All Posts Tagged as 'Pests'
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MONSTER HYBRID TUMBLEWEED SPECIES IS TAKING OVER CALIFORNIA, SCIENTISTS WARN
A new invasive species of tumbleweed that can grow up to six feet in height is taking over parts of California—and scientists are warning it could spread even further as climate change makes its growing conditions more favorable.
Salsola ryanii was first identified in California in 2002. It is a hybrid made up of two other invasive species—Salsola tragus, which is native to Russia and China, and Salsola australis, from Australia and South Africa. The latter, scientists say, is "one of the world's worst weeds" and is currently found in 48 U.S. states. The new species, is however, far bigger and faster growing than its parents, reaching about six feet in height.
A tumbleweed is a plant that breaks away from its roots towards the end of summer. It is blown around by the wind—its means of seed dispersal. In doing this, tumbleweeds cause huge problems. They can lead to traffic accidents and damage property. Invasive species also cause problems for the agriculture industry and native ecosystems.
'Wonderful' Michigan Girl, 9, Is Mauled to Death by 3 Dogs, and Pet Owner Is Arrested
A 9-year-old girl riding her bike near her family’s Detroit home died after an attack by three pit pulls Monday afternoon, after the girl’s father said he’d warned the dogs’ owner that his fence was too flimsy to hold back the animals.
“We had an argument about it just last week and he just didn’t take care of his dogs properly. He could have prevented this,” the father, Armando Hernandez, told Detroit radio station WWJ.
The girl, Emma Valentina Hernandez, was taken to Children’s Hospital of Michigan and died from her injuries in what the Wayne County medical examiner ruled was an accident, reports The Detroit News.
Vicious Pitbulls Escape Again, Kill Second Dachshund
Massachusetts Man Reportedly in a Coma After Contracting Brain Infection From a Mosquito
A rare, sometimes fatal viral infection spread by mosquitoes has resurfaced in Massachusetts—and has likely sent at least one man into a coma. Over the weekend, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health reported that a local resident contracted the Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus. Dozens of communities remain at critical or high risk for the virus, and residents are being advised to stay indoors at night.
ARE YOUR PALM TREES HARBORING ROOF RATS?
There’s something inherently relaxing and beautiful about watching palms sway in the warm breeze. Palm trees grow well in Louisiana’s warm, humid climate as well, making them a seemingly perfect addition to your landscape.
Of course, humans aren’t the only ones with an eye for palm trees – other creatures love them too, but not necessarily for their aesthetics.
Roof rats, also known as fruit rats, love palms as a place to live. It’s possible that your lovely palm trees are actually harboring roof rats, and might really be encouraging vermin to invade your home.
What Are Roof Rats?
Call them what you want, roof rats, fruit rats, black rats, it all boils down to the same thing. These are the same rats that spread bubonic plague and fleas. They’ve been with humans for eons, and throughout that time, they’ve been less than ideal houseguests. Rats spread far more diseases than the frightening Black Death, though. Others include murine typhus, salmonella, rat-bite fever and leptospirosis to name only a few.
Where Do They Live?
Roof rats actually prefer to live in trees, particularly in palm trees...
Deadly Virus Found In Florida, Causes Brain Swelling From Mosquito Bites
The latest U.S. healthcare news warns the rapid spread of a deadly mosquito-borne virus known as Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) in Florida that causes brain-swelling.
According to reports, many sentinel chickens have tested positive for EEE.
The confirmed presence of the virus in Orange County’s sentinel chickens have raised “the risk of transmission to humans,” according to a statement by the county’s department of health.
Sentinels are fowls tested for the West Nile virus and EEE. Their blood samples may show the presence of the diseases but it is not necessary that they would suffer from the viruses.
The EEE virus spreading to humans via carriers like mosquitoes will lead to brain infection and swelling.
Maine Confirmed Its First Case of a Rare Tick-Borne Virus in Years. Here's What to Know About Powassan
Health officials have confirmed that an individual in Maine is sick with Powassan virus disease, marking the first time since 2017 that a person in the state has come down with the rare and serious tick-borne illness.
The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday that a southern Maine resident was hospitalized for Powassan encephalitis—brain inflammation associated with the virus—after showing symptoms in late June. The announcement did not specify the individual’s current condition, but health officils doctors to stay vigilant about the potential spread of Powassan throughout the summer and early fall.
Here’s what to know about the tick-borne Powassan virus disease.
WHAT IS EEE VIRUS? MOSQUITOES CARRYING DEADLY VIRUS FOUND IN NEW YORK AND MASSACHUSETTS
Health officials have confirmed the potentially life-threatening Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) virus has been found in mosquitoes in both New York and Massachusetts.
New York's Oswego County Health Department said on Tuesday that two mosquitoes taken from a field station at Toad Harbor Swamp in West Monroe tested positive for the EEE virus, Sycaruse.com reported.
On Tuesday, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health revealed EEE-carrying mosquitoes were identified for the first time this summer in mid-July, The Boston Globe reported. The bugs were found in the towns of Easton, Freetown, and Fairhaven, as well as the city of New Bedford.
Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang told CNY Central: "We are working closely with state Department of Health to monitor mosquito activity around the county and will take actions as deemed appropriate based on consultations with state and regional partners."
Salmonella outbreak tied to pig-ear dog treats expands to 27 states
Cases of Flesh-Eating Bacteria Are on the Rise as Summer Heats Up: Here's How to Stay Safe
SCIENTISTS SAY SKRILLEX STOPS MOSQUITOES FROM BITING
It sounds like an April Fools’ prank, but scientists say that music by dubstep star Skrillex can keep mosquitoes from biting.
If it’s a joke, it goes deep: the research is at the center of a paper published in the journal Acta Tropica last week, and the story has been picked up by the BBC News, HuffPo, and The Telegraph.
Assuming it isn’t an elaborate joke — and, given the timing, it’s hard not to be a little suspicious — the finding could suggest futuristic sound-based ways to keep disease-transmitting insects at bay.
Rising temperatures will help mosquitos infect a billion more people
Mosquitoes are unrelenting killers. In fact, they are among the most lethal animals in the world. When they carry dangerous viruses or other organisms, a bite can be unforgiving. They cause millions of deaths every year from such infectious diseases as malaria, dengue, Zika, chikungunya, yellow fever, and at least a dozen more.
But here's the really bad news: climate change is expected to make them even deadlier. As the planet heats up, these insects will survive winter and proliferate, causing an estimated billion or more new infections by the end of the century, according to new research.
Pests to eat more crops in warmer world
Insects will be at the heart of worldwide crop losses as the climate warms up, predicts a US study.
Scientists estimate the pests will be eating 10-25% more wheat, rice and maize across the globe for each one degree rise in climate temperature.
Warming drives insect energy use and prompts them to eat more. Their populations can also increase.
This is bound to put pressure on the world's leading cereal crops, says study co-author Curtis Deutsch.
Chagas Disease, Which Is Spread By The “Kissing Bug,” Is Spreading In The U.S., According To These Doctors
If the threat of bed bugs weren't enough to make you want to sleep in a full bodysuit complete with a hoodie and face mask, Chagas disease, which is spread by the "kissing bug," has been found in 28 states in the United States, a new report from the American Heart Association says, with a potential 300,000 Americans infected. And, similar to bed bugs, triatomine bugs bite at night. Unlike bed bugs, which are more of a physical nuisance and mental nightmare, kissing bugs do transmit disease. According to a research team based at Texas A&M University, 50 percent of triatomine bugs are infected with Chagas disease, a potentially life-threatening illness that's easily spread to humans.
These insects, which can grow to the size of a penny, are referred to as kissing bugs because they tend to bite unsuspecting sleepers on the face, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted on its website. "After they bite and ingest blood, they defecate on the person. The person can become infected if T. cruzi parasites in the bug feces enter the body through mucous membranes or breaks in the skin," the CDC explained.
WE HAVE NO IDEA HOW BAD THE US TICK PROBLEM IS
WHEN RICK OSTFELD gets bitten by a tick, he knows right away. After decades studying tick-borne diseases as an ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook, New York, Ostfeld has been bitten more than 100 times, and his body now reacts to tick saliva with an intense burning sensation. He’s an exception. Most people don’t even notice that they’ve been bitten until after the pest has had time to suck up a blood meal and transfer any infections it has circulating in its spit.
Around the world, diseases spread by ticks are on the rise. Reported cases of Lyme, the most common US tick-borne illness, have quadrupled since the 1990s. Other life-threatening infections like anaplasmosis, babesiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever are increasing in incidence even more quickly than Lyme. Meat allergies caused by tick bites have skyrocketed from a few dozen a decade ago to more than 5,000 in the US alone, according to experts. And new tick-borne pathogens are emerging at a troubling clip; since 2004, seven new viruses and bugs transmitted through tick bite have shown up in humans in the US.
Inside the vigilante group of New Yorkers who hunt rats at night
Rats aren't only a part of New York City’s underground — they're an inseparable part of its pop culture. There’s Master Splinter from the Ninja Turtles, Pizza Rat, and even Cannibal Rat. But for every celebrity rat, there’s another 250,000 to 2 million anonymous rodents living in the city — and the city health department is fighting to bring down.
Last year, three people in a Bronx city block made the news for contracting leptospirosis through rat urine. Only two survived.
This Mom Is Warning Parents About a Tick-Borne Illness After Her Son Came Home With a Bizarre Rash
Although the Summer months have plenty of fun aspects like camping trips and family vacations, there are also a number of risks that come with letting kids play outside. Danielle McNair, a mom from Georgia, is warning parents about a less commonly known danger, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, after her 5-year-old son, Mason, contracted the tick-borne bacterial infection.
Danielle told POPSUGAR that Mason's grandparents first found the tick in his belly button while Mason was taking a bath at their house in LaGrange, GA. Despite removing the tick, the bite site remained red and swollen. Danielle decided to take him to the doctor's just to be safe.
Is Tick Season Going to Be Bad in 2018? Eek! Tick Season Is Supposed to Be Especially Bad in the US This Year, Warn Experts
"His grandfather saw the tick on May 10; we're honestly not sure how long it was there because it was in his belly button and he was at his grandparents' house," said Danielle. "They actually removed the tick and made sure the head was out. He came home that day, and we noticed that it was very red and looked infected the following day."
Tick and Mosquito Infections Spreading Rapidly, C.D.C. Finds
The number of people who get diseases transmitted by mosquito, tick and flea bites has more than tripled in the United States in recent years, federal health officials reported on Tuesday. Since 2004, at least nine such diseases have been newly discovered or introduced into the United States.
Warmer weather is an important cause of the surge in cases reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to the lead author of a study in the agency’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
But the author, Dr. Lyle R. Petersen, the agency’s director of vector-borne diseases, repeatedly declined to connect the increase to the politically fraught issue of climate change, and the report does not mention either climate change or global warming.
Many other factors are at work, he emphasized, while noting that “the numbers on some of these diseases have gone to astronomical levels.”
Nature's wrath for interfering. 01-May-2018