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Tropical Agriculture

Scientists recognized in fight against Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death

Ohia flower

Three scientists were honored by the Hawaiʻi Invasive Species Council with the Greatest Hits award for their work in the fight against Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death. Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death is a virulent disease that has killed more than 100,000 ʻōhiʻa trees on Hawaiʻi Island. The honorees were Extension Forester J.B. Friday of the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa College of Tropical ...

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A global perspective on honeybee virus transmission

University of Hawaiʻi graduate student Scott Nikaido and researcher Ethel Villalobos examine honeybees in a hive.

Ethel Villalobos, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa researcher and director of the UH Honeybee Project, is an internationally recognized authority on bees and their pests and diseases. She was recently asked by the journal Science to write an accompanying piece to an article they were publishing that explored the geographical origin and evolutionary history of the bee pest the Varroa mite ...

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Longstanding genetic question solved by studying corn

Kevin Schneider and Thomas Wolfgruber

A question that has long puzzled geneticists now has a solution: researcher Gernot Presting and three postdoctoral scholars in his lab, all members of the Department of Molecular Biosciences and Bioengineering in the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, have explained why the DNA at the centromeres evolves so quickly. The Centromere Paradox On the X-shaped chromosome, the centromere is at the “cross” point of the ...

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[VIDEO] Seeding the future of the ʻōhiʻa tree

Ohia flower

The Hawaiian ʻōhiʻa tree forest is under attack. The once lush forest is scattered with the white skeletons of dead ʻōhiʻa trees. A devastating disease called Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death, or ROD, has decimated more than 34,000 acres on Hawaiʻi Island. Scientists at the University of Hawaiʻi have been monitoring the spread of ROD with great concern and are looking for ...

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Summer AgDiscovery program for teens accepting applications

AgDiscovery students in greenhouse with orchid specialist Teresita Amore.

The Hawaiʻi AgDiscovery Program, July 10–23, 2016, is now open for applications from students 14 to 17 years old. This unique, free summer program, hosted for the sixth year by UH Manoa’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, gives its teenage participants a first-hand look at the many career paths open to them in agriculture and natural resource management, ...

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Hawaiʻi wildfires strongly linked to human activity

Flames move uphill in Oʻahu wildfire

A new research paper co-authored by University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa researchers outlines the surprising frequency of wildfire in the Hawaiian Islands. Clay Trauernicht and Creighton Litton of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Management in the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources drew on multiple sources to construct a 108-year fire history that demonstrates a more-than-fourfold increase ...

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What children eat when they’re on their own

Fresh foods_CTAHR

In collaboration with a multi-state team of researchers, Jinan Banna, assistant professor in the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR), has published a paper in the journal Nutrients assessing the influence of parenting practices on eating behaviors of early adolescents during independent eating occasions and the implications for obesity prevention. Early adolescents consume foods and beverages during eating occasions that occur ...

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Food security focus of presentation series


The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR) presents 12 at 12, a spring 2016 series of presentations that will bring together UH Mānoa faculty from various departments to discuss the divergent aspects and various themes related to food security. 12 at 12 presentations will be hosted by a different department each month in order to ...

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CTAHR scientist selected as policy fellow for national entomological society

Helen Spafford

Helen Spafford, an associate professor in the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR), has been named a Science Policy Fellow for the Entomological Society of America. She is one of only five scientists across the country to be designated in 2015. The competitive fellowship program was created in 2014 to support scientists for ...

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Hawaiian peaches could have a bright future


Peaches aren’t a new crop in Hawai‘i — but good peaches just might be. The tasty and popular fruit hasn’t previously done well in the Islands. A College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR) publication from 1973 discourages growing peaches in the Islands, explaining that fruit flies would damage the crop too severely and there were few varieties not ...

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