Author: allen (Page 1 of 3)

Cohen’s Synchronous Online Courses (2020, 2021)

Evaluating live (synchronous, via Zoom) online courses. The current series of 3 courses {on 1) diets, 2) rearing systems operations, and 3) design and control of insect rearing systems} include more hours of instruction than workshops (60 hours vs. 40 hours of instruction); the courses cost less than the workshops {registering for all 3 courses costs $750 vs. more than $1000 for workshops}; the live online courses are spread over 3 months; there is time for interaction between participants and the instructor, including opportunity to ask questions between classes. The opportunity for feedback between participants and the instructor is in my opinion a very important part of the learning experience. For example, I have spent considerable time during this series of classes responding to questions and modifying the presentations to help amplify important points about the topics covered. In some cases, I have added through the online Moodle system (please see this website for further explanation of what I mean by referring to Moodle: https://docs.moodle.org/310/en/About_Moodle) many supplements and enrichments to add enriched content of the Zoom courses. For example, I have developed several tutorials that further explain concepts and procedures discussed in the live Zoom presentations. The flexibility of Moodle is virtually limitless, and I have been using it to deliver supplementary materials that allow participants to go into depth beyond what can be covered in class. The enrichment materials include many of my own tutorials, diagrams, images, and various other aids for learning about insect rearing science. This includes a major source of learning enrichment in the form of PDFs of open access papers that are sources of in depth information on rearing-related topics.

For more information about these classes, visit these links: 

Insect Diet Science and Technology

Insect Rearing Systems Operations

Design and Control of Insect Rearing Systems

Insect Rearing Education: trying to reach the rearing community one person at a time: workshops or courses?

I have been teaching insect rearing on a regular basis for the past 20 years, and I actually taught my first course in insect rearing (at the University of Arizona) in 1981 and again in 1989. Over all these years of teaching, I have taught workshops (initially at Mississippi State University, then in Tucson, and most recently here at North Carolina State University). I have also taught a number of in person courses as well as several online (both synchronous and non-synchronous), and I have taught both for college credit and not-for-credit courses. I point this out to convey the idea that I have considerable experience with several forms of rearing education; I have given it considerable thought I have devoted to insect rearing education over the past 40 years; and I feel that I have some constructive perspectives about how rearing education can become a highly useful investment of resources.

Workshops vs. Courses: I use the term “workshop” to mean a compressed teaching/learning effort in a subject such as rearing. I see workshops as lasting from 1 or 2 days to 5 days, with each day being devoted to intense or concentrated lecture, demonstration, and discussion. To my knowledge, the insect rearing workshops have been 5 days long, with about 8 hours per day dedicated mainly to lectures on topics such as diets, facilities, environment, genetics, quality control, microbial relations, and safety, with some variation of these topics such as special attention to air handling systems. Again, to my knowledge, rearing workshops include tours of onsite rearing facilities to give participants direct observation experiences. Workshops generally are taught by several experts in various topics of insect rearing, and the experts’ presentations are coordinated by an organizer. One very popular aspect of workshops is that the participants travel to the site of presentations, getting to meet other participants and instructors and experiencing luncheons, banquets, visits to local attractions. The meeting opportunities are during meals, at breaks, and in evenings between workshop days. I have heard testimony from participants that the meeting with fellow rearing professionals was an extremely valuable aspect of the workshop experience. 

Downsides of the workshop format are that participants must devote at least 6 days to attend and travel to and from the workshop site; besides the time investment, there is a considerable financial investment including workshop fees, travel and per diem expenses. In the time of COVID-19, the risks and hardships of travel are prohibitive for many people. Pedagogical Downsides include the pace of information processing—learning is not efficient when too much new information is processed within a short period of time. Besides the rapid pace of information transfer, workshops are limited in opportunities for interaction between participants and instructors.

The 2011 insect rearing class (first onsite, for-credit class in rearing science). Bottom row, left to right: John Hanley, Jona- than Cammack, Alana Jacobson, Rick Santangelo, Kelly Oten; top row (left to right): Allen Cohen, Andrew Ernst, Amy Lockwood, Michelle Meck, Nancy Brill, Heather Moscrip, and Micah Gardner

These thoughts about workshop limitations motivated me to offer courses in insect rearing for the past decade. In 2010, I offered a graduate seminar in insect rearing at North Carolina State University. The course was one hour a week for fifteen weeks, and most of the presentations were given by students on topics they selected. I felt that the seminar format lacked the scope and depth that was needed to convey the broad concepts and granular details of insect rearing. Therefore, in 2011, I offered the first 3-unit course in insect rearing where I lectured for 3 hours per week (for 15 weeks), and the students did projects where they reared insects of their choice and incorporated the materials taught in class. Students, working in groups of three, reared several species of insects that they were working with for their graduate studies or insects that lent themselves to gaining rearing experience (thrips, cockroaches, hornworms, lacewings, stink bugs, etc.), and they applied methods such as lipid, protein, and carbohydrate analysis, diet texture analysis, microscopic imaging studies, and other techniques that they could explore in my lab or in other facilities available at NCSU.

In the first (2011) class, there was no testing; grading was based on presentations as 1) posters, 2) PowerPoints, and 3) written papers in conventional scientific format. Despite the considerable time students spent with their team-based projects, I felt that learning was not as effective as possible due to the lack of testing. In subsequent offerings of the onsite rearing courses (in 2013, 2015, 2017, and 2019), I added two mid-term and one final exam, which consisted of take home, open-book essay questions. Because of the value of hands-on work, I retained the projects as part of the course requirements, and I offered opportunities for students to visit labs where they could learn about texture analysis (food rheology) and various analytical procedures in my lab. Student evaluations of these courses were very positive with many students writing that these courses were some of the best classes that they had taken and that every entomology student should take such a rearing course. Students, generally responded well to the course motto: “Know your insect.” Most students also got the point about the need to view insect rearing as a science, rather than an art.As a long-time educator, I was generally pleased with the onsite classes in insect rearing, but I was concerned that I was not able to reach the thousands of people who need and desire more opportunity to understand insect rearing in North America and world-wide. Therefore, I developed an online, non-synchronous course in rearing science and technology. I will make another post (soon to follow this one) on the further development of online courses.

Active vs. Passive Learning in Insect Rearing Education

While teaching my latest series of courses on insect rearing, using Zoom and Moodle, I have had some thoughts about the value of this teaching approach: online synchronous (= live) teaching. I am sharing some of these thoughts about insect rearing education.

Above: Professor Allen Carson Cohen showing silkworms to 2nd grade classes during a COVID-19 home-learning lesson.

I have been an educator for much of the past 55 years (I started teaching at Buena Park High School in California in 1965), and one of the most important lessons that I learned is that students who are actively involved in their education learn best. Several websites present information about the various ways people learn (for example: https://blog.prezi.com/the-four-different-types-of-learners-and-what-they-mean-to-your-presentations-infographic/). In that excellent website, Chelsi Nakano discusses these types of learning: Visual, Auditory, Reading/Writing, and Kinesthetic (learning by doing—actually physically performing the process that the student is trying to learn). She uses the acronym VARK to help us remember these “learning styles.” Dr./Ms. Nakano authored that blog in 2016, before the times of COVID-19, which makes the understanding of learning style all the more compelling for those of us who teach online courses!

Recognizing that optimal learning situations differ from person to person, and our population consists of these types of learners, dedicated educators must shape their educational approaches to these learning types. Besides the adjustment to the “VARK” learning styles, I have also learned that THE most important component of learning is the students’ motivation to learning, which translates to their involvement in their education process.

No matter how good the teaching resources are, the most important determinant of learning is each student’s commitment to learning. Along with commitment, there must be involvement in the learning process. As I try to convey the importance of heat transfer in diet processing, for example, I can talk about the process (auditory), show pictures of diet heating (visual), or ask students to go into the lab and make up diet (kinesthetic or learning by doing), the learning process is not effective unless the student has “bought into” learning about the heating process. Therefore, I try, as much as possible, to get students to anticipate outcomes, form hypotheses about the processes in question, answer questions about how factors such as heat transfer coefficients, mixing, temperature differentials, etc. influence the cooking process. 

In the next few days, I will be posting specifics about how I try to reach the students’ minds and hearts to help motivate their involvement—all through a distance-learning medium such as Zoom and Moodle.

December 19, 2020

Finishing the First Live, Online Courses

Yesterday (December 17, 2020) we finished the 6th out of 8 “synchronous” (= live) classes in the 3rd course in insect rearing systems. Our classes consist of small groups of professionals in insect rearing and some students who are especially interested in the science of rearing insects. As a long-time teacher, I have been very pleased with the dynamics of the live, Zoom-based classes. Through the “Share Screen” function, I can deliver lectures that consist of PowerPoint and videos, with some “live action” demonstrations.

For example, in yesterday’s lecture, I guided the students through an experiment based on design of experiments format (from JMP by SAS). We used the JMP full-factorial analysis program to set up an experiment with types of gelling agents and types of beans as variables that we planned to test.

Figure December 17, 2020. Manduca sexta neonates on new bean diet.

What was most rewarding for me (and I hope for the students) was that we were able to interactively (students, teacher, and JMP system) set up the experiment, so that over the next week, we can use the JMP system to interpret the outcome of this experiment. We formulated hypotheses about the outcomes (would agar be a superior gelling agent over carrageenan; would pinto beans be a superior nutrient source than soy beans?) More about this in my next entry.

Wonderful World of Silkworms

We have presented a PDF version of a talk that I gave to some classes of 2nd graders in North Carolina, during the time of COVID-19.

We presented pictures of silkworms in different stages of their life cycle (eggs–>larvae–>pupae (in their white cocoons)–>adults.

Silkworm Adults and Cocoons (pupae)

Latest Courses Completed

We are now completing the first 3 synchronous (live) online courses in insect rearing systems. The sequence began in October 2020 with Insect Diet Science and Technology (Course 1), then followed in November 2020 with Insect Rearing Systems Operations (Course 2), and finished in December 2020 with Design and Control of Insect Rearing Systems. All classes met two days a week for 2.5 hours and were featured with powerpoint lectures, videos, and discussions of all aspects of insect rearing from a “systems” point of view. The Zoom format provided an immediacy and involvement that static online formats do not provide.

Professor Cohen lectured and discussed with participants diets, feeding biology, insectary environments, genetics and epigenetics, microbial relations, in several established rearing systems. Rearing was treated constantly as a science-driven process, and Cohen illustrated (with involvement from participants) how to use design of experiments and statistically-based quality and process control to develop and better understand standard operating procedures (SOPs) to meet the needs of our insects in rearing systems. Cohen applied the “Know Your Insect” axiom to reinforce the power of careful observation, data mining, and analysis-based inquiry to help strengthen participants grasp of the complexities of the interactive components of rearing system.

We are now ready to launch the next set of three courses set for January, February, and March of 2021.

The Origins of Modern Insect Rearing: Drosophila

HEREDITY OF BODY COLOR IN DROSOPHILA T. H. MORGAN, 1912 Journal of Experimental Zoology PLATE 1 EXPLANATION OF FIGURES 1 2 A black female. 3 A brown female. 4 A yellow female. Normal or gray female (the outer marginal vein is slightly exaggerated in the figure). The contrast between the black, yellow, and brown flies is well brought out in the figures

HEREDITY OF BODY COLOR IN DROSOPHILA
T. H. MORGAN, 1912 Journal of Experimental Zoology
PLATE 1
EXPLANATION OF FIGURES
1. A normal female
2 A black female.
3 A brown female.
4 A yellow female.
Normal or gray female (the outer marginal vein is slightly exaggerated in
the figure).
The contrast between the black, yellow, and brown flies
is well brought out in the figures

These beautiful and historic drawings are from an early paper by the famous geneticist Thomas Hunt Morgan.  The many papers that he published helped establish modern-day genetics (not just insect genetics but ALL genetics).  These works and the other 150,000 papers on the various aspects of Drosophila genetics would not have been possible if it were not for the pioneering work of Delcourt, Baumberger, Guyenot, and other rearing pioneers.

Baumberger, J. P.  1917a. The food of Drosophila melanogaster Meigen.  Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America: 3: 122-126.

Baumberger, J.P.  1917b. Solid media for rearing Drosophila.  American Naturalist.  51: 447-448.

Delcourt, A. and E. Guyenot. 1910. The possibility of studying certain Diptera in a defined environment. Comptes rendus hebdomadaires des séances de l’Académie des sciences (0001-4036), 151, p. 255-257.

Guyenot, E.  1913a. A biological study of a Drosophila ampelophila Low fly I – The possibility of an aseptic life for an individual and the line.  Comptes rendus des séances de la Société de biologie et de ses filiales (0037-9026), 74, p. 97-99.

Infrastructure: The Evolution of Rearing Systems: Pink Bollworms

In the previous post (Nov. 26), I brought up the subject of insect rearing infrastructure, and I showed a sterling example of a rearing system that has served the world well: the Pink Bollworm Rearing System: run by the USDA, APHIS in Phoenix, AZ (USA).  I showed a picture of the “pinkie” diet that was being mass-produced in a huge, industrial scale twin screw extruder.  Although the process is now practiced routinely by the highly skilled professionals at the Pinkie facility, the ideas and techniques behind this smooth operation did not “like Athena spring full-blown from the head of Zeus.”  There was an evolution of the process that serves today to produce up to 25,000,000 pinkie adults per day for sterile release.

dsc_0608-diet-extruded-onto-chilling-beltSo here is the pink bollworm system running at very high efficiency.  But how did it get that way?  What incremental steps went into the rearing system: the diet, the environmental conditions, the containers, the sanitation procedures, the genetic management of a highly domesticated insect, etc.?

pinkie-diet-tableLet’s take the diet as an example of the evolution of a mass-rearing system.  The above table is from a paper by Edwards et al.  (1996) cited below.  The Edwards paper describes how the twin screw extruder became incorporated into the mass-rearing system (another huge and important series of steps), but the formulation of the diet itself came from a complex of incremental processes, all of which had to be vetted.  Looking at the components, we see for example toasted soy flour, wheat germ, and agar.  Each of these components has a special role in the diet, nutrition, feeding stimulation, antimicrobial function, texture, stabilization, etc.  But where did the idea of soy flour come from?  It turns out that tracking soy flour (and other soy products) in insect diets requires some complex detective work (which I will discuss in another post).  However, it appears that soy products were first used by Japanese researchers who were trying to develop artificial diets for silkworms to reduce dependence on fresh mulberry leaves (please see my other posts on silkworms).  The soy/ silkworm papers began to appear in the early 1960s, and later in the ’60s other papers appeared where soy components were reported by Western researchers on insect diets.  I will treat the background in soy in insect diets in another post dedicated to this special topic.

Wheat germ is another component that is prominent in the pinkie diet and in diets for hundreds of other insect species. I have treated the history of wheat germ in my text, especially in the 2nd edition, and I will discuss it on a special topics page in a later blog, but for now let me point out that wheat germ made an inauspicious debut in 1959 and then a much greater impact study reported in 1960 (please see Vanderzant et al. 1959 and Adkisson 1960) .  Once the vast potential of wheat germ became recognized it has been of central importance in thousands of published studies where the insects could not have been available were it not for the excellence of what germ as a diet component.

The last item that I will mention here is agar.  It seems that agar has been around forever in insect diets, but it actually became a centerpiece of insect diets starting with a Drosophila paper by Baumberger (1917) and Baumberger and Glaser 1917.  Prior to 1917, media were being developed for Drosophila based on bananas and yeast, but the Baumberger laboratory borrowed from the then burgeoning programs in microbiology where agar was becoming a standard of many kinds of microbial media.  The advent of agar in insect diets revolutionized the potential for rearing hundreds of species of insects, yet the Baumberger and Baumberger and Glaser papers are cited only a total of 2 times since 1917!  This lack of citation and lack of recognition of some of the most influential achievements in insect rearing is a central topic of many of my writings and teachings.

Finally, the story of many of the other innovations and advancements is told remarkably well by Stewart (1984).  Again, I will treat the pinkie story in more detail in near future pages, but for now please understand my point about how much incremental progress must take place and should be recognized in the insect rearing systems upon which so much depends!

References Cited Here:

Adkisson, P. L., E. S. Vanderzant, D. L. Bull, and W. E. Allison.  1960b. A wheat germ medium for rearing the pink bollworm.  J. Econ. Entomol.  53: 759-762.

Baumberger, J.P.  1917. Solid media for rearing Drosophila.  American Naturalist.  51: 447-448.

Baumberger, J.P. and R. W. Glaser.  1917.  The Rearing of Drosophila Ampelophila Loew on Solid Media. Science.  45: pp. 21-22.

Edwards, R. H., E. Miller, R. Becker, A. P. Mossman, and D. W. Irving.  1996.  Twin screw extrusion processing of diet for mass rearing the pink bollworm.  Transactions of the American Society of Agricultural Engineering.  39 (5): 1789-1797.

Stewart, F. D.  1984.  Mass Rearing the Pink Bollworm, Pectinophora gossypiella.  In Advances and Challenges in Insect Rearing.  E.G. King and N.C. Leppla, Eds.  USDA, ARS.  Pp. 176-187. New Orleans, LA.

Vanderzant, E. S., C. D. Richardson, and T. B. Davich.  1959. Feeding and Oviposition by the Boll Weevil on Artificial Diets.  J. Econ. Entomol.  52: 1138-1142.

 

Comments About Insect Rearing Infrastructure

dsc_0587-layer-cagesdscn0613-washed-egg-papers-drying-on-racks

I am currently writing a paper on infrastructure of insect rearing.  On this WeRearInsects.com site, I have already begun some of my discussion about rearing infrastructure and what our rearing profession needs to improve infrastructure.

One of the prominent examples of large scale and HIGHLY successful insect rearing is to be found in the various USDA, APHIS facilities, including the Pink Bollworm Rearing Facility in Phoenix, Arizona.

The photos in this post are from the Phoenix facility, currently directed by Eoin Davis, and previously directed by Ernie Miller and prior to that Dr. Fred Stewart.  The photos were provided by Dr. Hannah Nadel, a supervisory entomologist with USDA, APHIS.  These photos depict just a few features of the incredible mass-rearing system that is used by the staff of the USDA facility to produce millions of pink bollworms to be used for sterile insect technique (SIT) and other functions to help control these most devastating cotton pests.  The top left photo shows the adult rearing containers with PVC tubes collecting the scales, and the tops of the cages lined with paper for egg collection.  The top right photo shows the eggs being dried out after being treated with anti-microbial treatments, and the bottom photo shows the diet production where freshly made diet (diet with a red/pink dye to mark insects from the APHIS facility).  One of this laboratory innovations is the application of food science technology where the large twin-screw extruder is used to make large quantities of highest quality diet economically and safely.

dsc_0608-diet-extruded-onto-chilling-belt

This system is one of many USDA, APHIS facilities that deserves recognition and understanding by the rearing community, the entomological community, and the public at large, who are so well-served by these kinds of mass-rearing programs.  Thanks to these programs (including the sterile screwworm program, and several fruit fly control programs), billions of taxpayer dollars are saved, and our world is cleaner, and our agriculture is more efficient!

Reliability of Online Information: Questions of Trust and Critical Thinking

I have mentioned elsewhere on this site, that the purpose of the website, WeRearInsects.com, is to advance insect rearing through raising awareness of all rearing issues.  I have strived for the past 4 decades to contribute to science and entomology by doing research and teaching in insect rearing, and besides my writing books and book chapters, and papers, and besides my providing insect rearing workshops, and teaching classes online and in person, I have chosen to write a website to give myself the latitude to provide my ideas and the ideas of others all for the advancement of insect rearing and the people who practice this discipline.

However, I feel the need to express some thoughts and ideas regarding my site in the context of the site’s not being a peer-reviewed construct.

After the recent elections in the US, issues of truth, validity, and facts have come into the forefront more than ever before.  There have been many cases of fake news.  In fact, those of us who teach, have warned students for a long time that they need to be careful about “facts” from online inquiries.  I use the Internet many times per day to get a take on various subjects.  I have found that with subjects of which I have a base of knowledge, sometimes the information is excellent, and sometimes, it’s very inaccurate and can be misleading.  Therefore, my warning to students is that they use their greatest resource for getting an accurate (truthful?) picture is to use critical thinking and multiple source inquiries.  Part of the critical thinking that I urge is asking the question, “who is providing the information?” and “what does the information provider have to gain?”  Along with these critical thinking questions, if the student/scholar wants to add a layer of protection (a “truthfulness coating”), she or he can do some comparisons from various sources.  Often, however, the comparisons lead to the phenomenon where multiple sources say the exact same thing.  This parroting of information may well be a sign that the information should be further questioned, rather than being taken at face value.

So now, all this being said, what about the information that readers find on my website, which you are now visiting?  I have cautioned readers that this site presents my perspectives about insect rearing and related issues.  As much as I try to always be objective in my teaching, my scientific research, my reviewing other people’s works, and all other ways that I deal with insect rearing, I am still human and am bound to have slants or biases in the information and explanations that I present.  When I am writing papers or funding applications, I have reviewers who are scientific experts, and they can do some of the vetting.  Then, once the works are published, the scientific community can come along with criticism and commentary, especially if they have tested the information that I am providing.  This is why peer-reviewed works are given so much importance in the scientific community, especially where people are applying for funds, for jobs, or for promotions.

In the context of openness, I always encourage readers to offer opinions and to ask for clarification of my points.  However, to keep the site free of distractions, such as commercial messages or opinions that do not provide constructive substance to the ideas and information that I am putting forward, I screen the comments and questions, and I post all the ones that help what is in my opinion the advancement of insect rearing.

So please read my pages and posts critically, and give me feedback about what is helpful, what is incorrect, and what needs clarification.

Basic and Applied Science in Insect Rearing: Part I on Screwworms

Signed photo of E. F. Knipling who was honored by USDA, ARS in an article in Agricultural Research Magazine

Signed photo of E. F. Knipling who was honored by USDA, ARS in an article in Agricultural Research Magazine

One of the most heralded programs in entomology, possibly in science as a whole is the sterile insect technique (SIT) for suppressing or eradicating screwworms.  I present here a little background on the connection between insect rearing and application of SIT.  I start with a quotation from E. F. Knipling, who had long been a supporter of insect rearing as a science that supported other insect management programs such as SIT and biological control (unknown to more casual observers, Dr. Knipling was a GREAT supporter of biological control, including augmentation.  He wrote a book on the efficacy and possibilities of biological control by parasites, and he included predators and augmentation of both predators and parasitoids as an important potential for pest management on an area-wide basis.  He wrote:

“Mass rearing of insects is still a young science. With the help of insect geneticists, insect nutritionists, and insect behaviorists, insects might be reared under conditions that will make them equally, if not more, vigorous and more adaptable to the environment than the wild population. These improvements are likely to occur after further experiences and research.”  E. F. Knipling 1979

In the 2016 ESA National Meeting, Dr. Knipling’s work (for example, see the quotation from the ESA Newsletter announcement of Dr. James’ lecture*).  I have used in a paper that I wrote for American Entomologist the quotation from E. F. Knipling’s 1979 chapter to fortify my discussion of the pivotal role of insect rearing in entomological programs.  The quote reflects Dr. Knipling’s recognition of rearing as a science and that with the right kinds of input can lead to production of better quality insects that are more available for various programs.  It is also clear that Dr. Knipling had the vision that further “experiences and research” were needed to improve rearing science.

But for the current blog page, I wanted to fortify the point about basic science, in general.  I have cited a recent paper in Animal Behaviour (by Brennen, Clark, and Mock 2014) about the importance of basic science.  The authors clearly convey that basic science is of value far beyond the immediate scope or vision that most of us have initially. Brennen et al. cite the widely discussed treatment of Dr. Knipling’s work on screwworms, where Knipling was “awarded” a Golden Fleece Award for his having been funded for $250,000 to study on “The Sexual Behaviour of the Screwworm Fly,”  It has become a near-legendary example of near-sightedness by politicians like Senator Proxmire (D-Wisconsin from 1957-1989) that Knipling’s funding to study the mating behavior of screwworms, which was the foundation of SIT: that a female fly mates once, while males (including sterile males) mate multiple times.  Brennen et al. pointed out that the leverage from the 1955 Knipling study was amplified from $250,000 to $20,000,000,000 advantage in reduction of damages to US cattle.  Of course this economic and environmental advantage has continued to amplify itself due to the continuing positive effects of screwworm eradication throughout the US and Central America.  A further advantage of the sterile screwworm program is the demonstration (proof of principle) of SIT for tephritid fruit flies, pink bollworm, coddling moth, and several kinds of disease-transmitting biting flies.

*“Dr. Anthony A. James, a distinguished professor at the University of California, Irvine, delivered the Founders’ Memorial Award lecture at the 2016 International Congress of Entomology (ICE 2016). The subject of Dr. James’ lecture was Dr. Edward F. Knipling, winner of the World Food Prize (1992), the Japan Prize (1995), the FAO Medal for Agricultural Science (1991), the President’s National Medal of Science (1967), and many other awards.”

The Sexual Behaviour of the Screwworm Fly: One of the recipients of a Golden Fleece Award was E. F. Knipling for his research into the sex life of parasitic screwworm flies. Knipling developed the sterile male technique to eradicate this cattle pest, based on observations during the 1930s that male screwworm flies will mate with many females, while females will mate only once. He used this information to devise a male sterilization strategy using -rays. He released sterile males into the population and in a few generations completely eradicated this parasite. Knipling’s $250,000 grant from the Department of Agriculture led directly to a program estimated to have saved at least $20 billion for U.S. cattle producers. The sterile male technique is currently used as a standard eradication technique on many agricultural pests (Knipling, 2005; http://www.innovationtaskforce.org/docs/Screwworm.pdf).”

Brennen,

Knipling, E. F. 1979.  The basic principles of insect population suppression and management. USDA Agric. Handbook. 512.  659 pp.

*P. L. R. Brennan, R. W. Clark, and D. W. Mock.  2014.  Time to step up: defending basic science and animal behaviour.  Animal Behavior 94: 101-105.  (available at this site: http://www.bio.sdsu.edu/pub/clark/Site/Publications_files/animal_behaviour_commentary.pdf)
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