The arrival of spring in South Dakota means warmer weather and more outdoor activities. However, it also brings an increase in tick activity.
With their distinctive black and yellow stripes and tendency to hang out in groups, wasps receive attention no matter the time of year. As the weather warms up and spring progresses, you may notice more wasp activity in your yard or around your house.
By now, you’ve probably read headlines about the Asian giant hornets (aka “murder hornets”) that were spotted in Washington state and across the border in Canada. It is important to note that Asian giant hornets have only been confirmed in a small area of Washington and Canada. These wasps have not been observed in South Dakota or our neighboring states.
While research has shown that pollinators, specifically honey bees, can’t survive on dandelion pollen alone, this doesn’t mean that the dandelions aren’t still important for pollinators.
This spring, there have been multiple reports of people seeing large fly-like insects in their yards. These insects are sawflies, and all reports thus far have been the elm sawfly (Cimbex americana).
Summer is here, and so are the opportunities to enjoy the long days and warm weather. Ticks and mosquitoes share the outdoors with us, and there are things you can do to prevent bites from both.
Generally speaking, ‘pollinators’ refers to the suite of plants that produce nectar and pollen (generally flowering broadleaf plants) and the insects and other animals (birds, bats, etc.) that spread the pollen for plant reproduction. In the last several years, the honey bee has been at the center of the pollinator discussion, as their populations have crashed – placing bee keepers and their fruit and nut producing clientele at risk.
The insects listed in this guide can be pests of rangeland in South Dakota. The best approach for preventing these pests from reaching damaging populations involves routine scouting.
Many of our native bee species are solitary. In order to ensure that these kinds of bees spend more time in our yards and gardens, it is important to make sure we include places for them to nest.