It is probably fair to say that most of the American public is disgusted by edible insect meals. Now, lawmakers in the United States are disgusted by the government funds going into edible insect research. Most Americans want nothing to do with edible insects, so it is likely that they do not want to see their tax dollars being spent on research into eating bugs. This is why lawmakers from multiple states have gone on the record in their opposition to edible insect research being funded with taxpayer money. In fact, some politicians are attempting to pass a bill that would prohibit the use of taxpayer dollars in edible insect research projects.
Senator Jeff Flake from Arizona is leading the charge against federally funded edible insect research. Flake is not opposed to edible insects, but he does not want taxpayer dollars going to startup businesses that specialize in edible insect production. According to Flake, this type of spending is just another example of careless government spending. Flake is not alone, as he and many other senators and congressman are looking to make amendments to a particular House spending package that allows government entities to spend as much as 100,000 dollars on edible insect projects. Flake’s amendment would block taxpayer dollars from going into the hands of edible insect companies.
One business owner who specializes in cricket feed says he has not yet felt the heat from Senator Flake. The California-based business is called Tiny Farms Inc., and it is run by Andrew Brentano, who is currently serving as the company’s CEO. According to Brentano, his business, as well as many others he knows of, has received funding from the USDA with no problems. Brentano firmly believes that federal funding into edible insects is not a waste of money, as edible insects could end up saving billions if it were to displace livestock meat as the primary source of protein for Americans.
Now That The Monsoon Season Has Arrived, Termites Are Swarming In Arizona
Many people probably assume that monsoon season in the southwest United States is just as unpleasant as the winter season in Minnesota. It is not uncommon to hear uninformed individuals comparing monsoons to hurricanes, as if they are similar climatic events. Some people believe that monsoons are enormous title waves, as confusing monsoons with tsunamis is inexplicably common. The truth is, unless you live in the American southwest, you have no reason for knowing what a monsoon is. Monsoons are basically heavy rainstorms that occur within desert regions. As you can imagine, residents of the American southwest find respite in the heavy rainfall that occurs every year during the months of July and August. However, monsoon season also comes with a few negatives. For example, the heavy rainfall that occurs during monsoon season increases termite activity, especially drywood termite activity. Currently in southern Arizona, the region’s monsoon season is causing drywood termites to swarm.
Most people are well aware of the fact that subterranean termites are the most destructive type of termite. No matter which region of North America you find yourself in, subterranean termites are more abundant than drywood and dampwood termites. If a pest control operator is called to a termite infested house within the dry, hot Arizona desert, then there is nearly a 100% chance that the pest control operator will end up using the particular insecticides that kill subterranean termites. Both drywood and dampwood termite eradication efforts require particular insecticides that do not work on subterranean termites. This is exactly why identifying the type of termite responsible for structural damage is key, especially during monsoon season when drywood termites suddenly begin to swarm.
Every year, monsoons in Arizona cause termites to come out of their well-hidden habitats. Termites are drawn to three things: moisture, heat, and, of course, wood. These three things are abundant within the natural environment that is located within the particular area of Tucson known as Pantano Wash. This area of Tucson is free from residential developments, which is why swarms of drywood termites have been spotted numerous times in the area. However, this area will soon undergo rapid construction, which will inevitably lead to drywood termite infestations in future structures.
Are you seeing an increase in termite activity in the region where you live?
Having a fear of insects is not uncommon. Even those people who claim to be fearless when encountering creepy-crawlies still probably become startled upon unexpectedly seeing one in their home. Since a few insects can inflict painful, or even deadly bites or stings, our instinctive fear of them keeps us safe. It is generally believed that humans developed this sense of fear over the course of evolution in order to recognize and avoid threats to our survival. However, how do we know that we are really experiencing “fear” when encountering creepy-crawlies? After all, the feeling of being scared does not necessarily match the feeling experienced during arthropod encounters.
Obviously, being alone in the dark, watching scary movies, or being stocked by a stranger elicits feelings of fear, but seeing a creepy looking arthropod, like a tarantula or a praying mantis, does not make us feel the same way. Of course, this is not to say that arthropod encounters don’t elicit negative feelings that make people uncomfortable, but perhaps we humans have been misjudging our own feelings toward insects. Many people would argue that the feelings that one experiences upon unexpectedly finding a creepy arthropod are merely subjective feelings that differ from individual to individual. This is a sensible opinion, but most neuroscientists would disagree. A recent study had researchers examining how our brains function upon finding insects. As it turns out, we are not scared of these multi-legged creatures at all, but we are certainly disgusted by them.
Scientists from the Georgia Institute of Technology have recently determined that the part of the human brain associated with disgust, and not fear, becomes activated upon finding insects. The feeling of disgust is associated with contamination and disease. This finding surprised the researchers that had been expecting to record a neurological fear response, but the fear centers remained inactive upon exposure to insects. Understandably, the study subjects became particularly disgusted upon seeing the common household insects that are capable of spreading disease pathogens, such as roaches. In fact, household insects elicited more fear in the subjects than insects in the wild. This makes sense, as humans have naturally become conditioned to fear the very pathogen-spreading insects that we encounter most often.
After reading this blog article, do you find it easy to believe that insects elicit feelings of disgust rather than fright? Or do you feel like the study’s finding runs contrary to your own feelings when finding an insect in your home?
Bee Control Experts | Magic Pest Control
Africanized honey bees, or killer bees as they are often called, are not often encountered within America. However, this is not to say that killer bees don’t exist in America, as killer bees migrated into America several decades ago. It took killer bees several years to arrive in America after they were accidentally released in South America. Once the bees arrived in America, they continued their habit of mating with native bee populations; this has allowed killer bees to propagate rapidly within America. The resultant offspring retain the aggressive demeanor of their killer bee parent. Given most people’s experiences with common bees, it may seem dramatic to describe Africanized honey bees as killer bees. However, this moniker is perfectly reasonable, as killer bees kill one or two Americans every year, and this number is likely to increase in response to the ecological effects of climate change. The first killer bee victim of the year in the United States in now hospitalized in critical condition after sustaining at least two hundred stings from head to toe.
The victim of the killer bees is a cleaning lady named Maria; she was swarmed by eighty thousand killer bees outside of a home that she had been cleaning in Lake Forest, California. By the time Maria arrived to the emergency room, doctors counted more than two hundred stings on nearly every inch of her body.
Shortly after Maria was attacked, firefighters arrived at the scene. Several of the firefighters sustained a number of bee stings while rescuing Maria from the killer bee attack. The firefighters eventually succeeded in repelling the bees with a carbon dioxide extinguisher. Apparently, when firefighters arrived, Maria’s face had become swollen to the point where she became unrecognizable due to the repeated stings to her face. Amazingly, Maria is expected to live. Shortly after the attack, pest control professionals removed ten pounds of beehives from the property where Maria was working. Hopefully Maria demands worker compensation.
Would you be willing to risk sustaining bee stings in order to rescue a helpless victim of an attack?
2018 Has Seen An Astounding Amount Of Deaths Due To Scorpion Attacks
Experts say that dying from an arachnid attack is exceptionally rare. However, citizens of Brazil may argue this claim, as 2017 saw 184 people die from scorpion stings in the South American country. This may seem like an unrealistic number, but the rate of scorpion deaths in Brazil has been growing with each passing year. According to statistical data, the 2018 year is projected to see the greatest amount of scorpion-induced deaths in Brazil’s history.
The amount of human deaths that have resulted from scorpion stings has more than doubled in only four years in Brazil. In 2013, 70 people in Brazil died from scorpion stings. By the time 2017 came around, this number had more than doubled to 184 deaths. Back in 2007, Brazil’s public health system reported 37,000 people as being attacked by scorpions in the country. Ten years later, the number of victims reach a staggering 126,000. These figures do not paint an optimistic picture concerning human-scorpion relations for the 2018 year in Brazil.
It is not surprising to learn that the rising death toll due to scorpion attacks in Brazil is quickly becoming a controversial issue in the country. For example, one of the latest victims of a fatal scorpion attack was a four year old girl who lived in Sao Paulo. This girl’s death further validated people’s suspicions concerning a lack of available anti-venom in smaller towns.
Most researchers and scientists are blaming the increase in scorpion fatalities on the rapid spike in deforestation and urbanization in Brazil. This process is forcing scorpions to quickly and cleverly adapt to surviving within urban areas. In fact, the particularly deadly scorpion species known as Tityus serrulatus has adapted to surviving within Brazil’s sewer system, as well as within garbage and rubble. Not long ago, this species was only able to survive within its native savannah habitat. These scorpions, commonly known as yellow scorpions, have adapted to the sewer system in order to feed on the abundant cockroach habitat contained within. The yellow scorpion, along with three other dangerous scorpion species, will only increase their presence in urban centers within Brazil in the future. This is why the public is demanding that anti-venom treatments become widely available and accessible to all of Brazil’s Citizens.
Do you think that Brazilian officials will have to seek international aid in order to curb the rising scorpion fatalities in the country?
Why Are Aquatic Insects Rare? | Magic Pest Control
It is obvious to anyone who has aged beyond their toddler years that there exists a whole lot of insects on this planet. Insect abundance is so great on Earth that even the harshest environments that you can think of most certainly contain at least a few forms of insect life. For example, insects can be found in the freezing cold of Antarctica as well as within the scorchingly hot Sahara Desert. Despite the resilience and abundance of insect species, hardly any insects have adapted to live near water. Considering the abundance of both insects and water on this planet, it is surprising to learn that very few aquatic insect species have come into existence.
Around seventy percent of the globe is covered in bodies of water. There exists approximately ten quintillion individual insects inhabiting earth right now. For those who need some perspective on this massive number, it contains nineteen zeroes. Despite this incredibly high number, there only exists around thirty to forty thousand insect types that are classified as aquatic. Of these forty thousand, only one hundred or so actually live within an aquatic environment. According to one marine biologist, there actually does exist many insect species that dwell within or near sources of freshwater, and there is nothing to prevent these same insects from inhabiting the ocean. Despite this, the number of insect species that dwell near or within the ocean is relatively small, and these aquatic insects are not being deterred by the ocean’s salt content. Although very few insect species dwell within ocean habitats, it is not uncommon for insect larvae and eggs to develop beneath the ocean’s surface. However, most of the larvae that develops within ocean habitats possess wings as adults, which could explain why these insects cannot survive in the sea. When aquatic larval species of insects develop into adults, they often experience difficulty obtaining food so far out into the ocean. This difficulty gives insects another good reason to avoid the ocean and other large bodies of water. For most adult insects, water means death.
Have you ever encountered an aquatic insect while swimming for recreation