· Heartland CISMA air potato beetle biocontrol project idea for this summer: Dave Butcher of the Florida Forest Service asked if we could do a CISMA release of air potato beetles. Eric Rohrig of FFS says he’s interested but wants to know the scale. If you’re interested in having this happen, let me know by Tuesday, May 20th so I can get an idea of how many sites we’re talking about. Tell me the site name and location. The timing of release will depend on how many sites are interested in participating and how we do this. They would require 1 month notice (average beetle development time from egg to adult) for release on multiple sites at once or we could get a few hundred once or twice a week for a few weeks, which would require less notice. Once we decide who’s interested, we’ll figure out which way to go (big bang or extended release).
· Don’t forget the West Central Upland Working Group RANKING MEETING will be Wednesday May 21st at Circle B Bar Reserve starting at 10:30 am. Contact Tabitha Biehl for more info at office: 863-534-7377, cell: 863-899-8157
Circle B Bar Reserve
4399 Winter Lake Road
Lakeland, Fl 33803
· Heartland CISMA on Facebook and Twitter: Brendan Myers, Shannon Carnevale and I worked on a social media policy and, if you’re a friend of Heartland CISMA on FB (and you SHOULD be), you’ve noticed that Brendan has been sharing interesting content there on a regular basis. Brendan is committed to keeping the FB and Twitter accounts lively and he welcomes your stories and, especially pictures. Attached are some guidelines and how to contact him. Get the word out about your work!
· If you haven’t seen the latest reports of Roundup toxicity, well, how have you missed that? The title is “Major Pesticides Are More Toxic to Human Cells Than Their Declared Active Principles” (Bio Med Research International, Feb 26 2014) and it’s inspired lots of commentary and a petition to EPA and FDA to “immediately suspend Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide.” I contacted UF IFAS for their take on this and they sent these:
o Ken Langeland, [just retired], wrote this article a few years ago that is very good: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/ag248
o A research group in Italy suggested that glyphosate and GMO plants cause cancer. Below is a link to the rebuttal. The rebuttal was so powerful that the journal retracted the Italian paper. http://parrottlab.uga.edu/parrottlab/Publications/Arjo-et-al-TRAG-2013.pdf [Note that the most of the authors of the new paper inspiring all this attention are also authors on the retracted paper, suggesting extra scrutiny of their conclusions is warranted.]
o Also attached is a recent review article looking at 10 years of data and health effects from GM crops.
This is worth investigation, but I’m skeptical of big, bold results because… well, cold fusion. Interesting story on the problem with focusing on big, bold results this morning: http://www.npr.org/2014/05/19/313844261/why-reporting-on-scientific-research-may-warp-findings .
The Nature Conservancy