News and Reviews

State Extension Bulletins on Biological Control

There are many short extension bulletins or other educational materials produced by various states that address biological control in the home garden. A few of these have been mentioned in previous issues. All are excellent resources, regardless of which state you live in. Reducing Insecticide Use in the Home Garden, Iowa State University Pm-1502. This 6 page publication discusses many options for managing insect pests in the home garden, including the use of beneficial insects.

Common Natural Enemies, Purdue University Coop. Ext. Service E-92. Four pages of color photos of predators, parasites and pathogens common in the Midwest, and accompanying text to explain the lifestyles of these three groups of natural enemies.

Beneficial Insects and Other Arthropods in the Yard and Garden, Colorado State University Coop. Ext. No. 5.550. Another 4-page fact sheet explaining predators and parasites, with line drawings of lady beetles, lacewings, hover flies, a damsel bug, minute pirate bug, ground beetle, wasps, tachinid fly and spider.

The Ohio State University Extension has several Home, Yard and Garden Fact Sheets on topics such as Ladybird Beetles (Publication no. HYG-2002-93) and Praying Mantis (HYG-2154-92).

Good Guys in the Insect World, produced by the University of Wisconsin Integrated Pest Management Program, are full color cards depicting various natural enemies commonly encountered in the Midwest.

The Biological Control Card Set offered by Colorado State University's Gillette Entomology Club contains 54 wallet-sized photos of various predators and parasites.

The Helpful or Harmful? Learn the Difference poster and flash cards are available from the University of Florida.

Insects and Spiders Helping Humans

The Colorado Foundation for Agriculture produced this Ag in the Classroom, A Colorado Reader workbook in cooperation with entomologists at Colorado State University. Insects and Spiders Helping Humans is designed to educate kids about insects and the ways they benefit us in agriculture and gardening. Eight pages of fun and games introduce subjects such as insect life cycles, biological control, spider biology, and pollination. A simple crossword puzzle lets the students use the new terms they've learned, and even math problems are incorporated, to figure out how long it takes Larry the Lacewing to develop or how many aphids Laura the Lady Beetle ate. Kids can listen to a "Late Night interview" by David Larvaman with a jumping spider, and search for beneficial insects in their habitats.

The accompanying teacher's guide provides additional information, defining the purpose of each topic and providing background information. Additional activities and topics are suggested, and the answers to the activities in the Colorado Reader are also provided. To contact the Colorado Foundation for Agriculture for more information about this reader, write to:

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