WTM London 2015 to be opened by Former Manchester United Boss

first_imgWorld Travel Market London 2015, the leading global event for the travel industry, will be opened by David Gill, Former Chief Executive of one of the world’s most valuable and well known football clubs Manchester United.Since joining the club as Finance Director in 1997, Gill lead the way to Manchester United becoming one of the world’s most valuable football clubs, now valued at USD 1.98 billion, overseeing four Premier League titles, three League Cups, one European Cup, one Club World Cup and an FA Cup since 2003.Gill stepped down as Chief Executive for Manchester United in 2013 but still remains a Non-Executive Director, and was responsible for the second highest-earning football club in the world, turning over annual revenue of Euro 518 million.Gill will open World Travel Market London 2015 on November 2 at ExCeL London at the WTM Leaders Lunch, which will host 200 of the industry’s most senior executives. This year’s lunch is organised in association with Mexico Tourism, WTM London’s Premier Partner.Last year’s event guest speaker was retail royalty Justin King CBE, Former CEO of J Sainsbury’s, and in 2013 Former Marks & Spencer Chairman and CEO Sir Stuart Rose took to the stage.World Travel Market, Senior Director, Simon Press said, “I am delighted David Gill has agreed to open World Travel Market London 2015.“Such a successful and well-known businessman, Gill’s knowledge of International business will no doubt offer transferable knowledge to the senior industry leaders of global travel brands sat in the room before him.“David Gill will kick off the four days of business deal negotiations between 5,000 exhibitors and 9,000 WTM Buyers’ Club members perfectly.”last_img read more

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Botswana prioritises tourism in its 2016 budget

first_imgThe tourism sector in Botswana has the potential to contribute positively to growth and job creation, said Minister of Finance and Development Planning.Presenting the 2016 budget speech, Kenneth Matambo said the government would continue to create an enabling environment for tourism businesses including encouraging joint partnerships between individuals, citizen companies and non-citizens.A number of initiatives were also being undertaken which include the Dams Tourism project, Gaborone Precinct project and the Kasane-Kazungula Redevelopment project currently under preparation.Matambo mentioned that Botswana was voted the best destination country to visit in 2016 by Lonely Planet Publication, a global travel and tourism publication.According to Botswana’s tourism report Q2 2016, tourism in the country has shown a rapid growth with high profile marketing campaigns, improving transport, and accommodation infrastructure helping to attract more high spend visitors from affluent European and Asian source markets. Over the long term, the country could develop a major safari holiday destination to rival more established markets.last_img read more

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Thailand staged grand Songkran celebrations to illustrate the true spirit of Thai

first_imgThailand is elevating the profile of the annual Songkran Festival with the “Songkran Splendours: The Procession of Three Kingdoms” grand opening ceremony to ensure local and international travellers enjoy a more ‘authentic experience’ and get the chance to ‘discover more amazing stories of Thainess while joining the celebrations for Thai New Year in the kingdom.Deputy Prime Minister General Thanasak Patimaprakorn said, “Songkran is the holiday that unites the nation in a spirit of fun and devotion to the family. The New Year rituals are observed differently in all parts of the nation, and this variety is something that should be celebrated and showcased. The Royal Thai Government is dedicated to preserving all aspects of the nation’s culture in every region, as it is the source of our strength, character, and national pride.”H.E. Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul, Minister of Tourism and Sports said, “The Songkran Splendours: The Procession of Three Kingdoms” is aimed at giving visitors a taste of Songkran and show how important it has been to the culture and the unity of the nation over the centuries. We want to show how the festival differs in how it is observed nationwide and celebrate these unique elements of our culture. Above all, we want to show that for all Thais, Songkran is about family and a time to be with loved ones – this is the true spirit of Songkran.”Yuthasak Supasorn, Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Governor said, “Songkran is the most important festival in the Thai calendar and is celebrated in different ways up and down the country. We want travellers to discover more about this unique Thai event and to get a taste of the huge range of distinct local festivals. So we are getting Songkran off to a great start with our Grand Songkran Celebrations that will help people learn about Songkran’s long history and special traditions.last_img read more

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Muslimfriendly online booking platform HalalHoliday launched

first_imgHalalHoliday, a unique online booking platform was launched earlier in July in Kuala Lumpur. The online travel booking platform aims to become the world’s largest Muslim-friendly online travel market place. It is dedicated to merging the traditional travel trade community with a digital platform. HalalHoliday is run by World Halal Holiday for Muslim (WHHM), a technology company launched by Ab Rahman Mohamed Ali to develop smart travel products. HalalHoliday is still in its beta stage and will be fully operational in September. The target is to list 600,000 hotels across 180 countries, with flights from more than 500 airlines. Till its completion, the OTA will be enlisting tour packages to more than 60 destinations, including Haj and Umrah tour as well as halal cruises.Speaking at the launch, Ab Rahman Mohamed Ali, CEO of POTO Travel & Tours said, “We’ve got offline covered but there is this emerging online trend to explore. Yes, we heard that this industry is fully penetrated, but we took a calculated risk and decided to have fun.” He further added, “We believe that the offline-to-online opportunity is significant.”Halal Holiday is working in close association with the  Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) and the Association of Umrah and Hajj Travel Agents (PAPUH) to generate traffic to its website.last_img read more

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What the GSE Downgrades Mean for Housing Markets

first_img “”Standard & Poor’s””:http://www.standardandpoors.com/SPComIPResolver continued a bold streak it started Saturday by deflating debt credit ratings for mortgage giants “”Fannie Mae””:http://www.fanniemae.com/kb/index?page=home and “”Freddie Mac””:http://www.freddiemac.com/ Monday, scaring investors and adding velocity to a late-day 630-point plunge by the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Sparing Black Monday sensationalism, a question looms: What will the downgrades mean for mortgage markets, housing ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô and thus the economy ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô at large?[IMAGE]Analysts and news reports suggest that the downgrades will eventually lead to higher borrowing costs and mortgage rates, with more potentially in store for a debt-ridden federal government if rumors of a double-dip recession prove true in coming months.Quelling few fears, Freddie released earnings for the second quarter that revealed a net loss of $2.1 billion over the second quarter this year, with news that the GSE would request $1.5 billion from the “”Treasury Department””:http://www.treasury.gov/Pages/default.aspx to buttress sagging numbers. After posting $2.9 billion in net losses for the same period, Fannie said Friday it would go hat-in-hand to taxpayers for $5.1 billion.The earnings reflect continuing trends for the GSEs, which back about nine in 10, or roughly 90 percent, of mortgage-backed securities across the country. Their federal conservatorship, the result of $170 billion in Treasury bailouts during the recession, led S&P to yank their AAA debt ratings as U.S. debt ratings dipped to AA+ over the weekend. In its “”filing””:http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=108360&p=irol-SECText&TEXT=aHR0cDovL2lyLmludC53ZXN0bGF3YnVzaW5lc3MuY29tL2RvY3VtZW50L3YxLzAwMDEyOTk5MzMtMTEtMDAyNDU4L3htbA%3d%3d with the “”Securities and Exchange Commission””:http://sec.gov/, Fannie cast further doubt on the implications of its downgrade by saying the company “”cannot predict the ultimate impact of the S&P downgrade on our access to or cost of debt funding, or on our business, liquidity, results of operations, financial condition or net worth.””[COLUMN_BREAK]A spokesperson for Freddie declined to comment on the downgrade.””The downgrade doesn’t surprise anybody,”” says Greg McBride, a senior financial analyst with “”Bankrate””:http://www.bankrate.com/?ec_id=m1077677. “”Uncle Sam has been bleeding red ink for decades.””The markets felt the most immediate effects Tuesday as yields expanded relative to Treasuries in the biggest sweep in two years. According to “”_Bloomberg News_””:http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-08-08/agency-mortgage-debt-spreads-widen-to-most-in-two-years-after-downgrades.html, Fannie Mae’s rates for 30-year securitized loans leapt to 1.22 percentage points, 0.14 percentage points above 10-year U.S. Treasuries ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô a new high from April 2009.McBride explains that investors rushed to Treasury debt Monday since even less credible government debt remains a safe bet in global markets. By picking up mortgage-backed bonds, he says, investors expanded yields relative to Treasuries. He credits the flood of investors to debt with still-low mortgage rates despite widespread worries to the contrary. Still, he says, fallout from the downgrades will reach wider areas in the economy.””Right now the downgrade is taking a backseat to broader economic concerns, but there’s no disguising the fact that the downgrade will result in higher mortgage rates eventually,”” McBride adds.His real worry? “”The hub on the wheel is jobs,”” the financial analyst says, citing the still-pale 117,000 jobs added by the economy over July. “”People aren’t going to buy houses if they’re nervous about their job security.””Celia Chen, senior research director and housing specialist with “”Moody’s Analytics””:http://www.moodysanalytics.com/, echoes his concerns about capital movements and losses in the wider economy that could reflect and feed off downward trends in the housing market.””Mortgage rates will not be much affected by the downgrade,”” she agrees. “”The downgrading does, however, heighten the risk that the nation ends up back in recession, as the selloff ends up feeding on itself. If the nation double-dips, housing’s fledgling recovery will be squashed.””Paul Dales, senior U.S. economist with “”Capital Economics””:http://www.capitaleconomics.com/, takes issue with notions that mortgage rates will rise anytime soon in response to the downgrades.├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£I think we├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬óre going to have very low mortgage rates for a few years”” until the economic recovery improves, he says. What the GSE Downgrades Mean for Housing Markets Share in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicingcenter_img Agents & Brokers Bankrate Fannie Mae Freddie Mac Investors Lenders & Servicers Processing S & P Index Service Providers U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission 2011-08-09 Ryan Schuette August 9, 2011 425 Views last_img read more

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Stocks Swell for Big Four as Construction Spending Rises

first_img May 1, 2012 407 Views Share Stocks Swell for Big Four as Construction Spending Rises Shares swelled for the nation’s four largest lenders Tuesday, with analysts crediting a rise in construction spending over March for a climb by the stock market to levels not seen in four years.[IMAGE]The Dow Jones Industrial Average cleared an important psychological hurdle by rising 65 points to 13,279, the highest in four years, according to several outlets.[COLUMN_BREAK]Shares rose for “”Bank of America””:https://www.bankofamerica.com/ by 2.47 percent accordingly, hitting $8.31 per share. “”Wells Fargo””:https://www.wellsfargo.com/ followed behind by 2.02 percent to reach $34.09 per share.””JPMorgan Chase””:http://www.jpmorganchase.com/corporate/Home/home.htm scaled to $43.79 per share on a 1.88 percent rise. “”Citigroup’s””:http://www.citigroup.com/citi/ shares went up 1.68 percent to end the day at $33.60 per share.Media outlets and analysts attributed the boon to a leap ahead in confidence for the Chinese and U.S. economies, with a slight rise in construction spending over March responsible for the latter.The “”Commerce Department””:http://www.commerce.gov/ said Tuesday that construction spending ticked up to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $808.1 billion, 1 percent more than revised estimates of $807.3 billion month-over-month and 6 percent above figures seen in March last year.Construction spending arrived at $171.2 billion, 6.7 percent above numbers seen in 2011.Private construction spending closed in on a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $531.9 billion, 0.7 percent above February estimates, with residential construction at $244.1 billion in March and public construction at $276.2 billion.center_img Agents & Brokers Bank of America Citigroup Confidence Dow Jones Industrial Average Investors JPMorgan Chase Lenders & Servicers Private Construction Residential Construction Service Providers Shares Stocks Wells Fargo 2012-05-01 Ryan Schuette in Data, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicinglast_img read more

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Freddie Macs Portfolio Resumes Decline in August

first_imgFreddie Mac’s Portfolio Resumes Decline in August Freddie Mac Mortgage-Backed Securities Refinance 2014-10-03 Krista Franks Brock Share After posting a slight increase in July, Freddie Mac’s mortgage portfolio declined at an annualized rate of 0.4 percent over the month of August, according to the GSE’s latest monthly volume summary.Year-to-date, the portfolio’s annualized growth rate has averaged -1.6 percent, bolstered by declines near or higher than 2 percent in each of the first five months of the year.Mortgage-related securities and other guarantee commitments at the GSE increased at an annualized rate of 4.1 percent in August, marking the highest rate of growth this calendar year and any time in the past 12 months.At $9.8 billion, single-family refinance purchases made up 41 percent of Freddie Mac’s total single-family purchases and issuances in August based on unpaid principal balance, while relief refinances made up 18 percent.Freddie Mac conducted $2.3 billion in new multifamily business in August, bringing the year-to-date total to $11.3 billion.Both single-family and multifamily serious delinquencies decreased at Freddie Mac in August. Single-family serious delinquencies fell to 1.98 percent, from 2.02 percent in August. Serious delinquencies in Freddie Mac’s multifamily portfolio decreased from 0.05 percent to 0.04 percent.Freddie Mac also revealed that its exposure to changes in portfolio market value was about $23 million over the month of August.Freddie Mac completed 5,374 mortgage loan modifications in August, bringing the year-to-date total to 47,356.center_img in Daily Dose, Headlines, News, Secondary Market October 3, 2014 450 Views last_img read more

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ClosingCorp Selects New CFO

first_img James BolgerClosingCorp, a San Diego-based residential real estate closing cost data and technology provider for the mortgage and real estate services industries, has announced the hiring of James Bolger as chief financial officer.Bolger has more than a decade of experience in leading financial operations at mortgage finance companies, which includes serving as CFO at cloud-based intelligent marketing solution provider PTI Marketing Technologies; and senior financial positions with Accredited Home Lender and GreenPoint Credit Corp. Bolger has a bachelor’s in finance and a master’s in business administration from San Diego State University.In his new position with ClosingCorp, Bolger will be responsible for leading the company’s financial affairs, which include fiscal reporting, budget planning, capital financing, and the company’s growth strategy. He will report directly to ClosingCorp CEO Brian Benson.”We’re delighted to welcome Jim to ClosingCorp,” Benson said. “Jim has a proven track record of helping companies harness financial information to empower decision-making and deliver a better service experience to its clients.  Moreover, his past experiences as a senior financial executive at high-growth, public and private companies in the mortgage finance space will be vital to our continued success.” Share July 31, 2015 433 Views ClosingCorp Selects New CFOcenter_img ClosingCorp James Bolger Real Estate Closing Data and Technology 2015-07-31 Staff Writer in Headlines, Newslast_img read more

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FHFA Extends HARP Rolls Out High LTV Refi Option

first_img August 25, 2016 847 Views FHFA Extends HARP, Rolls Out High LTV Refi Option The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced on Thursday it will be extending its Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) until September 30, 2017. HARP was scheduled to expire at the end of this year.In its Q2 Refinance Report released in mid-August, FHFA reported there are still a few hundred thousand borrowers eligible to refinance through HARP but have not done so. As of the end of Q2, approximately 3.42 million borrowers have refinanced through HARP since the program’s launch in early 2009.“There are still more than 323,000 U.S. borrowers  eligible for the program who have a financial incentive to refinance, as of the first quarter of 2016,” FHFA stated in its report. “These so called ‘in-the-money’ borrowers meet the basic HARP eligibility requirements, have a remaining balance of $50,000 or more on their mortgage, have a remaining term on their loan of greater than 10 years, and their mortgage interest rate is at least 1.5 percent higher than current market rates.”FHFA launched HARP in early 2009 as a way for borrowers who are current on their mortgages but have little or no equity to take advantage of low interest rates and other refinancing benefits. The program was originally scheduled to expire at the end of 2011, but was extended to 2013, then extended to the end of 2015, then to the end of 2016.FHFA estimates that eligible borrowers who refinance through HARP can save approximately $2,400 per year on mortgage payments. The Agency has made attempts to reach borrowers eligible for HARP through a series of outreach events in cities with the most eligible borrowers (Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit, Miami, Newark, and Phoenix), webinars, websites, and social media campaigns.Also on Thursday, the FHFA announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, at FHFA’s direction, will be implementing a refinancing option for borrowers with high loan-to-value (LTV) ratios.To qualify for the new high LTV refinancing option, borrowers:Must not have missed any mortgage payments for the previous six months;Must not have missed more than one payment in the previous 12 months;Must have a source of income;Must receive a benefit from the refinance, such as a reduction in their monthly mortgage payment.The new refinancing option will make use of the lessons learned from HARP and its streamlined approach to refinancing, according to FHFA.“Providing a sustainable refinance opportunity for high LTV borrowers who have demonstrated responsibility by remaining current on their mortgage makes financial sense both for borrowers and for the Enterprises,” said FHFA Director Melvin L. Watt.  “This new offering will give borrowers the opportunity to refinance when rates are low, making their mortgages more affordable and thus reducing credit risk exposure for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.”Like HARP, borrowers, with the new high LTV refinancing option, borrowers are not subject to a minimum credit score, there is no maximum debt-to-income ratio or maximum LTV, and an appraisal will often not be required. Unlike HARP, there are no eligibility cutoff dates with the new high LTV refinance option, and borrowers can use the option more than once to refinance their mortgage.“We are pleased to move forward with a new streamlined refinance option scheduled for October 2017,” said Andrew Bon Salle, EVP, Single-Family Business with Fannie Mae. “Aimed at borrowers with high loan-to-value (LTV) ratios, the new option builds on the successes of the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) and will provide sustainable refinance opportunities to borrowers with existing Fannie Mae mortgages who are making their mortgage payments on time. At the direction of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), Fannie Mae will continue to offer HARP through September 30, 2017 to ensure that eligible borrowers can take advantage of the existing HARP program. We look forward to working with FHFA and Freddie Mac to provide needed liquidity so eligible homeowners can take advantage of low interest rates and refinance into more affordable mortgages.”Dave Lowman, EVP, Single-Family Business at Freddie Mac, said, “Our forthcoming high loan-to-value (LTV) offering, which is scheduled to be available in October 2017, will allow eligible borrowers to refinance into more affordable and sustainable mortgages as interest rates continue to be at historic lows. We expect to carry through many of the most successful features of the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP), including its streamlined documentation requirements. In the interim, at the direction of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), both Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae will continue to offer HARP through Sept. 30, 2017. We look forward to working with the FHFA and Fannie Mae to continue providing liquidity in the market and supporting American homeowners.” in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, Newscenter_img Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac HARP Home Affordable Refinance Program Mortgage Refinances 2016-08-25 Seth Welborn Sharelast_img read more

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Will Housing Finance Reform Ever Get Done

first_img February 21, 2018 654 Views Will Housing Finance Reform Ever Get Done? Share Banking CoreLogic Fannie Mae Freddie Mac GSEs HOUSING Housing Finance Outlook Reforms 2018-02-21 Radhika Ojhacenter_img in Daily Dose, Featured, Government, News As the 115th United States Congress begins its second session Stuart Pratt, Global Head of Public Policy and Industry Relations at CoreLogic discusses the way forward for Housing Finance Reform being tabled during the session. From whether this Congress would accomplish Housing Finance Reform to what banking-related bills might pass this year, learn more about the U.S. Housing Policy outlook in this video.For more insights on how the mortgage industry is working together with officials making critical decisions on the direction of the housing economy to protect the industry and customers they serve, be sure to attend the 2018 Five Star Government Forum scheduled for April 3 at The Newseum in Washington, D.C. With representation from the CFPB, HUD, FHFA, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Ginnie Mae, and others, the forum is a day-long gathering for leaders in mortgage servicing and the federal government to engage in open dialogue about the industry’s most pressing issues. To register, click here.last_img read more

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How California avocado growers keep Persea mites f

first_img How California avocado growers keep Persea mites f … By Andreas Neuman, CEO of UAV-IQ Precision AgricultureThis article is part of a series on biological control and IPM written by UAV-IQ (www.uaviq.com). With an annual value of about $2.6 billion, California represents close to 90% of the United State’s strawberry production, followed by Florida, which is by far the largest domestic producer of winter strawberries. Despite their large sizes, these crops are being put in significant danger by some tiny threats. “Arthropods” more commonly known as spider mites are threatening our ability to enjoy these sweet red delicacies year-round. The two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae or “TSSM”) is one of the most common and damaging ones.This very small (1/100 – 1/50 inches / 0.3 – 0.5mm) yellow/green pest with large dark spots on each side of their body can cause significant yield loss. While the size of the fruit is not typically affected, their number can be reduced by over 50%!GOOD FIELD SCOUTING IS CRITICAL TO CONTROL SPIDER MITESTwo-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae) under magnification. SourceThe two-spotted spider mite usually causes the majority of its damage early in the season, so special field scouting effort needs to be implemented from February to June in California and even into August in some locations (Santa Maria), and December to April in Florida.Growers should pay special attention when the weather is dry and hot, as these conditions promote the emergence of pest populations. Dust on the plant also encourages mites, so it is recommended that the scouting team starts monitoring the edges of fields which are adjacent to dirt roads.One of the difficulties of monitoring two-spotted spider mites is that by the time their most obvious symptoms are visible to the naked eye (upper leaf surfaces turning yellow and webbing underside the leaf), it’s too late to prevent suffering at least some yield loss. This is why constant monitoring is important., Mmanual inspection using a 10x – 14x magnification hand lens is the most commonly used method (remember, they are VERY tiny). In some at-risk areas, preventative control with select pesticides or biocontrol release might be necessary.The good news is that some researchers and growers have demonstrated that the use of drone-based remote sensing or handheld spectroradiometers could help detect symptoms of two-spotted spider mites much more efficiently and rapidly. Most importantly, this can be done to spot the symptoms before they are visible to the naked eye, or at least map the spread of the pest in the field over time. Some phenology models which are based on degree-days can be used by entomologists tracking accumulations to match this data against the degree-days necessary for each stage of development of tetranychus urticae. When used with forecasted climate data, these models can also help predict future pest outbreaks and support your scouting efforts.  WHEN AND WHERE TO SCOUT FOR TWO-SPOTTED SPIDER MITESThe samples should be taken on midtier leaflets (middle-aged leaves that are neither too green and shiny, nor too old or dirty), and the underside of the leaves must be observed since this is where the TSSM hide.For strawberries planted during the fall, scouting needs to be performed once every two weeks, as soon as the first leaf is fully expanded. Scouting teams should start weekly monitoring when the maximum temperatures rise to 68°F (20ºC) after the winter. The Biocontrol Brief: Aliens (aka parasitoids) ver … The Biocontrol Report: Economic decision-making in … You might also be interested in For second-year plantings, the probability of two-spotted spider mite presence is much higher, so action needs to be taken early in the season and monitoring needs to be done on a regular basis.Good scouting comes with good tracking and reporting, so you can determine the at-risk areas and follow the evolution of pest outbreaks. It is recommended to note down the “hotspot”, either in a pest control report book or with a georeferenced pin on a map on a scouting App on your mobile phone.THE LIMITATIONS OF MITICIDES TO CONTROL SPIDER MITES:Pesticide resistance is an issue when controlling many agricultural pests with chemicals. The two-spotted spider mite is a notorious example as it has been proven capable of developing resistance to more than 92 active ingredients in pesticides!In addition to the resistance that can build up over time, miticide/acaricide applications might also affect beneficial arthropods population, TSSM’s natural enemies, and therefore “foster” spider mite outbreaks.Last but not least, this type of pest normally feeds on the underside of the leaves, which often makes leaf spray coverage ineffective against them.CONTROL SPIDER MITES WITH BIOCONTROL USING MACROORGANISMSAs we have previously discussed in our article introducing augmentative biocontrol, the goal of an IPM program is not to eradicate the pest population, but rather to keep it under a specific threshold which will vary according to the time of the year. Early in the season (February through April in California) the spider mite population on strawberry crops should be less than five mites per midtier leaflet. Later in the season (May through August in California), the treatment threshold is higher (maximum of 15 – 20 mites per midtier leaflet) as the plants become more tolerant to mite damage.Several beneficials can be released to control tetranychus urticae. Phytoseiulus persimilis, a predatory mite, is one of the most common and effective natural enemies and prey only on spider mites. But the choice of the beneficial might depend on the temperature – the predatory mite Amblyseius swirskii for instance is more effective controlling spider mites during the hot summer weather. There are numbers of other options, such as green lacewing bugs (Chrysopa spp.) or ladybugs (spider mite destroyer, Stethorus spp.). It is recommended to start the release of control agents when pest levels are low to medium and repeating the releases a total of three to four times per season for optimal control.Drones are increasingly used to scout for indications of two-spotted spider mites on strawberry crops and also to release beneficial insects in a fast and effective way.If the population is too high and a miticide application is needed as part of an IPM program, only the infected area should be targeted, using narrow range/selective biopesticide, that can be combined with the release of beneficial insects afterward. Growers should make sure to get information from the product manufacturer or from their PCA on the impact miticide has on natural enemies and pollinators. CONCLUSIONWhile the two-spotted spider mite can become a serious threat for strawberries, some good pest management practices can avoid significant yield damage and costly “last minute” chemical applications: looking for the presence of TSSM on new plants coming from the nursery, checking for the potential effects of pesticides on TSSM’s natural enemies before applying, performing periodic scouting in the fields and releasing beneficial insects starting early in the season. Do you have any experience with the biological control of the two-spotted spider mites? Is your team trained to scout and recognize their presence in the field? Share your story with us and fellow growers in the comments!UAV-IQ Precision Agriculture is a company that leverages precision agriculture technologies and best practices to help growers address labor shortages and make farming operations more profitable and sustainable. March 13 , 2019 last_img read more

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A group of Travel Counsellors agents recently expe

first_imgA group of Travel Counsellors agents recently experienced fabulous Fiji on a familiarisation trip showcased the many attractions of this popular destination.The Matai Mega Famil was organised by Tourism Fiji and a range of hotel, cruise and tour partners and ran from 6-12 March. David Phillips, Sharon Wood, Lani Symons-Vaughn, Vivienne Smith, Carol Mills, Deborah Bartolo, Gaury Balayasoderan, Simone Neal, Suzanne Watson and Mihaela Gale all represented Travel Counsellors on the trip.The itineraries were split into different groups that covered diverse facets of Fiji, including adventure, cruising and family travel. While the itineraries varied, each had many things in common – namely Fiji’s warm hospitality, rich cultural traditions, fresh seafood cuisine, luxury accommodation and balmy weather.Vivienne Smith from NSW took part in the Blue Lagoon Cruises famil and was impressed by the beauty of the Yasawa Islands area.“From seeing the famed Blue Lagoon with my own eyes to enjoying cocktails and canapes in beach bars and visiting locals living on small islands, this cruise was incredible. While we spent plenty of time off the boat doing day trips to beaches and villages, our time spent on the boat was very memorable. I enjoyed eating on deck under the stars and I know I wasn’t the only one sad to disembark at the end of the trip,” said Smith.Suzanne Watson from Queensland experienced the luxe resorts of Fiji’s north.“Getting to stay at places like Qamea Island Resort, Matangi Island Resort and Jean-Michel Cousteau Fiji Islands Resort is a dream come true. The level of service and warm hospitality that I received in these resorts is incredible. Now that I’ve had this experience I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend my clients try an all-inclusive resort in Fiji’s north – it’s the ultimate way to relax,” said Watson.Simone Neal from Victoria got in touch with Fiji’s more adventurous side with activities like beach volleyball, sunset tube cruising and snorkelling included on the itinerary.“I think many people associate Fiji with relaxation, however there are plenty of sports and activities for travellers who want to have active adventures. Fiji has some supremely good snorkelling spots and dive sites, so I’ll definitely encourage clients who love snorkelling and diving to try Fiji for their next holiday,” said Neal.Lani Symons-Vaughn, David Phillips and Sharon WoodManaging director David Hughes advocates that Travel Counsellors take part in as many familiarisation tours as they can, in order to become better agents.“Nothing beats firsthand experience of a destination, hotel or tour operator. That is why we encourage Travel Counsellors to travel as much as they can to become better agents,” said Hughes.“Leaving their business to travel is sometimes a concern and that is why we employ several travel industry professionals to keep Travel Counsellors individual businesses ticking over while they are away. Knowing that their clients are being looked after while they’re travelling makes for a more productive trip and smoother landing,” he said. Events/FamilsfijiTravellers Choicelast_img read more

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Aer SoutheastairlinesIrelandWaterford

first_imgAer SoutheastairlinesIrelandWaterford Waterford Airport in Ireland has announced the advent of a new commercial airline which will be based at Waterford and fly to London Luton airport, Manchester airport and Birmingham airport from 24 July 2017.Aer Southeast will operate a Saab 340 turboprop that can carry up to 34 passengers. Flights to London will operate six times per week, while trips to Manchester and Birmingham will each operate three times each week.A spokeswoman for Waterford Airport told Fora that the airline will operate under a lease agreement with a European carrier that holds an Irish air operator certificate.In June 2016, Waterford lost its only commercial flights when Belgian carrier VLM pulled its service to London Luton. Since then, the airport has only handled private jets and a coastguard helicopter.Waterford Airport chief executive Desmond O’Flynn said: “I am delighted that Aer Southeast will resume three scheduled air services to the UK, all of which have proved their worth and their vital importance to the South East over many years.“I am also very pleased to welcome this Scandinavian consortium to Waterford.“We look forward to working closely with SkyTruckers [the company behind Aer Southeast], as once again regular and sustainable air links to key cities in the UK are operated over the coming months and years.”Waterford City/ Eamonn Bolgerlast_img read more

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GOLDEN DEAL Enjoy a Gold Coast getaway based at t

first_imgGOLDEN DEALEnjoy a Gold Coast getaway based at the iconic 4.5-star Q1 Resort & Spa and receive two nights free and two spa vouchers with Flight Centre. Priced from $599* per person twin share, the package includes six nights for the price of four in a one bedroom spa apartment and two $40 day spa vouchers, valid for sale until 8 December, 2017, for travel from 12 November to 2 December, 2017. Quote deal code 4930521 *Prices are subject to change and availability. SET SAIL FOR NZ AND SAVESpend 13 nights cruising the South Pacific Ocean visiting the picturesque ports of New Zealand and pocket a $300* saving plus bonus $200* onboard credit with Flight Centre. Visit Fjordland National Park, Port Chalmers, Akaroa, Wellington, Napier, Tauranga, Auckland and the Bay of Islands. Priced from $1899* per person for an inside twin share cabin, the package includes a 13 night roundtrip cruise from Sydney aboard the Sun Princess, all main meals and entertainment onboard and bonus $200* onboard credit to spend per cabin. Departing 4 March, 2018, the special offer is valid for sale until 31 October, 2017. Quote deal code 4899639 *Prices are subject to change and availability. IMAGE: Q1 Resort & Spa Gold Coast, QLD dealsFlight Centrelast_img read more

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hotelsIHGthailandYao Yai Resort

first_imghotelsIHGthailandYao Yai Resort InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has signed an agreement with Soraya Development Company Limited to develop the InterContinental Yao Yai Resort, in Phang Nga Bay, set between southern Thailand’s mainland and Phuket Island. Scheduled to open early 2020, the new-built 170-key InterContinental Yao Yai Resort will be situated half an hour from Phuket and Krabi airports, as well as Phuket and Krabi private piers. Offering four main room categories – 72-square metre ocean view rooms with a panoramic view suite on the top floor, complete with a plunge pool; rooms or suites suitable for families in one of three family-designated buildings featuring water slides, pool access and the brand signature Planet Trekkers Programme; 18 one-bedroom tropical units situated on the lagoon and creeks; beachfront pool villas, encompassing 10 one-bedroom, one two-bedroom, and one three-bedroom units that boast unblocked ocean views across a kilometre of beach length.Along with three restaurant and bar outlets, a gym, pool, spa and resort centre, the hotel will offer unique features including the Water Facilities Centre, high-end transfer to and from the hotel, as well as luxurious meeting facilities and intimate wedding arrangements. Special occasions can also be arranged at the private sandbank during low tide periods.last_img read more

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A seventime Pro Bowl selection Fitzgerald is com

first_imgA seven-time Pro Bowl selection, Fitzgerald is coming off one of the worst seasons in his career. He caught 71 passes, tallied only 798 yards and scored just four touchdowns. – / 11 Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Well ain’t that a sight for sore eyes.New Arizona Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer and wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald shared a chat during a weight room session at the team’s Tempe training facility Thursday, and AZCardinals.com’s Darren Urban snapped a photo of the occasion.The Cardinals went out and traded for Palmer with hopes he’ll be the answer to their woes at the position, and no doubt Fitzgerald feels the same way.center_img Top Stories Comments   Share   Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

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LISTEN Steve Keim Cardinals general manager

first_imgLISTEN: Steve Keim, Cardinals general manager The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo 0 Comments   Share   Your browser does not support the audio element. Keim invested two draft picks in the line, including a first-rounder on North Carolina guard Jonathan Cooper. Free agent veterans Eric Winston and Chilo Rachal were also brought in to fortify the effort up front.But one free agent signing that flew under the radar is making his mark in this year’s camp.Paul Fanaika, a former Arizona State Sun Devil, started at right guard in Arizona’s preseason opener against the Green Bay Packers Friday, and has been one of the biggest eye-openers this preseason, according to Keim.“He continues to be one of the surprises in camp,” Keim told Doug and Wolf on Arizona Sports 620 Monday morning. “When you look at Paul, we saw flashes throughout the spring after we signed him. He’s done a nice job here in camp.“Once the lights came on, that was going to be the real question. You know, was it going to be too big for him? Paul really answered the test Friday night, he did a nice job for us.”Fanaika, who played for the Sun Devils from 2005 to 2008, was originally a seventh-round pick of the Philadelphia Eagles in 2009, but has floated around the league ever since with stops in Washington, Cleveland and Seattle. After the Seahawks cut him in training camp last season, the 6-foot-5, 327-pounder was out of football. Top Stories Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Keim believes that being away from the game has made the former tackle a hungrier football player.“One of the things that has helped him is the move inside (to guard),” Keim said. “He’s played right tackle quite a bit in the past and had some issues out on the edge, whether it was foot speed or change of direction.“And then, quite frankly, you take a guy’s livelihood away from him and he knows that this may be his last opportunity to shine, and he’s taking full advantage of it.” – / 37 The Arizona Cardinals did a lot of revamping in the offseason.Following a disappointing 5-11 campaign in 2012, new general manager Steve Keim overhauled the roster to a degree few NFL teams have ever seen. Of the 90 players in camp with the Cardinals, 51 of them are brand new to the organization.One of the main focuses for Keim and the Arizona front office was strengthening the offensive line, which was one of the worst in the league last season. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

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LISTEN Steve Keim AZ Cardinals GM

first_imgLISTEN: Steve Keim, AZ Cardinals GM 0 Comments   Share   The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Stanton has missed the last two games because of a knee injury, but according to general manager Steve Keim, there is a chance he could be back for the postseason.“At this point, it’s day-to-day,” Keim told Doug and Wolf Monday on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “We’re extremely hopeful, but I know this: at the end of the day, Tom Reed and our medical staff — we have a lot of confidence in those guys, they do a great job. “And then when you look at Drew — the person and the character that he has and his work ethic — if anybody can get back out there, it’s Drew. We’re hoping for the best and we’ll prepare Ryan and Logan (Thomas) as well.”Stanton was injured in the Cardinals’ 12-6 win over the St. Louis Rams Dec. 11 when he was sacked by defensive tackle Aaron Donald. Reports surfaced last week that Stanton had undergone arthroscopic surgery and had developed an infection in his knee. Of course, if Stanton is to return for the Cardinals’ first postseason game since the 2009 season, he’d have to shake off a good amount of rust. But Keim isn’t worried about that should the veteran be healthy enough to go. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling “I think he’d be very effective, because Drew has a great grasp of our offense, he understands all the concepts, he’s been with (head coach Bruce Arians) for a couple years now,” he said. “On top of that, he’s a great competitor. We’ll see soon and assess the situation.” In his second start of the season Sunday, quarterback Ryan Lindley acquitted himself nicely.Against San Francisco, Lindley completed 23-of-39 passes for 316 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions in a 20-17 loss.It certainly wasn’t a perfect performance by the third-year player out of San Diego State, but it was certainly good enough for the Cardinals to win.However, the popular belief is that Arizona needs a healthy Drew Stanton to have any chance of advancing in the NFC playoffs, which begin Saturday in Charlotte against the Carolina Panthers. Your browser does not support the audio element. Top Stories last_img read more

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Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires

first_img Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The Arizona Cardinals made a number of moves, signing offensive lineman Vinston Painter, claiming linebacker Jeremy Cash off waivers and releasing defensive lineman Josh Mauro Friday.The terms of the deals were not disclosed.In 2017, Painter played in six games for the Cardinals. He was originally signed to the team’s practice squad on Sept. 14 before being moved up. Before his time in Arizona, Painter played five games for the Washington Redskins in 2016 and three for the Cleveland Browns in 2014. He was selected in the sixth round of the 2013 NFL Draft by the Denver Broncos. Top Stories New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) is hit by Arizona Cardinals nose tackle Josh Mauro (97) during the first half of an NFL football game, Monday, Oct. 17, 2016, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri) Cash, who comes over to Arizona from Cleveland, entered the league in 2016 as an undrafted rookie with the Carolina Panthers. The Duke product has nine games under his belt with six special teams tackles. He also spent time on the active rosters with both the New York Giants and Cleveland Browns, but did not see any playing time. At Duke, Cash played in 39 games, collecting 333 tackles, eight sacks, six interceptions and a school record nine forced fumbles.Mauro spent four seasons with the Cardinals, playing in 47 games. The 27-year-old defensive lineman made 75 tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles during his stint with the team. He played in 13 games in 2017. 4 Comments   Share   The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

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