Postdoc Torsten Schoneberg and Assistant Professor Kelly Hamby work with MSU & USDA to explore the use of microbial sterilants as a management tool for Spotted-Wing Drosophila infestations. Check out recently published paper on their research, “Exploring the Efficacy andMechanisms of a Crop Sterilant for Reducing Infestation by Spotted-Wing Drosophila (Diptera: Drosophilidae)”
Study led by Professor Emerita Barbara Thorne looks into the origins of conehead termites in Florida. Publication featured in Entomology Today.
“Our results show that human transport of infested materials is a significant risk for spreading populations of invasive conehead termites,” Thorne says. “The operational application of this result is that, beginning immediately upon discovery of invasive coneheads (or any species in the genus Nasutitermes), alerts and precautions must be implemented to prevent movement of potentially infested materials to a new location.”
Read full article here>>
Cato A, ^ Afful E, Nayak MK and Phillips TW. Evaluation of Knockdown Bioassay Methods to Assess Phosphine Resistance in the Red Flour Beetle, Tribolium castaneum (Herbst) (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae). Insects. 2019.
Dively GP, Huang F, Oyediran I, Burd T and Morsello S. Evaluation of gene flow in structured and seed blend refuge systems of non-Bt and Bt corn. Journal of Pest Science. 2019. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10340-019-01126-4
Thompson BM, Bodart J and Gruner DS. Community resistance to an invasive forest insect–fungus mutualism. Ecosphere. 2019. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/ecs2.2609
^Lewis MT, and Hamby K.A. Differential impacts of yeasts on feeding behavior and development in larval Drosophila suzukii (Diptera:Drosophilidae). Scientific Reports. 2019. (manuscript accepted)
Serrano-Brañas CI, Espinosa-Chávez B and ^MacCracken SA. Teredolites trace fossils in log-grounds from the Cerro del Pueblo Formation (Upper Cretaceous) of the state of Coahuila, Mexico. Journal of South American Earth Sciences. 2019. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsames.2019.102316
Niu K, Xiang L, Jin Y…[& 10 others including Wang J]. Identification of LARK as a novel and conserved G-quadruplex binding protein in invertebrates and vertebrates. Nucleic Acids Research. 2019. DOI: DOI: https://doi.org/10.1093/nar/gkz484
Shen C, Zhang Y, Xia D, Wang J and Tang Q. Sensilla on the Antennal Funiculus of the Maize Weevil, Sitophilus zeamais (Motschulsky) (Coleoptera: Curculionidae): A Morphological Investigation. The Coleopterists Bulletin. 2019. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1649/0010-065X-73.2.443
Talks and Presentations
^Abell KJ, ^Andrade RB, Duan JJ, Gruner DS and Shrewsbury PM. “Do treated ash trees confer a protective ‘silhouette’ from emerald ash borer for neighboring trees? Joint meeting of IUFRO Working Parties: Population dynamics and integrated management of forest insects, Quebec City, Canada. 2019.
Gruner DS, Rankin EEW, Knowlton JL, Flaspohler DJ, Giardina CP, and Fukami T. “Does forest fragment size mediate the impacts of introduced rodent predators? Foraging behavior of Hawaiian birds and their arthropod resources.” 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation, Antananarivo, Madagascar.2019.
^Jayd K, R MacKenzie, M Apwong and DS Gruner. “Mangrove herbivory across a salinity gradient.” Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of America, St. Louis, MO.2019.
Pick L. "What is RNA interference, and how will it affect the future of food?" Tech Talk. USDA, Washington DC. 2019
^Tielens EK and Gruner DS. "Insect communities across a space for time chronosequence converge over time: analyzing patterns and drivers of beta-diversity on Hawai‘i." Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America, Louisville, KY.2019.
Bold ENTM Faculty; ^ENTM current/former graduate student or post-doc; *ENTM research staff
This summer, Lisa Kuder (PhD Student, vanEngelsdorp lab) wrapped up her research project with The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) titled, “Evaluating Integrated Roadside Vegetation Management (IRVM) Techniques to Improve Pollinator Habitat.” This three-year field study had two main goals: to determine which vegetation management tactics best maximize quality floral resources for pollinators in the Northeast, and to assess how those different regimes affect regional bee populations. The findings show that managing roadsides via selective herbicide use (SH) and annual fall mow (fall mow) can significantly increase floral diversity and bee abundance compared to a traditional frequent mowing (turf) regime. While differences between treatments – SH and fall mow – were detected, they were not significant. Bee diversity, which accounts for both abundance and the evenness of species in a given area, was mainly determined by site/surrounding landscape not treatment and was the sole significant factor. Given that floral abundance and diversity, as well as bee abundance, were increased under SH and fall mow compared to turf plots, both Integrated Roadside Vegetation Management (IRVM) practices have shown great potential in supporting pollinators.
The final report can be read here>>
Congratulations to the vanEngelsdorp Lab for their work on the 13th Annual Honey Bee Loss Survey. The 13th Annual BIP Honey Bee Colony Loss Survey was released in June. The survey showed that U.S. beekeepers lost almost 40% of their bee colonies last winter, the largest loss recorded in 13 years. Researchers are using this data to establish best management practices that will help beekeepers improve the health of bees.
Thanks to the Colleges’ communication teams the survey gained widespread media coverage. Read the CMNS press release here>>
Other notable media mentions include: The Washington Post, The Baltimore Sun, NPR's The Salt, The Guardian, The San Francisco Chronicle, Kojo Nnamdi, ABC7 and FOX5.
Congratulations to Entomology's Brian Lovett (Ph.D. student, St. Leger Lab) and Professor Ray St. Leger on their new research paper, "Transgenic Metarhizium rapidly kills mosquitoes in a malaria-endemic region of Burkina Faso" published in Science. Their study tested the effectiveness of genetically modified fungus in controlling malaria-carrying mosquitoes outside a laboratory. Their tests demonstrated that the transgenic fungus caused mosquito populations to drop below viable levels within two generations.
Read the CMNS press release here>>
Other notable media mentions include NPR & Science News.
New paper, co-authored by UMD Entomology Lecturer Bretton Kent, describes the dental transition between megalodon ancestor, Carcharocles chubutensis, and Carcharocles megalodon. The study titled, "The transition between Carcharocles chubutensis and Carcharocles megalodon (Otodontidae, Chondrichthyes): lateral cusplet loss through time", was published this week in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.
Patricia L. Graham, Research Assistant Scientist and Entomology colleagues W. Ray Anderson, Elizabeth A. Brandt, JieXiang (PhD 17’, UMD MOCB, Pick Lab) and Leslie Pick, have a new paper out in Developmental Biology. Check out “Dynamic expression of Drosophila segmental cell surface-encoding genes and their pair-rule regulators” here: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ydbio.2019.01.015
UMD Scientists, Postdoctoral Research Associate Alina Avanesyan and Professor William Lamp, assessed native Hawaiian plant responses to leafhopper injury. Read findings in their recent paper titled, "Short-Term Physiological Response of a Native Hawaiian Plant, Hibiscus arnottianus, to Injury by the Exotic Leafhopper, Sophonia orientalis (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae)", published in Environmental Entomology.
A new study published by UMD Extension Agent, Alan Leslie ( PhD 14’, UMD ENTM) & Entomology Professor, William Lamp in the Journal of Aquatic Sciences showed that burrowing macroinvertebrates can alter dynamics of phosphorus storage and release in drainage ditches.
Check out full paper, “Burrowing macroinvertebrates alter phosphorus dynamics in drainage ditch sediments” at https://doi.org/10.1007/s00027-019-0621-8
Congratulations to Entomology researchers Samuel Ramsey, Dennis vanEngelsdorp, David Hawthorne, & their colleagues on their new paper, “Varroa destructor feeds primarily on honey bee fat body tissue and not hemolymph,” published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The research provides new details on the feeding habits of the parasitic mite, Varroa destructor, which is one of the major threats to honey bee colonies worldwide.
Read the full CMNS press release here.
Congratulations to Entomology's Anahí Espíndola, co-author of a new research paper, “Predicting plant conservation priorities on a global scale,” published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Anahi co-developed a machine learning algorithm that predicts which plant species may be eligible for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Researchers hope this algorithm will help prioritize conservation efforts.
Read the CMNS press release here>>
Other notable media mentions include WIRED & Smithsonian.
Professor David Hawthorne has a paper out in Nature Sustainability titled, “Antibiotic and pesticide susceptibility and the Anthropocene operating space.”
This first assessment of planetary boundaries for antibiotic and pesticide resistance shows several boundaries have already been crossed. “Based on current trends in antibiotic, insecticide and herbicide resistance, we conclude that the states of all six assessed variables are beyond safe zones, with three variables surpassed regionally or globally.”
Find full press release on SESYNC’s news page.
UMD researchers Hanna Kahl, Alan Leslie and Professor Cerruti Hooks assess the effects of cover crops on arthropod communities. Read their findings in their recent paper, "Effects of Red Clover Living Mulch on Arthropod Herbivores and Natural Enemies, and Cucumber Yield", published in Annals of the Entomological Society of America.
Peter Coffey , University of Maryland Cooperative Extension Agricultural Science Agent, ENTM Graduate Student (Hooks Lab), has a paper out in Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment.
Check out full article, "Careers in Cooperative Extension" at
Professor Dr. Paula M. Shrewsbury has a paper out in Forest. Her research compares methods for monitoring establishment of the Emerald Ash Borer.
Check out full article, "Comparing Methods for Monitoring Establishment of the Emerald Ash Borer (Agrilus planipennis, Coleoptera: Buprestidae) Egg Parasitoid Oobius agrili (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae) in Maryland, USA" at
ENTM Postdoc, Dr. Alina Avanesyan has a review paper out in Plants. This review looks into the feeding preferences of acridid grasshoppers on native vs. introduced plants.
Check out full article, "Should I Eat or Should I Go? Acridid Grasshoppers and Their Novel Host Plants: Potential for Biotic Resistance" at
Dr. Megan Fritz has a new publication out in Insect Systematics and Diversity.
Check out full article, “Opening the Door to the Past: Accessing Phylogenetic, Pathogen, and Population Data From Museum Curated Bees” at
The Pick Lab contributed to a new paper published on October 10th in the New England Journal of Medicine (link below), specifically to disease testing in the model organism Drosophila melanogaster. Contributing authors from Pick Lab: Leslie Pick (professor & Chair), Alys Jarvela (postdoc ENTM) & Bijal Kikani (Undergraduate Biological Sciences Major). The paper was covered by the Associated Press.
Publication: "Effect of Genetic Diagnosis on Patients with Previously Undiagnosed Disease"
Congratulations to Brett Kent on his latest publication, “The Geology and Vertebrate Paleontology of Calvert Cliffs, Maryland, USA”, published on Sept. 25th in Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology.
Over 100 years have passed since the last comprehensive review of fossils from Calvert Cliffs was published. This new publication updates us on the new discoveries found among the cliffs. Within this multi-authored volume, “Bretton W. Kent describes the cartilaginous fish fauna, consisting of 54 species—3 ratfishes, 39 sharks, and 12 skates and rays—a fauna rich in large predatory sharks and large neritic rays. In an addendum to Kent’s chapter, he and David J. Ward describe a new species of giant thresher shark with serrated teeth.”
Read the full release here.
UMD Scientists, Heather H. Disque, Kelly A. Hamby , Aditi Dubey , Christopher Taylor and Galen P. Dively, assessed the effects of clothianidin‐treated seed on arthropod communities. Read their findings in their recent paper, "Effects of clothianidin‐treated seed on the arthropod community in a mid‐Atlantic no‐till corn agroecosystem", published in Pest Management Science.
Dr. Leo Shapiro has a new publication out in Madroño, the quarterly publication of the California Botanical Society.
Check out full article, “The Identity Of Trentepohlia Algae (Chlorophyta: Trentepohliales) From Point Lobos State Reserve And The San Francisco Region, California” at