Sponsored by Lane Powell
Home Archives October 2007 Mighty mite breeder sets up shop in Klamath Falls

Mighty mite breeder sets up shop in Klamath Falls

| Print |  Email
Monday, October 01, 2007

KLAMATH FALLS Spider mites can wreak havoc on crops, wiping out millions of dollars in agricultural income one tiny bite at a time.

Which is why Skip Maltby, a former aerospace engineer from Southern California, got into the predator-mite business.  

“They’re really green and they’re more effective than pesticides,” Maltby says of the seven varieties of predator mites — all with a voracious appetite for spider mites — that he raises in greenhouses and sells by the shaker-full to farmers.

Problem was, because the predator mite breeding brothel needed to be kept at a balmy 90 degrees at all times, Maltby was getting stuck with sky-high propane bills.

Enter Tracy Liskey. The Klamath Falls-area farmer was already leasing out his geothermal well-heated greenhouses to other entrepreneurs (one fine-tuning a biodiesel still, the other tending  pools of tropical fish). A cheap, 90-degree greenhouse was no sweat at Liskey Farms.

“The Climate Trust had never worked with something so unique.”

TREY SENN
KLAMATH COUNTY ECONOMIC
DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION

So when Maltby started poking around for the cash he needed to start a Klamath operation, he met Trey Senn, executive director of the Klamath County Economic Development Association, who was carefully tending his Sustainable Klamath project — a push to market the region as the place to do green business. He saw potential in Maltby’s company, Biotactics, and quickly got him in touch with The Climate Trust.

The Portland-based Climate Trust, a nonprofit battling global warming, had money to invest in emissions-reduction projects. They crunched the numbers and figured Biotactics’ use of geothermal energy would keep 25,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere.

The trust wrote the first check for $130,000, and other agencies ponied up. Maltby, his move-in costs covered, is busily breeding.

CHRISTINA WILLIAMS


Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

More Articles

Video: The 100 Best Survey

News
Thursday, August 28, 2014

100-best-logo-2015 500pxw-1OB Research Editor Kim Moore shares some pointers about the 100 Best Companies to Work For survey.


Read more...

Podcast: Interview with Pete Friedes

Contributed Blogs
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

082714-thumb friedesbookTom Cox interviews Pete Friedes, author of "The 2R Manager," about becoming a Best Boss.


Read more...

Community colleges and sustainability

Contributed Blogs
Thursday, July 31, 2014
sustainabilityBY MARY SPILDE | OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR

Faced with the aftermath of the “great recession,” increasing concern about the environment and dwindling family wage jobs, we have some very important choices to make about our future.


Read more...

Back to School

September 2014
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
BY LEE VAN DER VOO

By now we’ve all read the headlines: Starbucks is giving away free degrees. Except it isn’t.


Read more...

College Hacker

September 2014
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
BY KLINT FINLEY

Treehouse CEO Ryan Carson builds a 21st-century trade school.


Read more...

Podcast: Interview with Steve Balzac

Contributed Blogs
Tuesday, August 19, 2014

082014BalzacBY TOM COX | OB BLOGGER

Tom Cox interviews Steve Balzac, author of "Organizational Psychology for Managers."


Read more...

A Good Leap Forward

September 2014
Wednesday, August 27, 2014
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Agriculture businesses ramp up to meet international demand as workforce and succession challenges loom.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS