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LONDON - Rodents have joined mosquitoes in the cross-hairs of scientists working on a next-generation genetic technology known as “gene drive” to control pests, Reuters reported.
Researchers in Scotland said they had developed two different ways to disrupt female fertility in rats and mice, building on a similar approach that has already been tested in the lab to eliminate malaria-carrying mosquitoes.
So-called gene drives push engineered genes through multiple generations by over-riding normal biological processes, so that all offspring carry two copies. Usually, animals would receive one copy of a gene from the mother and one from the father.
The technique is extremely powerful but also controversial, since such genetically engineered organisms could have an irreversible impact on the ecosystem.
Concerns about the proliferation of mutant species have led some to call for a gene drive ban, but Bruce Whitelaw of the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute told Reuters that would be short sighted.
“A moratorium would prevent the research which is required for us to understand if and how this can be used in an advantageous way for our society,” he told reporters in London.
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CLEVELAND, Ohio — Now available in the PCT store are a pair of books from renowned wildlife pest management expert Stephen M. Vantassel — Being Kind to Animal Pests, revised edition and The Wildlife Removal Handbook, 3rd edition.
Being Kind to Animal Pests, revised edition, released earlier this year, is Vantassel’s update of Steve Meyer’s classic resource, Being Kind to Animal Pests. The newly revised version provides users of cage and box traps specific principles and tips to improve the humaneness of these devices. Highlights include:
- Advice from published literature as well as the personal on-the-job experience of professional wildlife control operators.
- A discussion of equipment, baiting, setting, and use of cage and box traps.
- Specific advice for handling the most common nuisance animal species in the United States.
- A review of how to trap animals in the least injurious way practical.
The Wildlife Removal Handbook 3rd edition is for those new to managing wildlife problems, and for PCOs who have recently added this service offering. This edition has been updated to account for advances in wildlife control equipment and practices. In addition, the publication has new images as well as a new chapter not found in previous editions. Chapters highlights include:
- Getting started
- Inspecting structures
- Business issues
- Effective use of cage and box traps
The book reviews techniques for the control of squirrels, raccoons, woodchucks, chipmunks, and skunks. Details on how to remove skunk odor like a professional are also included.
Vantassel, the vertebrate pest specialist for the Montana Department of Agriculture, is a certified wildlife control professional and academy certified professional. For about five years, he ran his wildlife damage control company in Springfield, Mass. From 2004 to 2014, he was the program coordinator of wildlife damage program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He has twice been awarded Educator of the Year by the National Wildlife Control Operators Association.
Both Being Kind to Animal Pests, revised edition and The Wildlife Removal Handbook, 3rd edition can be ordered at http://store.pctonline.com/en/.
The 26th Annual Nebraska Urban Pest Management Conference will take place at the Cornhusker-Marriott Hotel (333 South 13th St, Lincoln, NE 68508) on February 13-14, 2018. This conference is a joint effort put forth by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension and the Nebraska State Pest Control Association with support and guidance from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture.
Download the registration form
This year’s conference aims to “continue the tradition of excellence put in motion by Dr. Shripat Kamble by offering up-to-date information about pests, best practices and raising the potential for anyone involved in the pest management industry. This is a two-day meeting in downtown Lincoln to visit with peers, university educators, researchers, manufacturers, and industry professionals to share knowledge, network, and recertify for commercial pesticide applicators.”
Some of the speakers include:
- Matt Frye, PhD, Extension Educator, New York State IPM Program – “Rodentology and Pest Management” and “The Dirt on Filth Flies”
- Sylvia Kenmuir, BCE, Director of Technical Training, Target Specialty Products – “Professionalism and Communication” and “Hybrid Training”
- Karen Vail, PhD, Professor and Extension Entomologist, University of Tennessee – “Quick Inspections for Bed Bugs”
- Tim Husen, PhD, Manager of Technical Services, Rollins – “Integrated Pest Management Today”, “Ant Control” and “Occasional Invaders”
- Robert Davis, PhD, Technical Services, BASF Professional & Specialty Solutions – “WDO Inspections”, “Facts on Fleas” and “Spider Identification, Biology and Control”
- Jim Kalisch, Entomologist and Diagnostician, UNL Department of Entomology – “Trends Throughout the Years”
- Janet Kintz-Early, PhD, Entomologist, JAK Consultant Services – “Water Pests: Moisture and WDO”, “Federal Regulator Affairs”
- Kristen van den Meiracker, PhD, Entomologist, JAK Consultant Services – “Biters: Pests That Make you Itch”
- Janet Hurley, Extension Specialist, Texas A&M – “Pests in Sensitive Accounts”
- Kacie Athey, PhD, Postdoc, University of Kentucky – “Insecticide Resistance in Bed Bugs”
- John Fech, Extension Educator, Nebraska Extension in Douglas-Sarpy Counties – “Media Interview Tips and Tricks”
- Kurt Goetzinger, Director, Omaha Advertising – “Using Social Media to Build Your Business”
- Frannie Miller, PSEP and IPM Coordinator, Kansas State University – “Eyes on You: Someone is Always Watching”
- Don Lewis, PhD, Professor and Extension Entomologist, Iowa State University – “Carpenter Ants and Bees”
- Jared Harris, Sales Representative, BASF Professional and Specialty Solutions – “What’s New in Construction”
- Zach Morehead, Sales Representative, Dow AgroSciences – “Termite Baiting”
- Carl Braun, Owner/Operator, Quality Pest Control – “NPMA Updates”
- Clyde Ogg, Extension Educator, UNL Pesticide Safety Education Program – “Nebraska Recertification”
For hotel reservations contact:
the Cornhusker Marriott, 333 S 13th St., Lincoln, NE 68508
Online Room Reservations at the Cornhusker Marriott for Urban Pest Management Conference Feb. 2018
Call: 1-866-706-7706 or 402-474-7474
Room Rate: $92.00 plus tax — Discount rate good through January 29, 2018
Mention Nebraska State Pest Control Association Conference
In May 2016, McCallister joined the vector products sales team as the Southeast Regional Sales Manager. In receiving this year’s award, he was honored for his outstanding customer service skills and effort in exceeding sales expectations with mosquito abatement districts, local municipalities and public health departments McCallister was also praised for his integral role in working with various mosquito control professionals in Florida on their emergency mosquito control protocols.
“As a former mosquito abatement district manager, Zane has been an incredible addition to our team, and continues to move us forward. He spends a great amount of time on-site with both our distributors and end-use customers in the Southeast to ensure we meet their specific needs,” said Loren Cunnington, Director of Sales, Eastern Region for the Zoëcon Professional Products division of Central Life Sciences. “He has been an essential part of the professional mosquito control group for nearly two years, and we are very pleased to recognize him with this award.”
McCallister and his family currently reside in Titusville, Fla. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Colorado Mesa University.