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Old 2021-05-05, 18:13   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
Here's a "topper." Some periodical cicadas spend 13 years underground. And 13 is another prime number!
If I understood the show that I heard correctly...
What is happening is a 4x +1 issue. At times weather/tree growth patterns will mess with he cicada's timing. Parts of broods will emerge off the normal cycle if trees "wake up" and then the weather "puts them back to sleep". The little buggies are drinking the trees' vital fluids. If they emerge off schedule they do so 4 or 8 years early. The first year is a given (they don't count that.) Then every 4 cycles of the tree, they count.
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Old 2021-05-07, 01:40   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncwilly View Post
If I understood the show that I heard correctly...
What is happening is a 4x +1 issue. At times weather/tree growth patterns will mess with he cicada's timing. Parts of broods will emerge off the normal cycle if trees "wake up" and then the weather "puts them back to sleep". The little buggies are drinking the trees' vital fluids. If they emerge off schedule they do so 4 or 8 years early. The first year is a given (they don't count that.) Then every 4 cycles of the tree, they count.
You might want to look at The 2021 Periodical Cicada Emergence (Brood X) (which also has links to "stragglers"). The striking thing about periodical cicadas is the extreme synchrony of each "brood." Most "stragglers" in a brood's area emerge one year "off cycle" (before or after), with four years "off cycle" (before or after) being next most common.

In addition, this University of Michigan page, even though it was last updated ten years ago, has some interesting information on the seven Magicicada species. There are "species pairs" of 17- and 13-year cicadas which seem to differ mainly in geographic distribution and length of development. The 13-year "broods" are generally more southerly than the 17-year broods.

Also, Answers to some common questions about periodical cicadas may be of interest.

If those aren't enough, the Cicada Mania site will probably fill the gap.
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Old 2021-06-24, 11:44   #69
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Western drought brings another woe: voracious grasshoppers
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BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) -- A punishing drought in the U.S. West is drying up waterways, sparking wildfires and leaving farmers scrambling for water. Next up: a plague of voracious grasshoppers.

Federal agriculture officials are launching what could become their largest grasshopper-killing campaign since the 1980s amid an outbreak of the drought-loving insects that cattle ranchers fear will strip bare public and private rangelands.
<snip>
To blunt the grasshoppers' economic damage, the U.S. Department of Agriculture this week began aerial spraying of the pesticide diflubenzuron to kill grasshopper nymphs before they develop into adults. Approximately 3,000 square miles (7,700 square kilometers) in Montana are expected to be sprayed, roughly twice the size of Rhode Island.

Agriculture officials had seen this year’s infestation coming, after a 2020 survey found dense concentrations of adult grasshoppers across about 55,000 square miles (141 ,000 square kilometers) in the West.

A 2021 grasshopper "hazard map" shows densities of at least 15 insects per square yard (meter) in large areas of Montana, Wyoming and Oregon and portions of Idaho, Arizona, Colorado and Nebraska.

Left unaddressed, federal officials said the agricultural damage from grasshoppers could become so severe it could drive up beef and crop prices.
<snip>
The grasshoppers targeted include roughly a dozen of the hundreds of native species in the West. Drought benefits them in part because it lessens exposure of grasshopper eggs to deadly parasites that need moisture, said Chelse Prather, a University of Dayton insect ecologist.

This year’s outbreak will peak in roughly two months, when the insects reach 2 to 3 inches (5 to 7.6 centimeters) in length and become so prevalent they’ll start to eat more plant matter than cattle can, Prather said.

The grasshoppers start to die down when there’s nothing left to eat, Prather said, "but at that point they’ve probably already ... laid their eggs for next year."
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Old 2021-07-10, 13:21   #70
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Bug experts seeking new name for destructive gypsy moths
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Bug experts are dropping the common name of a destructive insect because it's considered an ethnic slur: the gypsy moth.

The Entomological Society of America, which oversees the common names of bugs, is getting rid of the common name of that critter and the lesser-known gypsy ant. The group this week announced that for the first time it changed a common name of an insect because it was offensive. In the past they've only reassigned names that weren't scientifically accurate.
<snip>
The moths are invasive and destructive critters in the caterpillar stage. They have a voracious appetite that can denude entire forests of leaves, said University of Illinois entomologist May Berenbaum, a past society president.

The moths likely got their name because as larvae they have hair with small air pockets that act like balloons allowing them to float for miles, wandering like the group of people they were named after, Berenbaum said. Another theory is that male adult moths have a tan color that could be similar to Romani people.

The Entomological Society is now on the hunt for a new common name, a process that will take months, Smith said. Until then, even though it's a mouthful, Smith said the moths should be called by their scientific name, Lymantria dispar or L. dispar.

Berenbaum — who has written about weirdly named plants, animals and gene mutations — said given the moths' destructiveness, she and other would have some ideas for a descriptive new name.

"You're not allowed to use obscenities," she said, "so that's out."
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Old 2021-07-10, 14:25   #71
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Bug experts didn't live in Romania (or eastern Europe, more general).
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Old 2021-07-10, 15:30   #72
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Originally Posted by LaurV View Post
Bug experts didn't live in Romania (or eastern Europe, more general).
Never mind "experts." I'm sure there are descriptive common names for Lymantria dispar where it's native. Maybe "fuzzy tree-defoliator" or something like that (in English translation). Such a descriptive common name would be more interesting than "Eurasian tussock moth" IMO.

I don't know about the "gypsy ant."

EDIT (update): After doing some more reading online, I found the following about the "gypsy ant." Great minds...

The gypsy ant is dead! Long live the itiner-ant!
Quote:
Two weeks ago, entomologist Terry McGlynn wrote a blog post about a species of ant he named after conducting field research in the summer of 2000. These ants are common in Central America, and behaved in an unusual way, moving back and forth among different nests in their territory but only occupying one at a time. Based on this trait, nineteen years ago McGlynn proposed to the official board of insect names that the species be commonly called "gypsy ants," using an ethnic slur for the Roma people.
<snip>
He put out an open call for names to send to the common names committee, and the internet did not disappoint: wanderlust ants, ranger ants, ambu-lants, and itiner-ants were all suggested. Paleoecologist Jacquelyn Gill suggested that McGlynn find out what local indigenous people call the ant.
<snip>

Last fiddled with by Dr Sardonicus on 2021-07-11 at 00:50 Reason: As indicated
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Old 2021-07-11, 06:28   #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
Wow, that website is a gem. Thanks for sharing it. Kinda ifls or scienceallert, but without lots of advertising and stupidity they show in the recent times.

Now, my post was a joke, not much about moths as it was about gypsies. Almost everybody in my country become antiziganists sometimes in their lives, for periods, or for the rest of their lives, and bad things (like your moth) do have gypsy-related names, quite frequently. But good things too can have gypsy-related names, especially when it comes to music, roaming, living free. Now, that's a pity a whole population and a nice culture comes to be characterized by looking at few bad elements, but that is another story. People know the gypsies like the guys who went west after the communist curtain fell, and were sleeping on the streets in Italy shitting at the corners of the street, terrorizing strawberry farmers' villages in Spain, eating the swans on the lakes in public parks in Frankfurt, or stealing satellite antennas with lassos in Austria when Germans, fed up with them, packed them in trains and sent them back east. These things were reported in press around the world, and that is how people now gypsies. But most of them are not like that. They are normal people, like me and you, and the idiots who gave the bad fame to the name are not really representative.

Kind of similar situation here in Thailand with Chinese tourists who come here and disrespect local culture and people. Local population, including some of my colleagues, disapprove of them, even hate them, because they talk loud (which is a bad behavior in Thai culture, they all try to talk "quietly", if there are 5 people in my office all talking at the phone in the same time, you could still hear a fly flying there - well, not really, but you got the idea), and you always have the feeling they (the Chinese) will start fighting in the next seconds (but they won't, it is the tonal language what gives you this feeling, they maybe just telling jokes), and because the local newspapers have racist articles about some tourists washing their feet in the sink in some toilet in the airport (again, in Buddhist culture, feet are unclean because they walk in the dirt, see my former posts about touching children's heads), or getting drunk and peeing behind some Buddha statue. And this makes a bad fame for Chinese in general, local people come to think that all Chinese are bad, uneducated, disrespectful, careless, etc. Every time when we discuss about it, I try to make my colleagues understand that the tourists who come here are not representative for the Chinese population. These are just few idiots who have no situation there and try to escape somewhere else, or some snobs with money who believe that all the world revolves around them, who behave the same in their country too, and are hated there too. Putting all the Chinese in the same basket with these few snobs is detrimental for the most mass of the people, here or there, and for tourism in general. Normal people there, which are representative for Chinese culture, tradition, etc, they can't afford to travel somewhere else in the world. I know, because I was working there some years, and I liked China, the people are hospitable and kind in their hearts, they will respect you if you respect them, they will feed you if you need, without expecting much in return, and they don't eat swans and don't shit at the corner of the street.

Funny is that before the '90s, some western countries criticized Romania for the policy for (or against) gypsies, like they were forcefully concentrated in some neighborhoods, where new apartment buildings were built for them (but they were living in tents outside of apartment buildings because that's the life style they like), and they were not allowed to roam and terrorize the local villages (they used to install their tents nearby some village, steal chickens or goods, scaring or sometimes beating local people, etc). And we didn't have leaders strong enough to tell western countries what Deng told Carter when he visited US and Carter reproached him that Chinese people are oppressed and not free to travel, "do you want them? no problem, tomorrow I give passports to all of them". I had some gypsy friends (both sexes) and some gypsy colleagues in the university who I wouldn't exchange for a hundred Romanians, but I grown in a town where about 10% to 20% of the people were gypsies and like 30% lipovans (all lipovans to the last were in vegetable farming business and they lived in their own way, follow their own religion, majority of them were rich and good people, and some of their kids were really smart, my class of about 35 pupils from the first to the eight grade was 3 to 5 gypsies, 15 to 20 lipovans, and 10 to 15 romanians, but parallel classes had no gypsies and mostly romanians, the teachers were kinda racist where they split the classes initially, this is a long story which I may tell sometime in the future). So, in that town, most people were afraid to go in the gypsy neighborhoods, and women avoided walking on the streets in the night in ANY neighborhood. And all this bad fame was caused just by few "elements" who were usually alternating between being free and being in jail or correction facilities periodically. The most of the others were normal people, like you and me, trying hard to live day by day during the communist regime. We, like children, went there to play with local kids sometime, without our parents knowing it. When parents found out, they were like "don't go there", "don't eat from them", "don't drink from them", but in about 10 years or more, I got bullied or beaten two times (by other kids, but I wasn't a saint either), and never caught some "strange" disease.

In the mountains where my maternal grandmother lived there was a village of gypsies who were metal workers. They were extracting the metal by themselves, give part to the government, etc. They had their own laws and rules, and their own bulibasha (king), like you see in the movies. They barricaded the roads in the night, so nothing could pass that area, and removed the barricades every morning. They were all rich, but still living in very rustic conditions, and if you happen to be caught there you could only leave the village well fed and half drunk. You could not make business there unless you drank with everybody. Their wine or tzuica (romanian version of whiskey), of which they were very proud, and it was flowing "for free". Or well... for good business and collaboration in the future, haha. Their main business like metal workers was making buckets and alembics (of course, to make tzuica!), which they sold in whole the area. This was during the communist area. The communism didn't climb so high in the mountains . My uncles (all in the timber trade) knew all of them by names and I was there few times with them looking for business. I didn't have any trouble playing with their kids (close to my age at the time) or chasing their girls (most of the times without much success, of course, they were more skilled than me, the city boy, at that age, haha).

So, in short, we have lots of jokes and stories about gypsies. We may tell them sometimes. Some of them may sound racist, but there is nothing racist in them. In the last years there is a big movement for gays, black people, Jews, women, etc. emancipation, and gypsies couldn't stay apart. But if you ask me, such movement is similar to the communist joke with the communism machine being broken, because the gasoline didn't go to the engine anymore, it went to the horn, i.e., just a big propaganda. For us they are all people. Unless of course, they ring my doorbell to convince me to switch to their religion/color/sex/whatever. Those, I will kick in the butt with a great pleasure.

So, in summary, with all this propaganda, expect in the future to eliminate all the attributes which could be related to any of the mentioned "traits", from the scientific names. No more gypsy moth, chinese beetle, argentinean ant, colorado bug, american whatever...


-------------
sorry for hijacking the thread, if it is too much for the topic, then you could move the post to my blog

Last fiddled with by LaurV on 2021-07-11 at 07:58
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Old 2021-07-11, 12:56   #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LaurV View Post
<snip>
So, in summary, with all this propaganda, expect in the future to eliminate all the attributes which could be related to any of the mentioned "traits", from the scientific names. No more gypsy moth, chinese beetle, argentinean ant, colorado bug, american whatever...
<snip>
It seems that folks are actually rethinking "officially" using places of origin in common names for invasive or pestiferous organisms. I don't have any problem with such usage (assuming it is accurate), especially if it helps distinguish non-native (alien) species from similar native species. The following insect names come to mind:

Asian longhorn beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis) - introduced into the US in wooden pallets ("skids") containing their wood-boring grubs. Infested trees are goners.

Colorado potato beetle - (Leptinotarsa decemlineata) - Became an agricultural pest only after potatoes were introduced as an agricultural crop.

European Cabbage White (Pieris rapae) - Introduced European butterfly. Pale green caterpillars known as "cabbage worms" infest and spoil cabbage, broccoli, etc. Also displaces native white butterfly species.

Formosan termite (Coptotermes formosanus) - Apparently originally native to southern China, introduced to Taiwan, then to the US and elsewhere.

Japanese beetle (Popillia japonica) - Native to Japan and E Asia. Introduced into US before inspection of nursery stock was mandated. Grubs damage plant roots, adults damage leaves and flowers.

In the plant kingdom, we have

Russian Thistle AKA tumbleweed (scientific names Kali tragus FKA Salsola tragus, Salsola pestifer etc). Place of origin accurate, but "thistle" is a misnomer, given because of the prickly nature of the mature plant. Formerly classified in Chenopodiaceae (goosefoot family), since reclassified into Amaranthaceae (Amaranth family). Tumbleweeds can fill roadside ditches, pile up against houses up to their roofs, and get caught up in whirlwinds, including "fire tornadoes."

Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) AKA creeping thistle. The "Canada" is a misnomer because the plant is actually of European origin. New England colonists blamed its appearance on French traders from Canada, and the name stuck. The name "creeping thistle" is apt. It spreads by underground runners and forms large colonies.

Last fiddled with by Dr Sardonicus on 2021-07-11 at 13:00 Reason: xingif optsy
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Old 2021-07-11, 13:17   #75
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Re possibly PC renaming of ants with several residences: nomad; circuit (as in circuit rider or circuit judge); patrol; restless; berniesanders

It seems the humans sometimes called gypsy, Roma, or Tigan disagree on what to be called. https://www.pri.org/stories/2011-12-...erided-gypsies

Does this mean Cher needs to rewrite/rerecord her song?

Last fiddled with by kriesel on 2021-07-11 at 13:43
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Old 2021-07-11, 14:41   #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kriesel View Post
Does this mean Cher needs to rewrite/rerecord her song?
Yes. Broadway has renamed one of their traditions: https://www.playbill.com/article/new-name-revealed-for-broadway-gypsy-robe-ceremony
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Old 2021-07-11, 16:23   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Sardonicus View Post
In the plant kingdom, we have

Russian Thistle AKA tumbleweed (scientific names Kali tragus FKA Salsola tragus, Salsola pestifer etc). Place of origin accurate, but "thistle" is a misnomer, given because of the prickly nature of the mature plant. Formerly classified in Chenopodiaceae (goosefoot family), since reclassified into Amaranthaceae (Amaranth family). Tumbleweeds can fill roadside ditches, pile up against houses up to their roofs, and get caught up in whirlwinds, including "fire tornadoes."

Canada thistle (Cirsium arvense) AKA creeping thistle. The "Canada" is a misnomer because the plant is actually of European origin. New England colonists blamed its appearance on French traders from Canada, and the name stuck. The name "creeping thistle" is apt. It spreads by underground runners and forms large colonies.
Japanese knotweed is an evil invasive in the UK;: an infestation is required by law to be notified to the authorities so that it can be terminated with extreme prejudice.

Pseudosasa japonica can be a real bugger (a technical term in horticulture) if not kept firmly under control. Sasa kurilensis is similar. Neither of these two are likely to be renamed because botanical taxonomy is extremely hard to change without very good reason.
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