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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Issue: January/February 2003
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Northern PlainFacts.Northern PlainFacts image extension.

Issue: January/February 2003


The Northern PlainFacts from the USDA-ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory in Sidney, Montana, offers brief updates on research, personnel and events at the lab, and includes contact names and e-mail addresses for those interested in further details.

 

In This Month's Issue:

 

Researcher Discussed Sugar Beet Root Maggot Control at Reporting Session

Researchers Report on Grasshopper / Mormon Cricket Research at National Board Meeting

Technician Recognized for Cooperative Biocontrol Efforts

Irrigation Specialist Speaks at Montana Conservation Conference

Entomologist Participates in Weed Seminar

North Dakota State University Scientists to Speak at NPARL

Researchers to Participate in International Plant Pathology Congress

NPARL Representatives to Attend Central Plains Irrigation Conference

Researchers to Participate in SRM Annual Meeting

Irrigation Specialist to Speak at Vineyards Association Meeting

NPARL Representatives to Receive ARS Tech Transfer Award

Representative Gives Saltcedar Presentation

 

 

 

Researcher Discussed Sugar Beet Root Maggot Control at Reporting Session

Dr. Stefan T. Jaronski presented a paper at the 33rd Annual Sugarbeet Reporting Session, in Fargo ND, January 8, 2003. The meeting is sponsored by the Sugarbeet Research and Education Board. Jaronski's paper is entitled, "Post-planting Applications of Insect Pathogenic Fungi to Control Sugarbeet Root Maggot Within a Bio-Based Management System" and is coauthored with Robert Dregseth and M. Boetel of North Dakota State University, and Barry Jacobsen and Ben Larson of Montana State University. Jaronski is also a coauthor on two other papers at the meeting. Both concern different aspects of sugarbeet root maggot biocontrol.

(Stefan Jaronski, 406.433.9486, sjaronski[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Researchers Report on Grasshopper / Mormon Cricket Research at National Board Meeting

Dr. Stefan Jaronski presented the results of his 2003 grasshopper related research at the Annual Grasshopper Management Board Meeting in Aurora CO, Jan 14, 2003. His talk, entitled "Using vegetable oils to enhance Beauveria bassiana efficacy against grasshoppers" is the product of collaborative research with Jeff Lockwood, University of Wyoming, wherein the two are seeking to use grasshopper attractants to reduce the use rates of an EPA-registered Beauveria fungus biopesticide on rangeland and thus its cost to the rancher/land manager.  Research Ecologist Greg Sword also presented a paper on his research entitled "Mormon cricket research update: Migratory behavior, tracking and remote sensing." NPARL Research Entomologist David Branson also presented in the session as a member of the Executive Committee of the National Grasshopper Management Board.

(Stefan Jaronski, 406.433.9486, sjaronski[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(Greg Sword, 406.433.9429, gsword[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(David Branson, 406.433.9406, dbranson[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Technician Recognized for Cooperative Biocontrol Efforts

Biological Science Technician Mary Mayer was recognized along with Vic Roberts of the Bureau of Land Management in Lewistown, MT, for their joint efforts in the collection and redistribution of weed biological control agents throughout the state and the region. Over the last 10 years, the duo has distributed millions of biocontrol agents throughout Montana’s counties and to numerous federal agencies, located both in and outside the state. The duo were among four nominees for the Montana Weed Control Association’s 2003 "Federal Weed Fighter of the Year" award and were recognized for their dedication at the Association’s annual meeting held in Butte, MT Jan. 14-16. They were nominated by their program director, BLM’s Hank McNeel, who ultimately won the award.

(Mary Mayer, 406.433.9426, mmayer[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Irrigation Specialist to Speak at Montana Conservation Conference

Agricultural Engineer and irrigation specialist Dr. Robert Evans will discuss "Managing Irrigated Crops in Times of Drought," during the 2003 Annual Conference of the Montana Chapter of the Soil and Water Conservation Society to be held January 28-29, 2003, in Lewistown, MT. This year’s conference theme was "Drought: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly – Economic Sustainability." Included among the invited presenters is Montana Lt. Governor Karl Ohs, who will discuss the economic effects of drought on Montana. The conference, which typically attracts 100 or more participants, draws from the farming and ranching community, producer organizations, private corporations and interested federal, state and local agency personnel.

(Robert Evans, 406.433.9496, revans[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Entomologist to Participate in Weed Seminar

Research Entomologist Dr. Dave Kazmer will give two noxious weed presentations, one on houndstongue and the other on saltcedar, at the Dawson County Weed Seminar in Glendive, MT, on January 28, 2003. In his presentations, Dr. Kazmer will discuss research efforts into the ecology, biology and management strategies of both plants. Approximately 100 area producers, weed officials and other interested persons regularly attend this regional event.

(Dave Kazmer, 406.433.9440, dkazmer[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

North Dakota State University Scientists to Speak at NPARL

Drs. Paul Ode and Denise Olson (North Dakota State University - Fargo, Entomology Dept.) will be visiting the Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory in Sidney, MT, January 30-31, 2003. In addition to meetings with ARS researchers, Drs. Ode and Olson will lead an informal roundtable discussion of their research activities at 3 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 30. Dr. Olson, an entomologist and weed biocontrol specialist, has been a research cooperator with the USDA-ARS TEAM Leafy Spurge Research and Demonstration project headquartered at NPARL. Dr. Ode is an insect ecologist and a recent addition to the NDSU Entomology Department staff interested in learning about research going on in the region.

Researchers to Participate in International Plant Pathology Congress

Drs. Robert T. Lartey, TheCan Caesar Ton-That, and Anthony Caesar will be presenting posters at the 8th International Congress of Plant Pathology in Christchurch, New Zealand, February 2-7, 2003. For his part, NPARL Plant Pathologist Dr. Anthony Caesar has been invited to discuss his poster presentation entitled "Synergistic interaction of plant pathogens and insects in classical biological control of exotic rangeland weeds." Dr. Lartey, a plant pathologist, and Dr. Caesar-TonThat, a microbiologist, will also present two posters on their joint research into the biological control of Cercospora leaf spot of sugar beet, a foliar disease, using soil-inhabiting fungal agents. The posters are entitled, "Mechanism of inhibition of Cercospora beticola by antagonistic Trichoderma species," and "Antagonism of Cercospora beticola by Laetisaria arvalis involves laccase degradation of cercosporin." Dr. Caesar-TonThat will also present a third poster entitled, "Wood chipping almond brush and its effects on nematodes, basidiomycetes, soil aggregation, soil nutrients, and almond tree growth." The theme for the 8th International Congress is "Solving Problems in the Real World," and it also incorporates the 14th Biennial Australasian Plant Pathology Conference.

(Robert T Lartey, 406.433.9490, rlartey[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(TheCan Caesar Ton-That, 406.433.9415, caesart[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(Anthony Caesar, 406.433.9412, caesara[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Representatives to Attend Central Plains Irrigation Conference

Agricultural Engineer and irrigation specialist Dr. Robert Evans will be traveling to Colby, KS, to attend the Central Plains Irrigation Conference and Exposition Feb. 4- 5, 2003. Also attending from NPARL will be Physical Scientist Bill Iversen and Technician Mark Gaffri. Following the conference, NPARL’s scientists will meet with other state and federal researchers from Kansas, Colorado and Nebraska to provide updates on ongoing irrigation research activities.

(Robert Evans, 406.433.9496, revans[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(Bill Iversen, 406.433.9417, biversen[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(Mark Gaffri, 406.433.9419, mgaffri[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Researchers to Participate in SRM Annual Meeting

Research Entomologist Dr. David Branson will be participating in the 56th Annual Meeting of the Society for Range Management to be held in Casper, WY Feb. 2-6, 2003. Dr. Branson will be presenting a poster entitled "The effects of rangeland fire on grasshopper populations and vegetation in a northern mixed grass prairie." Also attending the session from NPARL will be Research Ecologist Dr. Gerry Anderson and Biological Sciences Technician Donovan Craig.

(David Branson, 406.433.9406, dbranson[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(Gerald Anderson, 406.433.9416, ganderson[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

(Donovan Craig, 406.433.9497, dcraig[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Irrigation Specialist to Speak at Vineyards Association Meeting

Agricultural Engineer Dr. Robert Evans, head of NPARL’s Agricultural Systems Research Unit, has been invited to speak at the Virginia Vineyards Association Annual Technical Conference in Charlottesville, VA, Feb. 13-15, 2003. Dr. Evans will discuss his long-term research on frost control in vineyards begun while he was at Washington State University. The title of his presentation is "Frost avoidance and frost protection and other aspects of agricultural meteorology." Typically around 200 people attend the conference.

(Robert Evans, 406.433.9496, revans[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Representatives to Receive ARS Tech Transfer Award

Ecologist and Program Leader Gerry Anderson, Technical Information Specialist Bethany Redlin and Biological Science Aide Jill Miller will be traveling to Beltsville, MD Feb. 11-14 to accept a top ARS technology transfer award for their work with The Ecological Areawide Management (TEAM) of Leafy Spurge, a six-year research and demonstration project begun in 1997. Other members of TEAM Leafy Spurge earning the award, but unable to attend the Feb. 12 ceremony, include former TLS Coordinator, Ecologist Chad Prosser, now with Theodore Roosevelt National Park in Medora, ND, and Entomologist Robert Richard of USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) in Fort Collins, CO. The group earned the award for their efforts in disseminating information on the effective integrated pest management of leafy spurge, a noxious, invasive weed that infests approximately 5 million acres in the U.S. and Canada. Funded by ARS and managed cooperatively with APHIS, TEAM Leafy Spurge representatives have distributed more than 48 million biological control flea beetles; traveled more than 250,000 miles to give 100 plus presentations, and produced more than 20 informational products, including brochures, CD-ROMs, manuals, newspaper articles and a PBS documentary. These informational products have reached a huge audience, with close to 45,000 copies of its most popular product – a "how-to" manual on the biological control of leafy spurge – distributed in the U.S. and Canada.

(Gerald Anderson, 406.433.9416, ganderson[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

Representative Gives Saltcedar Presentation

Postdoctoral Research Associate John Gaskin gave a presentation entitled "Cryptic Invasion of Hybrid Tamarix Plants: Implications for Biological Control" at USDA-ARS, Red River Valley Agricultural Research Center in Fargo, North Dakota, Tuesday, Feb. 25. While in Fargo, he also consulted with ARS researchers Dr. Michael E. Foley, Dr. James V. Anderson, Dr. Wun S. Chao, and Dr. David P. Horvath. In his post at NPARL, Dr. Gaskin is studying the systematics and population structure of invasive plants, particularly whitetop or hoarycress (Lepidium draba, formerly Cardaria draba) and saltcedar (Tamarix spp.). The goal is to determine which genotypes of these exotic plants are invading, where the genotypes originated from in Eurasia, which native and exotic species they are most closely related to, and where the invasive genotypes are distributed in the U.S. The latter information will then be used to aid the selection of potential biocontrol agents.

(John Gaskin, 406.433.2020, jgaskin[at]sidney.ars.usda.gov)

 


Last Modified: 11/12/2004