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Category — Bugs

Insect farming startup raises $9.3M, builds North America’s largest mealworm facility east of Seattle

Beta Hatch CEO Virginia Emery, center, wields a shovel during a ceremonial groundbreaking in September with officials from the city of Cashmere, Wash. (Beta Hatch Photo)

Emery has said insects have the potential to be the world’s most sustainable protein.

By Kurt Schlosser
Geek Wire
December 11, 2020

Excerpt:

Beta Hatch is planning to grow more than insects east of Seattle in Cashmere, Wash. The 5-year-old startup is growing its entire operation and in the process has raised $9.3 million in new funding, the company announced Friday.

Founder and CEO Virginia Emery, a PhD entomologist and her team of “insect entrepreneurs,” have been working on a plan to revolutionize the animal feed business out of a facility in SeaTac, Wash., south of Seattle. The new funds will help Beta Hatch complete construction on a 42,000-square-foot flagship facility in Cashmere, a small city in Chelan County, Wash., that is known for its fruit packing and processing industry.

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December 17, 2020   Comments Off on Insect farming startup raises $9.3M, builds North America’s largest mealworm facility east of Seattle

Leave the Leaves to Benefit Wildlife

Where the leaves are in contact with the soil, I often find great numbers of earthworms that help make better soil for my garden.

By Scott Hoffman Black
Xerces
12 November 2020

Excerpt:

Out of sight often means out of mind for people and fall is a time when you do not see the bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects that where flitting around your flowers all summer. Where do these insects go when they are not visiting your garden? Some do migrate—like the monarch butterfly, flying south to overwinter in trees in Mexico or along the California coast—but the vast majority spend their entire life in and around your property. Many of our native solitary bees have laid eggs and provisioned nests in soil or in standing dead trees or hollowed out branches where the young are pupating. Bumble bee queens have found areas to overwinter under branches, in rock walls and in other relatively dry, snug places.

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November 18, 2020   Comments Off on Leave the Leaves to Benefit Wildlife

Bee and Me

By Elle J. McGuinness (Author), Heather Brown (Illustrator)
Andrews McMeel Publishing
Dec 20 2008

When a boy finds a bee trapped in his bedroom he hides in fear. But when the friendly bee explains how helpful bees are, he learns that great things sometimes come in little, buzzing packages. Bee & Me is also a great tool for helping little ones overcome their fear of bees, and learn about their importance in our gardens and orchards.

Link.

October 26, 2020   Comments Off on Bee and Me

Canada: Hooligan Hens provides a chicken visit in the city as a natural ‘pesticide’

Backyard bug problem? Send in the hens to do the dirty work

By Jennifer Dorozio
CBC News
Sep 08, 2020

Excerpt:

It’s a common fixation for backyard gardeners in Calgary: how to beat what’s eating their harvest.

The appearance of critters like slugs, aphids and cabbage moths typically means gardeners have to decide whether to leave them be or attempt some sort of pest control.

Well, there’s a new-but-old-school method of ridding a garden of invaders this year: hungry hens.

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September 18, 2020   Comments Off on Canada: Hooligan Hens provides a chicken visit in the city as a natural ‘pesticide’

Why allotments offer urban oases for bees and butterflies

A roadside wildflower strip in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, UK. Rinke Vinkenoog, Author provided

In a new study, researchers have unveiled a “Plan Bee” for boosting biodiversity in the midst of city life.

Rinke Vinkenoog
The Conversation
July 15, 2020

Excerpt:

The researchers created identical flower beds in parks and other public green spaces in the German city of Aachen, and replicated these in a nearby rural area. They watched for the bees, bumblebees, wasps and other insects that arrived and compared their diversity between the two.

These beds included a combination of flowers that were likely to attract a diverse range of species, from black-eyed Susan, a flower that appeals to a wide variety of pollinators, to snapdragons which are favoured by bumblebees. Insects which live in colonies, like honeybees and bumblebees, were recorded less often in the flower beds than expected. These species often forage over several kilometres, but they will only do so if there is lots of nectar and pollen to make it worth the effort.

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July 19, 2020   Comments Off on Why allotments offer urban oases for bees and butterflies

University of Illinois professors to study pesticides in urban agricultural communities

UIS Assistant Professor of Public Health Egbe Egiebor (left) and Associate Professor of Public Health Dorine Brand will receive a grant to study the risk of pesticide use and air dispersion in urban agricultural communities. (University of Illinois Springfield)

“The project will contribute to sustainable air quality management for health and environment protection in the urban-agriculture interface and will improve long term planning and management of pesticide risk and its impacts on the environment as well as communities.”

By WICS/WRSP Staff
May 14th 2020

Excerpt:

UIS Assistant Professor of Public Health Egbe Egiebor and Associate Professor of Public Health Dorine Brand will receive about $168,000 from the overall three-year $500,000 grant awarded to Tuskegee University.

The grant will help the professors study the risk of pesticide use and air dispersion in urban agricultural communities.

The professors will evaluate present methods for monitoring and modeling the atmospheric spread of pesticide pollutants under numerous weather conditions, identify hotspots, and assess the vulnerability of affected communities.

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May 20, 2020   Comments Off on University of Illinois professors to study pesticides in urban agricultural communities

Canada: The Wondrous World of Greenthumb’s Garden

TV Series – 13 Episodes – Worm’s Life 103

Directed by Chris Malazdrewicz, François Côté
Production Agency Cinemaria
2003, 23 minutes 40 s each

Lucy has to write a school project but isn’t interested in Glory’s suggestion that she do it on worms. Lucy thinks worms are boring. Glory sets out to prove her wrong by finding the perfect worm, and he does – a timid little worm named Squirmy. It’s only when Glory and the others learn of the important work worms do in the garden that Squirmy really starts to believe in himself.

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March 18, 2020   Comments Off on Canada: The Wondrous World of Greenthumb’s Garden