Penn State Ag Science Magazine

Penn State Ag Science: Spring/Summer 2017


Penn State Ag Science Magazine

Penn State Ag Science: Spring/Summer 2017


The New Extension
Penn State Extension changes how it does business to give customers what they want, when they want it, and how they want it.
Microbiome: Our Invisible World
New high-throughput sequencing technologies uncover a world of interacting microorganisms.
Up By the Roots
Jonathan Lynch's lab is addressing global famine with a combination of old-school methods and modern innovation.

Up Front

A New Model
Food production may not need to double by 2050.

The Interview

Interview: Tom Davis
Hired in October, Tom Davis is the first new manager of the creamery in 30 years. Tom fills us in on his dream job, the future of the Creamery, and his favorite dessert.

College Briefs

Attitude Goes a Long Way
Brook trout behaviors could help the animals adapt to habitat change.
Farmers Protecting Water Quality
A survey of nearly 7,000 farmers in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed finds that many have voluntarily implemented water-quality best management practices.
Bed Bugs Beware
A new fungal biopesticide is achieving mortality rates from 95.5 to 99 percent within 14 days.
The New Migration
Climate change is driving people to urban areas.
Greening the HUB Roof
Julianna Razryadov, a graduate student in horticulture, is studying the benefits of using native plants to boost the sustainability and aesthetics of green roofs.
Devastating Forest Fires Likely to be Repeated
The fast-moving, wind-whipped blazes that burned more than 150,000 acres, killed 14 people, and damaged 2,400 structures in the Smoky Mountains in Tennessee last year may be a portent of things to come, warns Professor of Forest Ecology and Physiology Marc Abrams.
A Home for Microbiome Research
Penn State creates a new center for the study of microbial interactions.
Sharpen Your Pencils!
Put your notebooks away, turn off your cell phones, and test your knowledge.
A Growing Partnership
An undergraduate internship plants the seeds of collaboration.
What's Your Footprint?
A new tool developed by Heather Gall, assistant professor of agricultural and biological engineering, and three undergraduate students can help consumers calculate their emerging-contaminant footprint.
On the Scent
Following a new lead on the fungus that causes white-nose syndrome.
They Speak For the Trees
Faculty and staff in the college are conducting research on Pennsylvania's trees with a goal of saving ecologically and economically important species teetering on the brink of extinction.
Flu Season
Avian flu threatens to re-emerge during waterfowl migration periods.
Insect Health Update
Neonicotinoids and honey bee health
Genetically engineered crops: Are they safe?
In terms of their risks to human health and the environment, genetically engineered (GE) crops are no different from conventional crops, according to a report published last year by the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
Growing Room
New facilities spawn fresh opportunities for mushroom research.
Considering Cattle
Matt Thomas, professor of entomology, and Jessica Waite, postdoctoral scholar in entomology, published a paper in the January 16 issue of Scientific Reports in which they examine the relationship between mosquitoes and cattle on human malaria occurrence.

Expert Advice

Landscaping Tips for Healthy Waterways
Runoff from our lawns and gardens can cause harmful algae blooms that deplete oxygen and kill fish each year. The following tips can help you keep our waterways clean and healthy.
Herbs at the Ready
Container gardening can give you fresh herbs, such as parsley, rosemary, tarragon, and basil, at your fingertips.
The Rules of Attraction
With a little planning, you and your garden can provide food for hummingbirds from spring to fall.
Can I Lick the Spoon?
Remember baking chocolate chip cookies or brownies as a kid and licking the spoon afterward?
Ditching Your Paper Records?
For field crop production, having easily accessible records is essential.

In The News

Kenya's croton tree touted as new biofuels crop.
Mike Jacobson, professor of forest resources, says seeds from the croton tree could provide a good source of sustainable biofuel for east Africa.
Simple mosquito killers are the new buzz in Gates Foundation's malaria battle.
Matt Thomas, professor and Huck Scholar in Ecological Entomology, says simple methods of killing malaria-spreading mosquitoes are needed while more complex technologies are being developed.
The 100 greatest innovations of 2016.
Yinong Yang, professor of plant pathology, developed a mushroom resistant to browning, and it was named the forty-first greatest innovation of 2016.
What's up with eggs from vegetarian hens?
Paul Patterson, professor of poultry science, said very few hens are given feed containing animal products, as was done more often in the past.
A bee mogul confronts the crisis in his field.
Jim Frazier, professor emeritus of entomology, says finding the causes of honey bee decline is complicated.

Then and Now

The Armsby Respiration Calorimeter
The Armsby Respiration Calorimeter was proposed in 1898, opened in 1902, and served a vital role in animal and human nutrition experiments at Penn State through the 1960s.

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