May 1, 2020

April is the time that we need to pay close attention to “true bugs” infestation in almonds. In entomological terms, true bugs or simply ‘bugs’ are the insects within a group (technically, sub-order) called ‘Heteroptera.’ All true bugs have a slender beak-shaped or “straw” like mouthparts (in technical terms – piercing and sucking type of mouthparts, see Fig. 1) to poke through the seeds or fruits and uptake the sap or juice. Although several small and large bugs may be present in almond orchards, in this article, we discuss economically significant large bugs – leaffooted bug, a few native stink bugs, and a new invasive stink bug.

Leaf-footed bug (LFB) adults are relatively large insects, brown, and about 1-inch long, with a narrow white zig-zag band across the back and have a leaf-like structure on the hind legs (Fig. 3G). LFB may not be a big issue in every almond orchard every year, but they can cause a severe economic loss when they occur. LFB adults overwinter outside but migrate...

While most Californians are staying home to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, California farmers, farmworkers and other agricultural professionals are out in the fields and packing houses working to produce food.

With increased demand for personal protective equipment, or PPE, to protect against COVID-19, these essential workers are facing shortages. Agricultural commissioners in 28 counties are hearing from farmers who are having trouble getting PPE for their employees and farmers in another 11 counties who are worried about running out of PPE in the next month or two according to a California Department of Pesticide Regulation survey.

Gloves, N95 respirators, coveralls and other gear that workers wear to protect themselves from COVID-19, pesticides, dust and other health hazards are in short supply as priority is given to health care workers during the pandemic.

To reduce the spread of COVID-19, workers may wear homemade face coverings, but for applying pesticides, they must wea...

April 11, 2020

In the last couple of days, I received several calls about flatheaded borer in walnuts from various clientele up and down in San Joaquin Valley. Flatheaded borer has become a new issue in several young and mature walnut orchards in the past few years. I know we want to know what insecticides can be used to manage this pest. Unfortunately, there have not been any studies investigating the efficacy of insecticides to control this pest in walnuts. At the moment, the best line of thinking to manage this pest is to know the symptoms of flatheaded borer damage in walnuts, and follow winter cultural practices (i.e., removing the infested and dead branches from the orchard) to reduce the pest incidence and damage. For more information about Pacific flatheaded borer, it's biology, and management options, read this article that I wrote for the West Coast Nut a few months ago.

This spring if you are looking for options to obtain your continuing education units (CEUs) and not sure where to get them, why not check out the online options that the UC Statewide IPM Program (UC IPM) has to offer. For license and certificate holders from the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) with last names beginning with the letters A through L, 2020 will be the year to renew.

UC IPM currently offers 16 online courses for DPR credit. Many of the courses are also accredited by the California Structural Pest Control Board (SPCB), Certified Crop Advisor (CCA), Western Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture (WCISA), or Arizona Department of Agriculture.

If you are looking for CEUs in the Laws and Regulations category, check out these courses:

  • Proper Pesticide Use to Avoid Illegal Residues (2.0 Pesticide Laws & Regs)

  • Proper Selection, Use, and Removal of Personal Protective Equipment (1.5 Pesticide Laws & Regs)

  • Providing IPM in Schools and Ch...

Summer is here, and we’re halfway through 2019 already! Why not get jump on finishing up your continuing education units by taking online courses from the UC Statewide IPM Program (UC IPM). If you are a license or certificate holder from the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR), and your last name begins with the letters M through Z, you should be receiving your renewal packet in August.

We’re excited to announce some changes.

  • In January, we switched all of our online courses to a located at This new system has extensive technical support, is easier to navigate, and is more stable than the old one. Note that the extension platform offers courses from all across the country, including several providers from California. Look for the UC IPM logo to be sure you are taking one of our courses.

  • We are pleased to announce that a was added to our citrus integrated pest management IPM series. Dr. Beth Grafton-Cardwell, a citrus IPM specialist...

May 4, 2019

Here is the link of the article that I wrote for the West Coast Nut magazine. Mostly, this article covers pest monitoring tools, and use of navel orangeworm mating disruption in nut crops. 

Here is the article that I wrote for UCCE San Joaquin Field Notes Newsletter (Nov. 2018 Issue, pg. 3-4) about the recent infestations of Pacific flatheaded borer in walnut orchards especially in the east side of San Joaquin and Stanislaus Counties.

Here, I have added an article published in the 'West Coast Nut' magazine (June Issue, 2018).

Brown marmorated stink bug in California isn’t news since it’s been present in urban areas for a while. The breaking news is that brown marmorated stink bug is starting to make its way into agricultural production areas. Unfortunately, wherever brown marmorated stink bug takes up residence, it causes severe crop losses.

Established populations have been reported in urban areas of 16 California counties. Monitoring in agricultural orchards and vineyards began when established populations were noticed in urban areas. In 2017, brown marmorated stink bug began to cause damage in agriculture, infesting commercial almond and peach orchards. This trend of infestation has been much more severe in 2018. Multiple almond orchards reported brown marmorated stink bug infestation, leading to yield loss in a few cases, in the northern San Joaquin Valley.

Brown marmorated stink bug can reach very high numbers, and since adults and all immature stages (except the first instar) can actively feed on many f...

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I'm an Integrated Pest Management Advisor aka 'IPM Advisor' with the University of California. My doctoral degree is from Virginia Tech. I have a strong background in the field and lab-based research and like to apply my skill and expertise to solve the real-world agricultural pest problems. The other major aspect of my job is the extension of knowledge and new information to the pest control professionals, growers, and allied stakeholders. I always enjoy working on research and extension interface.



University of California Cooperative Extension

Stanislaus County

3800 Cornucopia Way, Suite A

Modesto, CA 95358 

Ph: (209) 525-6800



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