Become a fan on Facebook Follow us on Twitter USDA Blog Feed Watch USDA videos on YouTube Subscribe to receive e-mail updates View USDA Photos on Flickr Subscribe to RSS Feeds

Posts tagged: Hungry Pests

A Day in Your Life with Invasive Species

Mexican fruit flies on citrus fruit: Jack Dykinga, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org

Mexican fruit flies on citrus fruit: Jack Dykinga, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org

USDA has proclaimed April to be Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month, so this is the perfect time to consider how invasive species can crawl, swarm or ooze their way into your daily life.  The fact is, invasive pests and diseases hunger for many of the same things we enjoy each day.  And as they feast on America’s agricultural and natural resources, they can devastate crops and forests, throw ecosystems out of balance and lead to lost jobs and closed export markets. Read more »

Spot the Purple Trap for EAB Awareness Week May 20-26

Look for purple traps like this one during EAB Awareness Week.

Look for purple traps like this one during EAB Awareness Week.

This is Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Awareness Week.  Before the Memorial Day holiday and summer travel season begin, we take this time to remind everyone to be careful not to spread the EAB unintentionally.

EAB is one of many “Hungry Pests” that can cause significant damage to our country’s natural resources.  Since first being identified in 2002, EAB is responsible for the destruction of tens of millions of ash trees in 15 states in the Midwest and Northeast. Read more »

Meet USDA’s Youngest Ally in the Fight against Invasive Species: Ben Shrader, Invasive Hunter

In the battle to preserve agriculture and the environment, Ben Shrader is Luke Skywalker and invasive species are Darth Vader.

Ben, a young man from central Texas, first became interested in invasive species after reading a newspaper article about plants wreaking havoc on native ecosystems. Also known as “Commander Ben,” he describes it as a “battle in nature, like good versus evil” and decided that he wanted to help the “good guys” win.

In his first of many spars with invasive species, Ben conducted a science fair project on giant reed (Arundo donax), an invasive plant that is damaging riparian ecosystems in his home state of Texas. But Ben didn’t stop there. Combining his love for filmmaking with his passion for science, Ben created a blog entitled “Commander Ben-The Invasive Hunter,” where he records his exploits and posts videos and other content to teach kids about the fight against invasive species. Read more »

What Can Bird Watchers Do to Fight Invasive Species?

Invasive species can spread easily by hitching a ride on birdwatchers’ gear, and are unintentionally transported to new locations.

Invasive species can spread easily by hitching a ride on birdwatchers’ gear, and are unintentionally transported to new locations.

For a bird watcher like me, there’s nothing quite like the thrill of spotting a rare or elusive bird—or watching any of our feathered friends in their natural habitats.  Whether you are a die-hard enthusiast or just take pleasure in seeing birds outside your window, you have a deep appreciation for the outdoors and wildlife. Read more »