Tom TurpinOn Six Legs7/23/15
Boot jacks are something that all of us who grew up on a farm have probably used at one time or another. They are devices that aid in removal of a person’s boots. The boot jack allows you to take off your boots without touching them with your hands. It could be said that boot jacks are a “hands free” device, just like the cellphones that are designed so that you can use them and still keep your hands on the steering wheel of an automobile.
I don’t think that driving a vehicle while talking on a cellphone is a good idea even if the device is hands-free. However, the idea of removing your boots without touching them is very a good thing indeed. Here’s why: People associated with the livestock industry often wear boots. That means that farm boots are likely to come in contact with all kinds of stuff, including animal manure. Boots adorned with manure can be a sign of a hard-working person, but they are a bit messy to remove. That’s where the no-hands boot jack comes in.
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Over 50 butterfly enthusiasts gathered on Saturday, July 18th at the Evonik Wildlife Habitat Area learn about butterflies and participate in our annual census. This year 316 individuals from 27 species of butterflies and skippers were counted. No new species were counted. Complete counts from 2015 and all previous years are posted at Butterfly Counts.
Gino Nearns with Beth York
On July 15th and 16th, our department hosted the First Annual Buprestid/ Cerambycid Training Workshop for insect surveyors (such as CAPS and USDA) to help them perform their work more efficiently and effectively. Twenty-three trainees from as far away as California and Oregon learned better trapping techniques and were given identification keys and information. Funded by the Farm Bill, the workshop will move around the country, being offered in a different state each year so that all who are interested in learning more about these wood borers have the opportunity to attend. The 2016 training will be in Florida.
Key organizers for the workshop were Gino Nearns, PERC Collections Manager and Bobby Brown, USDA-APHIS Insect Identifier. When asked to pull together this workshop, they planned the entire event, including the venue, agenda and training materials. Larry Bledsoe, current Indiana CAPS Survey Coordinator, also attended this workshop.
Over five hundred beekeepers and scientists attended the 14th annual Heartland Apicultural Society (HAS) meeting in beautiful Albion, Michigan this year. This three-day event enjoyed record attendance!
Greg Hunt and Krispn Given from the Purdue bee lab received an award given by the Heartland Honey Bee Breeders Cooperative (HHBBC) at the HAS meeting. The award is for distinguishing themselves in the world of apiculture through the development of bees that chew mites, and instrumental insemination.
Congratulations to Greg and Krispn!