Good night! Check out these awesome insects

“We try to emphasize that insects aren’t just icky or gross but are actually helpful and awesome.”

So says Kendall King, a CFAES graduate student and co-organizer of Insect Night, a free event for kids of all ages set for Saturday, July 13, in Wooster.

Firefly catching? Got it. Edible insects? Check. Other fun activities including a bug zoo, moth collecting, and guided walks that take you to see what’s out there in the night? Definitely. (Bring a flashlight.)

Read our recent press release.

Rising seas threaten Bangladeshi farmers

Rising seas caused by climate change are making soils salty, and that could force about 200,000 coastal farmers in Bangladesh inland as glaciers continue to melt into the world’s oceans. So says a recent study co-led by CFAES scientist Joyce Chen (pictured), as reported by Ohio State science writer Misti Crane. Read the story.

What to do about algal blooms in ponds

Algal blooms aren’t just a problem for high-profile bodies of water such as Lake Erie, they pose “serious, toxic threats in small ponds and lakes as well.” So says a recent Ohio State study.

Fortunately, on Wednesday, Sept. 19, at the Farm Science Review trade show, CFAES aquatic ecosystems specialist Eugene Braig will share details on why the blooms happen and what you can do to control them. His talk, called “Is My Pond Toxic? Managing Against Harmful Algal Blooms,” runs from 1-1:30 p.m. in the Review’s Gwynne Conservation Area. He’ll offer it again from 10:30-11 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 20.

See the full Gwynne schedule.

4 ways to visit Stone Lab

CFAES’s Stone Lab, located at Put-in-Bay on Lake Erie, is offering public tours of its Gibraltar Island, Aquatic Visitors Center and South Bass Island Lighthouse at various times and days this summer and fall. Find details and the schedules.

You also can visit Sept. 8, when the lab hosts its 20th annual Friends of Stone Lab Open House.

Especially in summer, Stone Lab is home to teachers, students and scientists exploring Lake Erie, its water, and what lives in and around it. (Photo: Stone Lab open house, 2016, Frank Lichtkoppler, Ohio Sea Grant, via Flickr.)

Watch: What people mean to water mean to fish

CFAES scientist Suzanne Gray explains her research connecting water quality, aquatic diversity and human activities in the video above. It’s her lightning-round talk (6:36) from CFAES’s Annual Research Conference. How do fish — from bluegills in the Scioto River, to walleyes in western Lake Erie, to cichlids in the Nile River basin — respond to rapid changes in their water caused by people?

Continue reading

Today: ‘To stand at the edge of the sea’

(Photo: Hawksbill turtle, iStock)

Today, June 8, we celebrate World Oceans Day.

Even in Ohio, of course, we’re connected to the oceans. By Lake Erie, the Ohio River, our local watersheds, farming practices, food choices, plastic use, energy sources, and on and on.

Why celebrate, honor and care for the oceans? Here’s the eloquent, wise Rachel Carson in her 1941 book Under the Sea-Wind: “To stand at the edge of the sea, to sense the ebb and flow of the tides, to feel the breath of a mist moving over a great salt marsh, to watch the flight of shore birds that have swept up and down the surf lines of the continents for untold thousands of years, to see the running of the old eels and the young shad to the sea, is to have knowledge of things that are as nearly eternal as any earthly life can be.”

CFAES’s celebrity snakes are back tweeting

Warm weather’s here, and the rattlesnake stars of the @TimberTweets feed — Jimbo, Hope, et al — are back, active and tweeting. Follow their rarely seen daily lives in the woods of southern Ohio. It’s all in the name of research being done by CFAES’s Peterman Lab. Fun fact (unless you’re a rodent or a tick): Timber rattlesnakes eat rodents that carry Lyme disease ticks. (Photo: iStock.)