focuses on improving the management of diseases and insect pests using IPM practices. They hold regular hands-on training sessions from March through June for local growers and pest control professionals. For the last 20 years, they have devised ways to respond quickly to new and emerging pests like anthracnose and bacterial spot diseases of almond, and branch wilt and Bot canker diseases in walnuts. They have also helped to develop methods for early detection of pests such as spotted wing drosophila, which attacks several fruits including cherries, raspberries and blueberries.

The awards were presented at a ceremony on Jan. 28 at the California Environmental Protection Agency headquarters in Sacramento.

Rick Miller, left, presents award to Steve Fennimore. Photo by Todd Fitchette
Fennimore honored by weed society

Steve Fennimore, UC ANR Cooperative Extension weed specialist based in Salinas, was honored by California Weed Science Society. Fennimore was recognized for managing a large group of authors who wrote chapters for “Principles of Weed Control,” Fourth Edition, an electronic and print CWSS publication.

Fennimore “did a great job managing all of the editors, drafts, publication options and inevitable issues” to put together an excellent textbook on weed management, said past CWSS board president Rick Miller, who presented the award.

Fennimore received the award at the society's annual meeting in Sacramento on Jan. 14.

Frank Zalom selected as fellow. Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey
Zalom named fellow of Royal Entomological Society

Frank Zalom, UC ANR Cooperative Extension integrated pest management specialist and professor in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, is a newly selected fellow of the Royal Entomological Society, London.

Zalom served as president of the Entomological Foundation in 2015 as it transitioned to a formal affiliation with the Entomological Society of America. He has been heavily involved in research and leadership in integrated pest management activities at the state, national and international levels. He directed the UC Statewide IPM Program for 16 years (1986-2002).

Zalom, who received his doctorate in entomology from UC Davis, focuses his research on California specialty crops, including tree crops (almonds, olives, prunes, peaches), small fruits (grapes, strawberries, caneberries) and fruiting vegetables (tomatoes), as well as on international IPM programs. 

The IPM strategies and tactics Zalom has developed include monitoring procedures, thresholds, pest development and population models, biological controls and use of less-toxic pesticides that have become standard in practice and that are part of the UC IPM Guidelines for these crops.

The Zalom lab has responded to a number of important pest invasions in the last decade, with research projects on glassy-winged sharpshooter, olive fruit fly, a new biotype of greenhouse whitefly, invasive saltcedar, light brown apple moth and spotted wing drosophila. They are currently working on two pest problems recently discovered in California, grapevine red blotch associated virus and brown marmorated stink bug.

The Royal Entomological Society, founded in 1833, plays a national and international role in disseminating information about insects and improving communication among entomologists. – Kathy Keatley Garvey


Posted on Monday, February 1, 2016 at 12:01 PM

Hansen REC calls for proposals

The Hansen Research and Extension Center in Ventura County is offering two distinct funding opportunities: HREC Research-Facility Projects and Thelma Hansen Fund Research & Education Grant Program.

HREC Research-Facility Projects — land, labor, equipment and facilities available for state-of-the-art research.

Applications for field and facility use space for research at the Hansen REC are accepted year-round. Complete applications received by Feb. 17 will be reviewed as part of the annual spring evaluation. Applications received after Feb. 17 will be reviewed in the next review cycle. Applications are evaluated by the Research Advisory Committee.

Please note that the HREC receives a significant portion of its support from the Thelma Hansen Endowment, which limits facility use subsidies to projects and programs that contribute directly to Ventura County agriculture. Although research can be conducted at the HREC that does not benefit Ventura County agriculture, these research projects are expected to bear the full cost of their research activities.

Thelma Hansen Fund (THF) Research & Education Grant Program — supports projects that encompass research, education, and outreach activities.

All projects (research, education and outreach) need to focus on agricultural and natural resource issues and needs relevant to Ventura County.

Proposals for research and education programs funded by the Thelma Hansen Fund are accepted year-round. Complete applications received by Feb. 17 will be reviewed as part of the annual spring evaluation. Applications received after Feb. 17 will be reviewed in the next review cycle. Applications are evaluated by the Research Advisory Committee.

Please carefully read the THF Program Request for Proposals (RFP) document for detailed information on the objectives, criteria and requirements of the program. There have been significant changes in this program since the last solicitation in 2013; e.g., a Letter of Intent is no longer required, geographical restrictions, etc.

The current THF grant program pool is approximately $300,000.

Questions concerning this revised program and the application process should be forwarded to HAREC Director Christopher M. Smith at For special needs or off-cycle evaluation of a proposal, email Smith or call (805) 662-6943.

To submit a proposal, visit

Posted on Monday, February 1, 2016 at 9:17 AM
  • Author: Patti Verdugo Johnson

Organic growers sought for survey on food safety

Alda Pires and Michele Jay-Russell, center, with food safety project partners.
Certified organic producers use animal-based soil amendments like manure and compost to improve soil fertility and quality. Currently the prevention of microbial contamination of crops has been based on waiting-period criteria of 90 to 120 days between application of raw manure and harvest. However, according to Alda Pires, a UC Agriculture and Natural Resources Cooperative Extension specialist at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, the standards are based on little scientific information and require more research and field testing.

Pires and Michele Jay-Russell, program manager with the Western Center for Food Safety, are co-principal investigators on a project to reduce the risk of foodborne pathogens on organic farms. They would like UC Cooperative Extension advisors who work with organic produce growers to assist the project by inviting the growers to participate in a new survey on manure use and food safety. The direct link to the survey is

The School of Veterinary Medicine and its partners recently brought together more than 30 producers, industry members and experts from across the country to discuss food safety in the fast-growing segment of organic agriculture, as part of a project funded by USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Organic Research and Extension Initiative (OREI). Participants included representatives from the UC Davis Western Center for Food Safety, the Organic Trade Association, the FDA Division of Produce Safety and the Division of Risk and Decision Analysis, the USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS), the Association of Compost Producers, the Organic Center, among others.

Information gathered at the workshop on the industry's use of manure and compost will help project leaders develop a full-scale research proposal to assess the efficacy of practices in the U.S. to reduce the risk of foodborne pathogens on organic farms. It will also help inform and guide policy such as the FDA's Produce Safety Rule that is recommending more research on waiting periods between raw manure application and harvest.

Facilitated by Pires and Jay-Russell, the workshop featured in-depth discussions, surveys and listening sessions on issues important to organic farmers. Topics included the use of raw manure and compost, rotational grazing practices and extension needs including technology innovations and other tools to help them comply with new food safety regulations. 

“We need to work together to leverage our efforts to prevent foodborne illnesses in the U.S.,” said Jay-Russell. “While one size won't fit all, organic farmers want and need scientific-based tools to help them adapt to change and ensure food safety.”

This national project is a collaboration with the Western Center for Food Safety, which conducts related research, and the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine's Western Institute for Food Safety and Security

Posted on Monday, February 1, 2016 at 8:37 AM
  • Author: Monique Garcia Gunther

Toolkit helps assess IPM impact

The Western IPM Center's IPM Adoption and Impacts Assessment Work Group, a collection of natural and social scientists from across the country, has developed online resources to help IPM researchers conduct basic impact assessments.

The online resources include modules on surveys, economic analysis, focus groups, secondary data, case studies, interviews and social network analysis. Chapters within each module describe when a measurement or method is appropriate, what to collect, how to collect it, how to analyze it and how to report it. 

For more information about the toolkit for assessing IPM, visit

Posted on Monday, February 1, 2016 at 8:01 AM

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