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You are here: Home / News and Events / In the News / Dec 2010
News and Events
In the News

Dec 2010

Selected "In the News" items previously featured on NISIC for this month. See the In the News Archives to view previously posted items by year and month.

See our What's New section for current items of interest.

The ocean in Devonian times: is past prologue in biodiversity collapse? - University of Michigan Museum of Paleontology

What Triggers Mass Extinctions? Study Shows How Invasive Species Stop New Life (Dec 29, 2010)
National Science Foundation.
An influx of invasive species can stop the dominant natural process of new species formation and trigger mass extinction events, according to recent research results published in PLoS ONE. The study of the collapse of Earth's marine life 378 to 375 million years ago suggests that the planet's current ecosystems, which are struggling with biodiversity loss, could meet a similar fate.


Non-Local Untreated Firewood Poses Threat to Pacific Northwest Forests: Thirty-five percent of firewood is brought from another location, increasing risk of invasion from forest pests (Dec 21, 2010)
Oregon Invasive Species Council.
Moving firewood can increase the risk of introducing new invasive species that kill native trees. To prevent the spread of these pests, the states of Idaho, Oregon and Washington launched a tri-state outreach campaign in 2010 to inform the public about the dangers of moving firewood to Pacific Northwest forests. The national campaign, Don't Move Firewood, recommends buying firewood that was cut locally (within 50 miles) where it will be burned.

USDA 2010 Colony Collapse Disorder Progress Report

USDA Releases 2010 Honey Bee Colony Collapse Disorder Progress Report (Dec 17, 2010)
USDA. Agricultural Research Service.
ARS scientists are hard at work trying to solve the mystery of Colony Collapse Disorder, which results in empty hives and vanished honey bees, and their efforts are detailed in the new USDA 2010 Colony Collapse Disorder Progress Report unveiled this week under the auspices of the USDA CCD Steering Committee co-chaired by Kevin Hackett, ARS' National Program Leader for Pollination.

Bighead carp - USGS

President Signs Levin's Asian Carp Prevention and Control Act into Law (Dec 14, 2010)
Senator Carl Levin.
President Obama signed into law that will aid in the fight against the further spread of Asian carp in the United States. The Asian Carp Prevention and Control Act, S.1421, will add the bighead carp species of Asian carp to a list of injurious species that are prohibited from being imported or shipped in the United States under the Lacey Act.


The Invasive Species Biologist's Version of "The Night Before Christmas" by Les Mehrhoff (PDF | 460 KB)
Invasive Plant Control.
A new twist of the original poem 'Twas the Night Before Christmas', with the perspective of an invasive species biologist.

Thousand cankers - Invasive.org

Species Profile -- Thousand Cankers Black Walnut Disease
USDA. NAL. National Invasive Species Information Center.
Thousand cankers black walnut disease has produced widespread death of black walnuts in many western states during the past decade. Other species of walnut such as Arizona walnut, English walnut, and California walnut have all shown varying degrees of susceptibility to this fungus. Initial symptoms involve a yellowing and thinning of the upper crown, which progresses to include death of progressively larger branches. During the final stages large areas of foliage may rapidly wilt. Trees often are killed within three years after initial symptoms are noted.

Research personnel examing animal for foot and mouth disease - USDA

USDA Scientists Discover How Foot-and-Mouth Disease Virus Begins Infection in Cattle (Dec 13, 2010)
USDA. Agricultural Research Service.
USDA scientists have identified the primary site where the virus that causes foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) begins infection in cattle. This discovery could lead to development of new vaccines to control and potentially eradicate FMD, a highly contagious and sometimes fatal viral disease of cloven-hoofed animals that is considered the most economically devastating livestock disease in the world.

Dead ponderosa pines in the Jemez Mountains at Bandelier National Monument - Craig D. Allen

National Team of Scientists Predicts Continued Death of Forests in Southwestern U.S. Due to Problems Caused by Climate Change (Dec 13, 2010)
University of California - Santa Barbara. Office of Public Affairs.
University and government scientists have found that if current climate projections hold true, the forests of the Southwestern U.S. face a bleak future, with more severe and more frequent forest fires, higher tree death rates, more insect infestation, and weaker trees. Past forest studies have shown that warmer temperatures are associated with wildfires and bark beetle outbreaks. The findings are published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) article Forest responses to increasing aridity and warmth in the southwestern United States.

Asian citrus psyllid - USDA, ARS Photo Library

USDA Scientists Study Essential Oils to Attract Asian Citrus Psyllid (Dec 7, 2010)
USDA. Agricultural Research Service.
Chemicals emitted by citrus plants and their relatives that attract Asian citrus psyllids are being tested by USDA scientists and their cooperators, and could help control the spread of citrus greening disease transmitted by the psyllids.

Asian longhorned beetle

Ravenous Foreign Pests Threaten National Treasures (Dec 6, 2010)
University of California at Santa Barbara.
Researchers at the University of California at Santa Barbara, Michigan State University, the University of Central Florida, and the United States Department of Agriculture's Forest Service analyzed the impact of invasive insects and pathogens introduced into the United States through 2007, on forests. They found that more than 455 insects and 16 pathogens are destroying everything from oak trees in California to redbay trees in Central Florida. Based on the pattern, the researchers predict one especially destructive pest will sneak into the nation every two years. Their findings are published in the BioScience article Historical Accumulation of Nonindigenous Forest Pests in the Continental United States.


NPAA to Tackle Invasive Species Threat with Sea Grant, New Marketing Partner (Dec 5, 2010)
National Professional Anglers Association.
The National Professional Anglers Association (NPAA) will be working in conjunction with a new marketing partner, the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network to educate the public about the impact of aquatic invasive species. The NPAA will make educational materials available to their members to help them understand and explain the severity of the invasive species problem. Members will be speaking from tournament stages, at thousands of seminars, in guide boats and wherever members travel. A special segment will be incorporated into all NPAA youth fishing clinics.

Emerald Ash Borer

Invasive Pest Danger Closer Than You Think (Dec 1, 2010)
Pennsylvania State University.
In Australia, when crossing from one state to another, travelers may encounter a quarantine stop and may be required to forfeit recently purchased fruits and vegetables as a hedge against invasive pests. But in the U.S., crossing state lines is freewheeling, according to researchers from the U.S., Australia and New Zealand, who evaluated the threat of invasive pests to states from within the country. Researchers reported "We concluded that the immediate threat from known invasive insect pests is greater from within the U.S. than without. Our findings have significant implications for biosecurity policy and the need to consider security measures beyond established national borders."

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