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DPI Diary

June 2, 2014

A weekly digest of social media activities at FDACS-DPI

FDACS bee experts instruct at Caribbean Beekeeping Conference

David Westervelt, chief of the FDACS-DPI Apiary Section, and Gary Van Cleef, apiary inspection supervisor traveled to the U.S. Virgin Islands for the Seventh Caribbean Beekeeping Congress and Second Annual Caribbean Bee College. They joined professors from the University of Florida and members from the Association of Caribbean Beekeepers Organizations, lecturing and conducting workshops for active and aspiring beekeepers.

This year’s event was held at the University of the Virgin Islands, Kingshill, St. Croix, United States Virgin Islands. The first college took place in 2013, drawing nearly 100 participants from 12 countries.

Read the coverage by the St. Croix Source, here.

Giant African Land Snail detector dog teams now at work in Miami

DogGraduationTwo22May14Black labs Raider and Bear and their handlers were sniffing out giant African land snails in Miami this week. The dogs are trained to detect the GALS’s scent–their skills enable them to distinguish GALS from other snail species–and can detect GALS the human eye will miss. The dogs are mainly used in areas where GALS have been found in the past, but where the snail population numbers are very low. More here.

DPI Scientist hosts AgScience Café

DPI’s Dr. Gary Steck trecked to Tallahassee to host the AgScience Café for FDACS employees. Dr. Steck described his fruit fly explorations in South America, focusing on a trip up the Piñipiñi river. Dr. Steck is a taxonomic entomologist and is curator of diptera and minor orders at the Florida State Cllection of Arthropods training of Florida Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Agriculture personnel, especially in fruit fly detection; oversight of the FSCA Research Associate Program.  The AgScience Café is a monthly series open to all FDACS staff to share scientific information.

On the alert for the Asian Longhorned Beetle

alb_photoThe Asian Longhorned Beetle remains a serious threat to hardwood trees in the U.S. and, although it has not been detected in Florida to date, is considered a potential threat to the Sunshine State. As the weather turns warmer the ALB starts to emerge from trees. Our partners at Don’t Move Firewood posted this photo of an emerging beetle.

Here’s something worth a look.

The Weather Channel’s Dave Hackenburg taped this quick video on bees, beekeeping and weather:  http://wxch.nl/1ko93Gp

Hurricane Season is approaching

HurricaneJust a couple of days remain until the beginning of hurricane season. It starts June 1 and with 1,197 miles of coastline, no areas of Florida are immune to devastating hurricanes and severe weather related to them. Florida’s Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday, May 31 through June 8, allows tax-exempt sales of items related to hurricane preparedness. Click here for a list of qualifying items: http://dor.myflorida.com/dor/taxes/pdf/hurricanelist.pdf

Supporting Florida’s alligator industry

Finally, Fresh From Florida posted a guest blog describing a project that brought artists together with alligator farmers and harvesters. Interesting! Check it out here: http://bit.ly/1kc2xlO

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