Stemming the Sting of Fire Ants: Pest Management Strategies with USDA's David H. Oi
Play • 25 min

It just takes one sting to make sure your eyes are on the ground in fire-ant country. Walking across a field in the southern United States often includes a quick scan for any telltale nest mounds. More than memorable, fire ants also are problematic for agriculture. Guest David H. Oi fills in the background and tells listeners

  • Why they're considered invasive ants and how they came to North America;
  • What's their ecology, including prey, habitat, and possible predators; and
  • What control methods, past and present, are used by the USDA as well as potential future measures.

Research entomologist David H. Oi opens up the world of the fire ant for listeners, taking us along their "small and sneaky" paths. These ants are not native to North America, but made their way here in the '30s via imported goods arriving in Mobile from South America. They spread rapidly and easily, which is part of the reason they're considered invasive: the ability to out-compete native species and lack of any formidable predator, resulting in a negative impact. They USDA therefore gave them this special designation because of public health and agricultural concerns.

Fire ants are omnivorous, so their food choices are plenty, and range from young quail to baby sea turtles to agricultural crops. Dr. Oi describes the USDA mitigation history, from early pesticides found to be harmful to mammals to current methods available at any local garden store. He also shares biological measures, including a range of insect pathogens. He describes a particular microsporidium scientists spread through colonies, which slowed the queen's reproductive capabilities with some measureable impacts. But Dr. Oi says it's no "silver bullet," so listen in as he describes other creative ventures he and his colleagues are developing to stop the sting and save the crops.

For more about their work, see the USDA's Imported Fire Ants webpage. Available on Apple Podcasts:

Vertical Farming Podcast
Vertical Farming Podcast
Harry Duran
S2E26: s2e26 Sepehr Mousavi - Sustainability, Innovation and the Future of AgTech
Episode Summary Join Harry Duran, host of Vertical Farming Podcast, as he welcomes to the show speaker, futurist and Chief Sustainability Officer at SweGreen, Sepehr Mousavi. Sepehr is a sustainability strategist, innovation catalyst and a passionate futurist with an international and multicultural background. His organization, SweGreen, is the number one AgTech company in Sweden and is revolutionizing the vertical farming industry by providing futuristic, smart and circular solutions for controlled-environment growing systems. In this episode, Harry and Sepehr discuss Sepehr’s unique background and vertical farming origin story. They delve deep into the concepts of symbiosis, smart real estate solutions and the importance of Research and Development. Finally, Sepehr speaks to the importance of educating the world on vertical farming and what excites him the most about the future of SweGreen and the AgTech industry. Episode Sponsor Ceres Greenhouse Solutions Key Takeaways 03:22 – Harry welcomes to the show Sepehr Mousavi, Chief Sustainability Officer and Founding partner at SweGreen, who discusses his background and roots, what brought him to Sweden and how he got involved in vertical farming and AgTech 11:38 – What Sepehr learned from his time at Plantagon, one of the early pioneers in AgTech 20:15 – Sepehr expounds on the concept of symbiosis 24:18 – Sepehr talks about farming as a service 30:47 – Sepehr expounds on SweGreen’s smart real estate solutions 34:37 – The importance of Research and Development (R&D) 36:41 – Sepehr speaks to why he identifies as a futurist, where he looks for inspiration and what excites him about the future of AgTech 44:42 – The importance of educating consumers and those looking to enter a career in AgTech or vertical farming 47:46 – Sepehr shares the SweGreen initiatives he’s most excited about 53:11 – Harry thanks Sepehr for joining the show and let’s listeners know where they can connect with him  Tweetable Quotes “If you’re going to scale down the innovation from a city function to something that could feed neighborhoods, then you could look at smart buildings and how you could build up symbiosis.”(21:09) “The logistics of food is very difficult to handle.”(25:28) “From the very beginning I was very interested in history. And what I learned from history is that if you look at the process of how we got here, you could speculate where we’re going to end up in the future because we always repeat these evolutionary trends.”(37:52) “When I look at our farmers today, they are people in their twenties coming to work in their hoodies, listening to their hip-hop music, planning things on their iPad and then doing the practical work. And this is the future of our farmers.” (46:07) “If you talk about how we conceive food as a concept that ends up in our shopping bags, people have got more used to technology solving the issue. So the reaction is ‘wow, this is really cool,’ rather than, ‘I’m a skeptic.’”(51:02) Links Mentioned SweGreen Website Sepehr’s LinkedIn Plantagon Website Sepehr’s Blog 🎙️🎙️🎙️ Podcast Production and Marketing by FullCast: See for privacy information.
58 min
Future of Agriculture
Future of Agriculture
Tim Hammerich
FoA 247: How to Stop Herbicide-Resistant Weeds
The question of “what are the real problems in agriculture that need to be solved?” is one we ask often here on this show. If you ask that to a dozen people, you’ll probably get about 20 different answers. But herbicide resistance is one that hits home for many. As you’re about to hear, the tools we’ve been using for decades are becoming less and less effective, and the pipeline for new active ingredients has been empty for a long time. Every year more and more weeds show signs of resistance - which is not a trend that can continue. Today’s guests are the co-founders and co-CEOs of Israel-based WeedOut, a biological herbicide company which uses proprietary pollen to sterilize weeds like Palmer Amaranth, otherwise known as pigweed. Dr. Efrat Lidor Nili and Dr. Orly Noivirt-Brik are both accomplished scientists who have already been a part of one successful exit: they worked at Rosetta Green which was purchased by Monsanto in 2013. WeedOUT is a portfolio company of Fulcrum Global Capital, who partnered with me on this episode. “As we continued to focus on (weed resistance) we understood that this a very significant problem not only in the US but also in Europe, also in China, Australia, South American and all over the world. Out of the 26 modes of action of herbicides 23 have already reported resistance.” -Dr. Orly Noivirt-Brik “In order to slow down this process of resistant development, it’s very important to combine new tactics.” WeedOut has produced a biological pollen that works with the weeds biology to obstruct their reproductive cycle. This is a new mechanism of action that the weeds will not have developed any resistance to. It will also be difficult for weeds to create resistance because they will not be capable of producing more generations that could evolve and adapt. “We are actually reducing significantly the seed bank year after year.” Their main focus so far has been to target Palmer Amaranth as it is a weed of significant resistance and wide dissemination. They do not plan to replace chemical herbicide but rather increase its efficacy by not solely relying on it. “By blocking resistance using our own methods, then you can extend the lifetime of the chemicals that are currently used instead of switching to more toxic chemicals...So actually by blocking resistance, we are preserving the entire set of products that are available today making them efficient for many more years.” -Dr. Efrat Lidor Nili “Our strategy is first to fit our technology to the standard tools that all farmers have. And with the second layer we will continue and explore this opportunity to spray it using drones.” As well as developing different methods of delivery they hope to expand to different weeds. Weeds most susceptible to this technology would reproduce via cross or wind pollination. WeedOut has found success in finding investors that will allow continued expansion and development with a hopeful launch in 2023. This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast: * Meet Dr. Efrat Lidor Nili and Dr. Orly Noivirt-Brik, co-CEOs of WeedOut * Explore the concern regarding herbicide resistance and the lack of progress being made in that space * Learn about the biological solution WeedOut has proven and will be providing to producers globally to combat herbicide resistance of Palmer Amaranth Join the FOA Community! Be sure to join the new Future of Agriculture Membership for even more valuable information on the future of the ag industry. I’m sending out my email newsletter on a more regular basis, focusing on what I call the front lines of agtech: where product meets producer. You can sign up for that at There’s an email icon in the center of the page, just click on that and it will take you to a signup form. Do you have suggestions for topics to be explored? Tweet them to me @timhammerich or email them to Find us online! Future of Agriculture Website AgGrad Website
40 min
The Dissenter
The Dissenter
Ricardo Lopes
#436 Gregg Caruso: Just Deserts, and Rejecting Retributivism
------------------Support the channel------------ Patreon: SubscribeStar: PayPal: PayPal Subscription 1 Dollar: PayPal Subscription 3 Dollars: PayPal Subscription 5 Dollars: PayPal Subscription 10 Dollars: PayPal Subscription 20 Dollars: This show is sponsored by Enlites, Learning & Development done differently. Check the website here: Dr. Gregg D. Caruso is Professor of Philosophy at SUNY Corning and Honorary Professor of Philosophy at Macquarie University. He is also the Co-Director of the Justice Without Retribution Network (JWRN) at the University of Aberdeen School of Law. His research interests include free will, agency, and responsibility (both moral and legal), as well as philosophy of mind, cognitive science, neuroethics, moral psychology, criminal law, punishment, and public policy. His books include Rejecting Retributivism: Free Will, Punishment, and Criminal Justice (2021), Just Deserts: Debating Free Will (w/Daniel C. Dennett) (2021). In this episode, we focus on the two books: Just Deserts, and Rejecting Retributivism. First, we give an overview of the philosophical positions on free will, with a focus on incompatibilism, and we talk about luck. We discuss degrees of free will. We then talk about the link between free will and morality; praise and blame; if people need to believe in free will to be moral; how our legal and penal systems work, and how they should change; if we need to punish wrongdoers. Finally, we go through a lengthy discussion about how a new system could replace the penal systems based on retributivism, and we ask if we should nudge people. -- A HUGE THANK YOU TO MY PATRONS/SUPPORTERS: KARIN LIETZCKE, ANN BLANCHETTE, PER HELGE LARSEN, LAU GUERREIRO, JERRY MULLER, HANS FREDRIK SUNDE, BERNARDO SEIXAS, HERBERT GINTIS, RUTGER VOS, RICARDO VLADIMIRO, BO WINEGARD, CRAIG HEALY, OLAF ALEX, PHILIP KURIAN, JONATHAN VISSER, ANJAN KATTA, JAKOB KLINKBY, ADAM KESSEL, MATTHEW WHITINGBIRD, ARNAUD WOLFF, TIM HOLLOSY, HENRIK AHLENIUS, JOHN CONNORS, PAULINA BARREN, FILIP FORS CONNOLLY, DAN DEMETRIOU, ROBERT WINDHAGER, RUI INACIO, ARTHUR KOH, ZOOP, MARCO NEVES, MAX BEILBY, COLIN HOLBROOK, SUSAN PINKER, THOMAS TRUMBLE, PABLO SANTURBANO, SIMON COLUMBUS, PHIL KAVANAGH, JORGE ESPINHA, CORY CLARK, MARK BLYTH, ROBERTO INGUANZO, MIKKEL STORMYR, ERIC NEURMANN, SAMUEL ANDREEFF, FRANCIS FORDE, TIAGO NUNES, BERNARD HUGUENEY, ALEXANDER DANNBAUER, OMARI HICKSON, PHYLICIA STEVENS, FERGAL CUSSEN, YEVHEN BODRENKO, HAL HERZOG, NUNO MACHADO, DON ROSS, JOÃO ALVES DA SILVA, JONATHAN LEIBRANT, JOÃO LINHARES, OZLEM BULUT, NATHAN NGUYEN, STANTON T, SAMUEL CORREA, ERIK HAINES, MARK SMITH, J.W., JOÃO EIRA, TOM HUMMEL, SARDUS FRANCE, DAVID SLOAN WILSON, YACILA DEZA-ARAUJO, IDAN SOLON, ROMAIN ROCH, DMITRY GRIGORYEV, TOM ROTH, DIEGO LONDOÑO CORREA, YANICK PUNTER, ADANER USMANI, CHARLOTTE BLEASE, MIRAN B, NICOLE BARBARO, AND ADAM HUNT! A SPECIAL THANKS TO MY PRODUCERS, YZAR WEHBE, JIM FRANK, ŁUKASZ STAFINIAK, IAN GILLIGAN, SERGIU CODREANU, LUIS CAYETANO, TOM VANEGDOM, CURTIS DIXON, BENEDIKT MUELLER, VEGA GIDEY, AND NIRUBAN BALACHANDRAN! AND TO MY EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS, MICHAL RUSIECKI, ROSEY, JAMES PRATT, AND MATTHEW LAVENDER!
1 hr 19 min
Intellectual Dark Web Podcast
Stephen Hicks - Egoism in Nietzsche and Rand
Stephen Hicks - Egoism in Nietzsche and Rand STEPHEN HICKS NIETZSCHE LECTURE AYN RAND THE INTELLECTUAL DARK WEB PODCAST We Search the Web for the Best Intellectual Dark Web Podcasts, Lectures and Videos that can be understood by merely listening to save YOUR time. Then we make those Intellectual Dark Web Episodes available on Spotify and downloadable. IMPORTANT! AMAZON DELETED THE LAST INEXPENSIVE BINDING. IT WAS TOO CHEAP! HERE IS ANOTHER VERSION FOR STUDENTS WITH HOBBES, LOCKE, ROUSSEAU AND THE US CONST. IN ONE BOOK: ||| MACHIAVELLI XXX || ROUSSEAU XXX | Thank You Dearly For ANY Support! And God Bless You.
1 hr 5 min
LSE IQ podcast
LSE IQ podcast
London School of Economics and Political Science
Should we be optimistic?
Contributor(s): Dr Tali Sharot, Dr Joan Costa-Font, Professor David de Meza, Dr Chris Kutarna |   Despite our growing collective pessimism about the state of the world, when it comes to our own lives, research suggests we are generally optimistic.   After a year that will remain synonymous with anxiety, isolation, endless devastating news reports, and for too many – loss, this episode of LSE IQ asks: is optimism is good for us? And, beyond the effects on our wellbeing, is optimism an accurate lens through which to view the world?   Addressing these issues are: Dr Tali Sharot, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at UCL; Dr Joan Costa-Font, Associate Professor in Health Economics at LSE; Dr David de Meza, Professor of Management at LSE; and Dr Chris Kutarna, author of Age of Discovery: Navigating the Risks and Rewards of our New Renaissance.     Contributors   Dr Tali Sharot Dr Joan Costa-Font Professor David de Meza Dr Chris Kutarna Research   The Optimism Bias: Why we're wired to look on the bright side by Tali Sharot. Neither an Optimist Nor a Pessimist Be: Mistaken Expectations Lower Well-Being by David de Meza and Chris Dawson in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin. Why optimism and entrepreneurship are not always a good mix for business by David de Meza and Chris Dawson in The Conversation. Optimism and the perceptions of new risks by Elias Mossialos, Caroline Rudisdill and Joan Costa-Font in the Journal of Risk Research. Explaining optimistic old age disability and longevity expectations by Joan Costa-Font and Montserrat Costa-Font in Social Indicators Research. Does optimism help us during a pandemic? by Joan Costa-Font. Age of Discovery: Navigating the Risks and Rewards of Our New Renaissance by Chris Kutarna and Ian Goldin.
40 min
Santa Fe Institute, Michael Garfield
David Stork on AI Art History
Art history is a lot like archaeology — we here in the present day get artifacts and records, but the gaps between them are enormous, and the questions that they beg loom large. Historians need to be able to investigate and interpret, to unpack the meanings and the methods of a given work of art — but even for the best, the act of reconstruction is a trying test. Can we program computers to decipher the backstory of a painting — analyzing light and shadow to guess at how a piece was made? And, even more ambitiously, can AI learn to see and tell the stories rendered in an image’s symbolic content? Recent innovations yield surprising insights and suggest a cyborg future for art scholarship, in which we teach machines to not just recognize a set of objects, but to grok their context and relationships — shining light on messages and narratives once lost to time, and deepening our study of the world of signs. Welcome to COMPLEXITY, the official podcast of the Santa Fe Institute. I’m your host, Michael Garfield, and every other week we’ll bring you with us for far-ranging conversations with our worldwide network of rigorous researchers developing new frameworks to explain the deepest mysteries of the universe. This week we speak with David Stork, who has held full-time and visiting faculty positions in Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Statistics, Neuroscience, Psychology, and Art and Art History variously at Wellesley and Swarthmore Colleges and Clark, Boston, and Stanford Universities…as well as holding corporate positions as Chief Scientist at Ricoh Innovations and Fellow at Rambus, Inc. We talk about the what happens when computers look at art — and the implications for art history and connoisseurship. If you value our research and communication efforts, please consider making a donation at — and/or rating and reviewing us at Apple Podcasts. You can find numerous other ways to engage with us at Thank you for listening! Join our Facebook discussion group to meet like minds and talk about each episode. Podcast theme music by Mitch Mignano. Follow us on social media: Twitter • YouTube • Facebook • Instagram • LinkedIn Go deeper with these additional resources: David’s bio at International Academy, Research, and Industry Association David’s Google Scholar Page David’s SFI Seminar David’s talk at The Frick Collection, “Rigorous Technical Image Analysis of Fine Art: Toward a Computer Connoisseurship”
1 hr
The Munk Debates Podcast
The Munk Debates Podcast
Munk Foundation / Antica Productions / iHeartRadio
Munk Members-Only Pod: Episode 8
This is a sample of the Munk Members-Only Podcast. The program provides listeners with a focused, half-hour masterclass on the big issues, events and trends driving news and current events. The show features Janice Gross Stein, the founding director of the Munk School of Global Affairs and bestselling author, in conversation with Rudyard Griffiths, Chair and moderator of the Munk Debates. This episode provides insights into three big stories in the news: how should the world respond to Iran’s provocative nuclear enrichment ambitions?; did Facebook or the Australian government win the social media regulation standoff Down Under?; and is the global economy poised to boom or bust in 2021 as case counts plummet and commodity prices soar? We debate it all. To access the full length episode consider becoming a Munk Member. Membership is free. Simply log on to to register. Under your membership profile page you will find a link to listen to the full length editions of Munk Members Podcast. If you like what the Munk Debates is all about consider becoming a Supporting Member. For as little as $9.99 monthly you receive unlimited access to our 10+ year library of great debates in HD video, a free Munk Debates book, monthly newsletter, ticketing privileges at our live and online events and a charitable tax receipt (for Canadian residents). To explore you Munk Membership options visit This podcast is a project of the Munk Debates, a Canadian charitable organization dedicated to fostering civil and substantive public dialogue. More information at
11 min
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