Have you seen me? Snout butterflies

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If you have driven, biked or walked anywhere in Central Texas recently, you most likely have noticed butterflies fluttering about.  These are not monarchs or swallowtails that we are used to seeing, but snout butterflies.  Unlike the Monarch butterflies that fly through Texas on the way to overwintering locations, these butterflies are moving to new areas in search of new food sources after depleting the food in the area they emerged.  The butterflies are also in search of mates. Snout butterfly caterpillars feed on hackberry trees, while adults… Read More →

Backyard Basics Fall Expo in San Antonio

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Come one, come all!  Bexar County AgriLife Extension is hosting their annual Backyard Basics program, September 17th and would love to see you there!  This gives you the opportunity to hear from a great variety of presenters on topics we’ve heard you want to hear about.  Great door prizes and give always in addition to fantastic speakers.  Please pre-register at https://agriliferegister.tamu.edu/BexarCounty

Free Seminar on Zika virus & Mosquito Management

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WHAT: Information provided on Zika virus, mosquitoes and their management.   WHERE: 1600 Smith Road, Austin, TX 78721   WHEN: Thursday, September 22nd: 10AM– 12PM   Space is limited so reserve your spot soon! 512-854-9606 or ebrown@ag.tamu.edu

Fleas

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Fleas are ectoparasites and females require a blood meal to produce eggs.  After feeding on a host, females can produce about 30-50 eggs per day that fall off the animal and into carpeting or other areas of the home or outside in areas where the animal frequents.  Larvae feed on organic matter as well as partially digested blood excreted by the adult fleas (yes, I mean poop).  After fleas pupate, they usually hatch out of the cocoon in about 2 weeks, but they can remain dormant for up… Read More →

Mosquito and mosquito disease information

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I know there has been a LOT of talk and information about mosquitoes and diseases they transmit, but I want to gather a bunch of information (from reputable sources) for you to use in case you need it.  So instead of remaking the wheel here, I will be linking to other good sources of information for you to check out. Mike Merchant’s post on Zika virus & NEW PUBLICATIONS FOR TEXANS! Mike Merchant’s post on do-it-yourself thermal fogging for mosquitoes AgriLife’s Mosquitoes of Texas page City of Austin… Read More →

Hi! Remember me? West Nile Virus

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With all the media attention on Zika lately, not many people are discussing (or are concerned with) West Nile Virus.  This disease is still around and may become a concern later this summer due to the hot, dry conditions we are currently experiencing in Central Texas. Cases of West Nile Virus (WNV) are generally seen in summer and increase throughout summer and into fall.  According to the Centers for Disease Control, most people (70-80%) that become infected with WNV show no symptoms.  About 1 in 5 people develop a… Read More →

House flies

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Instead of complaining about all the rain we’re getting, should we all switch to complaining about how HOT it is? Warmer temperatures speed up development time of insects.  This means that they can reproduce and offspring reach adulthood faster allowing them to produce their offspring  which will reach adulthood rapidly and so on.  Do you see how this can cause pest problems? The insect I’m focusing on today is the house fly. Why this particular insect?  Well, they are the ones that currently drive me crazy when I’m… Read More →

Aphids

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It seems that the cooler weather and moisture have disappeared and we’ve moved into sweltering temperatures. While it will be nice to dry out a bit, expect pest populations to be on the rise.  One to watch for is aphids as their populations can increase rapidly. Aphids are small, soft-bodied insects with “tailpipes” (better known as cornicles) coming off the tip of the abdomen.  Aphids come in a variety of colors and may or may not have wings.  They have an incomplete life cycle (egg- nymph- adult) with… Read More →

Emerald Ash Borer has been found in Texas

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In late April 2016, four emerald ash beetle adults were located in a trap by the Texas A&M Forest Service in Harrison County (near the Louisiana & Arkansas borders).  Currently, there are no confirmed trees infested with emerald ask borer. Emerald ash borer, often shortened to EAB, are invasive beetles that attack stressed and healthy ash trees.  These beetles are native to Asia and were discovered for the first time in the U.S. in Michigan back in 2002.  The beetle has now spread to 26 states and killed… Read More →

Fire Ants are Swarming! Treatment options

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There are numerous ways to manage fire ants, but they are often broken into two categories- broadcast treatments and individual mound treatments.  Individual mound treatments are used to treat one mound at a time and can be labor intensive and may result in more pesticide being spread into the environment.  Broadcast treatments spread product (granular or bait) over a large area. Individual mound treatments include pouring boiling water onto the mound, using insecticide mound drenches, spreading insecticide granules onto the mound and watering them in, sprinkling insecticidal dusts… Read More →