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Posts tagged: sterling international

ERG helped Spokane’s Sterling International develop next ‘bug’ thing

Today's Business section story about the new traps being produced in Spokane by the Rescue company explained how the R&D team used technology to measure bugs' retinal response to different colors. The photo here, by the SR's Dan Pelle, shows Sterling's entomologists Qing-He Zhang and Paul Bryant.

That process is called ERG, electroretinography. It's very cool, and in the Rescue lab, it's done by connecting electric wires to the tiny retinal surfaces of certain insects. By sending different wavelengths of energy to the retina, the tool measures the response.

The full spectrum of visible colors, from red to ultraviolet, is tested and the resulting responses — measured by computers — are used to plot a color pattern that that insect should be responsive to.

Here's the best overall primer on ERG, on Wikipedia.

Stink bugs alert: How and why did this little pest get to be such a pain?

Spokane Valley manufacturer Sterling International, maker of bug traps and the Rescue line of anti-bug systems, got some ink in the Wall Street Journal.

You could easily devour an hour here, reading the article on the onslaught of the nefarious stink bug. Sterling's new stink bug trap is the reason for its inclusion in the story, written by WSJ staffer Heather Haddon. 

Do not neglect the comments here, which highlight the vast range of feelings people have on the business of bug eradication.

Personally, we have nothing against stink bugs. Live and let live…

Photo Credit:

Super publicity: Stinkbug trap company scores online air time

Stephanie Cates, marketing director for Spokane Valley's Sterling International, was a featured guest on a segment today of WSJ's Lunch Break.

Sterling makes the Rescue line of bug killing traps. Cates got a chance to sound off on the company's recently launched stink bug traps. Back East, this is a major concern as stink bugs there have moved across farmlands and into suburban and urban locations.

The jury is still out on whether the Northwest will have to gear up for stink bug war.  Experts have said you'll find stink bugs in our area; they're just not that present yet to constitute a serious crop threat.

Cyan does bugs as heroes; Rescue adds a trap for indoor stink bugs

This may be a coincidence of harmonic proportions. On more or less the same day, both Spokane's Cyan Worlds and Spokane Valley-based Rescue (also known as Sterling International) have debuted major new “bug” products.

Cyan has released a new game app for the Apple platform, called “Bug Chucker.”  And to quote Miley Cyrus, that's pretty cool. It costs 99 cents at the iTunes store. It's a space-battle game involving a spaceship inhabited by bugs who are under attack by the evil Sawz, the robotic minions of Lord Lahguh.

Cyan is the company that innovated videogames by developing the breakthrough titles “Myst,” “Riven” and “Manhole.” More information: here.

Meanwhile, bug-trap maker Rescue just released its new stink bug traps. But wait, there's more.

The new traps come in two varieties, indoor and outdoor. For more than a year Sterling (Rescue) focused on developing an outdoor trap that attracted the pesky stink bugs and left them unable to crawl away.

But over time the company also decided to develop an indoor version (pictured here). As you can see, it's an illuminated model that uses LED lights to attract stink bugs. It will be available in July and cost around $17.99. For information: Recue's stink bug blog.

Company spokeswoman Stephanie Cates said the company realized, while learning more about stink bugs, that they're attracted to some lights. So that led to this indoor baby.

In an email, Cates said: “The indoor stink bug problem is significant. Many people in the mid-Atlantic states report finding stink bugs in their homes — sometimes as many as 30 to 40 per day.” 

OK, our final post on the dang stink bug nemesis

RESCUE!Stephanie Cates, director of marketing and communications at Sterling International (the Spokane Valley-based makers of the Rescue line of bug traps), filled us in by e-mail on the prevalence of stink bugs …. or the lack of stink bugs in our part of the country.

See lower item for the earlier post on Rescue's plans for a stink bug trap this summer.

Here's her comment:

  “They have been discovered in Washington, though not in any great numbers… yet. Aside from it being a nuisance pest in homes, the stink bug can be devastating to farmers.

Interest in and demand for our new product has been most substantial in the Northeastern U.S., especially in PA, MD and NJ.”

Sterling International looks to go after stinkbugs later this year

UPDATING 2:48 p.m. Friday Feb. 25. We went out and sure enough, on Sterling's Facebook page is the full announcement about the company's plans. A stink bug trap at long last, due to be shipped in July.

More than 60 people gathered Friday morning at the Northern Quest Resort and Casino for a daylong session hosted by on using  search and marketing to build a brand and better website. Ed Reese, of Sixth Man Marketing, in Spokane, played a major role in organizing the event.

In the group was Alyssa Ando, marketing coordinator for Sterling International. Sterling is the Spokane Valley manufacturer of the Rescue line of bug traps. 

In a session break, Ando said that Sterling — always looking ahead — has plans to release a trap this year targeting stink bugs.

Of couse, that led to the question, what's a stinkbug?  So we hunted down something like an official explanation of what a stink bug is. We tracked down the National Pest Management Association and its page on stink bugs.

They are six-legged, tiny critters who generally inhabit the Eastern United States.

We wonder if any readers have encountered them here?  IF so, let us know through comments or messages to:

You can also message Ando at @andoa on Twitter.

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The Spokesman-Review business team follows economic development in Spokane and the Inland Northwest.

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Alison Boggs (@alisonboggs) Online Producer Alison Boggs posts and manages content on and its social networking accounts.

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Scott Maben Scott Maben is a Deputy City Editor who covers North Idaho news and higher education.

Addy Hatch is the city editor, and formerly was business editor.

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