August 2011

Faculty News

UF/IFAS issued a listing of entomology and nematology deparmental faculty publications, grants and teaching activities for 2010. To view the PDF file, click here.

Dr. Daniel Hahn received the North American College and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) Teacher Fellow Award during the 2011 NACTA Conference in June. This award recognizes international committment to, and excellence in, college teaching and scholarship of teaching and learning.

Drs. Thomas Chouvenc and Nan-Yao Su were featured in a UF/IFAS news release on termites and biological control. The story was based on a review of termite biological control methods that appeared in the journal Biological Control.

The University of Puerto Rico, in cooperation with USDA-APHIS, has a postdoctoral position for implementation of biological control projects against invasive pests in Puerto Rico.

Dr. Carl Barfield's retirement was mentioned in the Gainesville Sun as part of an article highlighting his annual Bug Fair, an extra credit portion of a class he taught.

Drs. Oscar Liburd, Gregg Nuessly and William Overholt received promotions to Professor.

Drs. Daniel Hahn, and Phillip Kaufman received promotions to Associate Professor as well as tenure.

Dr. Craig Roubos, who was working in a postdoctoral poisition in Dr. Oscar Liburd's laboratory, accepted a position with the Department of Entomology at Michigan State University. Dr. Roubos will leave our department during the week of August 15th.

Student News

Ph.D. student Jared Ali, from Dr. Lukas Stelinskis lab at UF/IFAS Citrus Research and Education Center, is the recipient of the 2011 Pauline O. Lawrence Scholarship in Physiology/Biochemistry/Toxicology. Jared also won the first place prize in the Ph.D. student oral presentation competition at the recent 2011 Florida Entomological Society meeting. Jared successfully defended his Ph.D. in July and will leave this August for a post-doctoral position in insect-plant interactions with Dr. Anurag Agrawal at the Cornell University Department of Entomology.

Three M.S. students from the University of Exeter, United Kingdom, visited Dr. Christine W. Miller's laboratory during March July 2011. Aitor Alvarez-Fernandez, Iain Gordon, and Katherine Short all completed the research portion of their M.S. degrees here in our department and were co-advised by Dr. Miller (with Prof. Allen J. Moore, University of Exeter). The titles of their theses are:

Graduate students Teresia Nyoike and Sara Brennan both received second prize in the Ph.D. and M.S., respectively, oral student competitions at the recent Florida Entomological Society Meeting.


Mekete T, Reynolds K, Lopez-Nicora HD, Gray ME, Niblack TL. 2011. Distribution and diversity of root-lesion nematode (Pratylenchus spp.) associated with Miscanthus x giganteus and Panicum virgatum used for biofuels, and species identification in a multiplex polymerase chain reaction. Nematology 13: 673–686.

Mekete T, Reynolds K, Lopez-Nicora HD, Gray ME, Niblack TL. 2011. Plant-Parasitic nematodes are potential pathogens of Miscanthus giganteus and Panicum virgatum used for biofuels. Plant Disease 95: 413–418.

Showman A, Connelly CR. (August 2011). Red-tailed flesh fly, Sarcophaga haemorrhoidalis (Fallen). Featured Creatures. EENY-495.

Kostromytska OS, Buss EA. 2011. Tomarus subtropicus (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) larval feeding habits. Florida Entomologist 94: 164-171.

Epstein DL, Stelinski LL, Miller JR, Grieshop MJ, Gut LJ. 2011. Effects of reservoir dispenser height on efficacy of mating disruption of codling moth (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) in apple. Pest Management Science 67: 975-979.

Buckley K, Zettel Nalen CM, Ellis JD. (August 2011). Sweat bees (Hymenoptera: Halictidae). Featured Creatures. EENY-499.

Graham JR, Ellis JD, Carroll MJ, Teal PEA. (2011) Aethina tumida (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae) attraction to volatiles produced by Apis mellifera (Hymenoptera: Apidae) and Bombus impatiens (Hymenoptera: Apidae) colonies. Apidologie 42: 326-336.

Tamayo D. (August 2011). Dark rover ant, Brachymyrmex patagonicus Mayr. Featured Creatures. EENY-498.

Rhodes EM, Liburd OE. 2011. Flower thrips (Thysanoptera:Thripidae) dispersal from alternate hosts into southern highbush blueberry (Ericales: Ericaceae) plantings. Florida Entomologist 94: 311-320.

Meetings and Presentations

Dr. Eileen Buss attended and moderated a session on "Extension Turfgrass Entomology Programs" at the National Turfgrass Entomology Workshop in Boise, Idaho, 27-28 July.

Dr. Christine Miller attended the 2011 Behavior Conference at Indiana University on July 28th. She presented the paper "Is this a good neighborhood to raise kids? An insect consults both conspecifics and heterospecifics." Three of her graduate students also presented at the conference:


Thank you to those members and friends of the department who participated in our July and early August outreach activities:

The following are programs and outreach events currently scheduled for August:
  • 10 August: Presentation on insects at Gainesville Creative Kids for their "Zoorific! Animal Camp"
  • The live critters are always a hit with children and adults alike. The critters are available for you to check out should you be leading an outreach event. We have doubles of our most popular critters, as well as various native insect species depending on the time of year. We have recently added large wood and plexiglas cages for viewing our native orb weaving spiders. There is one traveling cage and one larger static cage. If you lead an outreach, please be sure to fill out a documentation form so your event can be included in the newsletter and so that we can log all outreach events. If you would like to schedule an event or have any outreach questions, go to the Outreach pages on our Bug Club Web site and contact us. - Dale A. Halbritter, Outreach Coordinator

    2011 Entomology Field Camp

    During 20-24 June, the Outreach Committee presented the second annual Entomology Field Camp, and included 21 students from the 3rd through 7th grades. This year, the day camp featured a forensic entomology theme, "The Black Bear Murder Mystery," with students investigating a wildlife crime for the Fish and Wildlife Service. In addition, student campers also experienced many other aspects of entomological science. Click here for more details and to view images.

    The Summer 2011 edition of Our Town, a magazine promoting Gainesville, contained a six page article "This ain't your parents summer camp: Unique alternatives to traditional summer camps." The article contained a description of the Entomology Field Camp as well as full page of photographs from last year's camp. The article begins on page 98 of the Gainesville edition, if you would like to review the online article.

    Newsletter Minutiae

    Thomas Fasulo is the newsletter editor. Departmental faculty, staff, students and alumni can submit news anytime to Issues usually are published by early mid-month. Submit items for an issue by the 7th of that month.

    UF-Bugnews-L listserv subscribers receive notices when issues are posted on the newsletter Web site at, which has instructions for subscribing and unsubscribing. Pam Howell and Nancy Sanders review the newsletter for errors. Thomas Fasulo does the HTML coding.

    In the last 12 months, the newsletter Web site recorded 139,962 page views.

    August 2011.