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Dr. Jennifer Gillett was recently elected by
the Senate to serve on the Joint Senate-
Presidential Sustainability Committee. This
committee promotes sustainability within the
University and in the University's relations
with the larger community and seeks to
enhance the University's standing as a global
leader in sustainability. It assesses the
progress of the University of Florida's
sustainability efforts as compared to national
and international best practices and pursues
their implementation when appropriate.
Drs. Eileen Buss (Campus), Ron Cave (Ft.
Pierce REC), William Kern (Ft. Lauderdale
REC) and Catharine Mannion (Homestead
REC) all received tenure and promotion to
Associate Professor. Dr. Heather
McAuslane was promoted to full Professor.
Dr. Norman Leppla received a Senior
Dr. Billy Crow was elected to the IFAS
Faculty Advisory Council.
Drs. Jaret Daniels and Rob Meagher
(USDA-CMAVE) were featured in a Herald
Tribune online video at http://www.
gory=NEWS 10. They were interviewed
about Papilio demoleus, an invasive butterfly
species with origins in Southeast Asia which
could cause damage to nursery settings
across Florida. To view the video, click on
"Small bug could cause damage."
Dr. Mike Scharf was offered and accepted
the Insect Molecular Toxicologist position.
On 1 July, he "joined" the department as an
Assistant Professor with a 70% research and
30% teaching appointment. Mike originally
came to UF in 2004 as an Assistant Research
Scientist. He headed a project funded by
Procter & Gamble to characterize new
classes of volatile insecticide chemistry.
Currently, funded research in the toxicology
laboratory focuses on volatile insecticide
chemistry, termite semiochemicals and
developmental biology, termite cellulase
biochemistry, termite gut metagenomics, and
insecticide resistance in urban pests. In
addition, Mike assumes Dr. Simon Yu's
insect toxicology course, complete with
lecture and lab components, during spring
semester every year. Other continuing
members of the toxicology laboratory
include senior biological scientists Drs.
Xuguo (Joe) Zhou and Cheol Song,
biological scientist Sam Nguyen, and Ph.D.
student Matt Tarver. A second Ph.D.
student, Ameya Gondhalekar, joins the
toxicology lab this fall. Originally from the
Chicago area, Mike has officially adapted to
life in Gainesville and is looking forward to
many prosperous years and great interactions
More than one hundred forest entomologists
from across the South met on Jekyll Island,
Georgia, 23-26 July, for the 50th anniversary
Southern Forest Insect Work Conference.
Among those attending was Dr. John Foltz
who concluded 15 years of service as
secretary-treasurer for the group. A poster,
"African honey bees in wooded areas," co-
authored with MK O'Malley and Dr. Jamie
Ellis, was on display throughout the
conference. It may also be seen in the south
corridor outside Ellis's lab.
Dr. Gomaa Abou-Elella, Plant Protection
Department, National Research Centre,
Cairo, Egypt, arrived on 2 August to spend
six months in Dr. Marjorie A. Hoy's
laboratory. Dr. Abou-Elella is an acarologist.
Dr. Bob Woodruff, Emeritus Taxonomist &
Curator, Florida State Collection of
Arthropods and an Adjunct Professor with
the department, is making his fourth insect
collecting trip to Guatemala from 27 August
- 12 September. He will camp in the field
most of the time with Jose Monzon, a former
student of Dr. Jack Schuster (Ph.D. '75)
who is head of Entomology & Ecotourism at
Universidad del Valle in Guatemala City.
The following local entomologists have been
on one or more of Jose's expeditions: Dr.
John Heppner, Dr. Charles Covell, Bruce
Sutton, Dr. G.B. Edwards. You can contact
Dr. Woodruff at BobsGems@aol.com.
James Kocher, Senior Teaching Lab
Specialist, recently left our department for a
teaching position at Hoggetowne Charter
Middle School in Gainesville. Kocher
worked on distance education software
modules while he was with us. Before non-
residents laugh at the name "Hogtown," they
should know that Gainesville was called
Hogtown a long time ago, and that Hogtown
Creek runs through the middle of the city and
occasionally floods during heavy rains.
New officers for the department's
Entomology and Nematology Student
Organization are: President: Andres
Sandoval, Vice-President: John Herbert,
Treasurer: Christian Salcedo, Secretary:
Delano Lewis, Historian: Margie Pfiester
Ph.D. student Susan Gruner was featured in
the UF/IFAS news release "Of Maggots and
Murder," about her research. See the
07/27/07 entry on Pest Alert at
Dr. Pauline Lawrence's laboratory hosted
two high school students for seven weeks
this summer as part of the UF Science
Student Training Program (SSTP). Ph.D.
student Luis Matos served as their principal
mentor. Chantel Johnson (Miami, FL)
determined whether the Diachasmimorpha
longicaudata entomopoxvirus (D1EPV) is
confined to the poison gland or occurs
throughout the body of its parasitic wasp
adult, while Ashis Patel (Newark, NJ) tested
the hypothesis that D1EPV is inherited
through the wasp's egg. The students
presented posters of their work at the SSTP
Professors Reception. Their posters may be
viewed outside Room 2218.
Hall DW, Branham MA. (2007). Banded
net-winged beetle, Calopteron discrepans
(Newman). Featured Creatures. EENY-413.
Grissell EE. (2007). Scoliid wasps of
Florida. Featured Creatures. EENY-409.
Hall DW. (July 2007). Eastern dobsonfly,
Corydalus cornutus (Linnaeus). Featured
Creatures. EENY-414. http://creatures.ifas.
Gandolfo D, McKay F, Medal JC, Cuda JP.
2007. Open-field host specificity test of
Gratiana boliviana (Chrysomelidae), a
biocontrol agent of tropical soda apple in the
USA. Florida Entomologist 90: 223-228.
Medal J, Bustamante N. 2007. Weed
biological control in Latin America. In
Proceedings XX Congreso Venezolano de
Entomologia, San Cristobal, Venezuela.
Universidad Nacional Experimental del
Meetings and Presentations
Dr. Julio Medal attended the 10th
International Symposium on Biological
Control in Brasilia, Brazil, 30 June 4 July.
Medal gave the poster presentation
"Biological control of Solanum tampicense
in Florida: Field surveys and host-specificity
tests." The presentation was co-authored by
Nikary Bustamante, Dr. Juan Barrera
(Ecosur, Mexico), Jose Monzon (Museo
Entomologico, Universidad de San Carlos,
Guatemala). Oscar Avila (MAG-Costa Rica),
and Dr. James Cuda.
Dr. Julio Medal and Nikary Bustamante
were invited to give the opening talk on
"Biological control of invasive plants in
Latin-America" at the XX Venezuela
Entomological Symposium held in San
Cristobal, 22 26 July. After the meeting
Medal and Bustamante conducted a
one-week field survey in Venezuela
searching for natural enemies of wetland
nightshade (Solanum tampicense) and
turkeyberry (Solanum torvum), invasive
weeds in Florida.
Ph.D. student Rosy Gill participated in the
90th Annual meeting of Florida
Entomological Society (FES) held in
Sarasota, 15-18 July. She presented the
poster "Susceptibility and fitness cost of
cotton bollworm, Helicoverpa armigera
(Hiibner) associated with Cry 1Ac toxin of
Graduate student Gaurav Goyal received
2nd prize in the FES Ph.D. student paper
competition for his talk "Establishing the
identity of corn silk fly."
Graduate student Hardev Sandhu presented
a paper, "Life cycle of lesser cornstalk borer,
Elasmopalpus lignosellus (Zeller)
(Lepidoptera: Pyralidae) on sugarcane" in the
FES Ph.D. student paper competition. Co-
authors were Drs. Gregg Nuessly, Susan
Webb, Ron Cherry, and Robert Gilbert.
Dr. James P. Cuda attended the FES
meeting and organized and moderated a
symposium in collaboration with Adam
Silagyi, USDA, APHIS, PPQ on "Invasive
species: update on new pests, early detection
and management strategies." He also
presented the paper "Establishment of the
UF/IFAS Invasive Species Coordinating
Council," which was co-authored by Drs.
Lance Osborne, Chuck Jacoby and Ken
Dr. James Cuda was invited to participate in
the 2007 Everglades Invasive Species
Summit held in Miami, FL, 25-27 July.
Cuda, who is a member of the Research
Committee, facilitated the Research
Workshop in collaboration with Paul Pratt,
USDA, ARS. Cuda also was asked to serve
on the Rapid Identification and Assessment
Team where he will be responsible for
identification of new insects and
invertebrates invading the Everglades.
Drs. Julio Medal and James Cuda received
an extension of the USDA-APHIS grant
($180,000) to continue during 2007 the
"Implementation of Biological Control of
Tropical Soda Apple."
Ph.D. student Rosy Gill received a $200
IFAS travel grant to attend the recent FES
Ph.D. students Gaurav Goyal and Hardev
Sandhu received $100 FES travel grants to
assist in traveling to FES meeting. They also
received $100 FES research mini grants.
The latest Web site to receive our Best of the
Bugs award is the Online Guide to Insect
Songs. This site lets the user see and hear 76
species of U.S. crickets, katydids, and
cicadas. A separate window for each species
displays a stunning photograph of the
songster, the wave form of the song, and a
verbal description of the song. The species
windows is accessible from a master list or
from a photographic key to families, species
groups, and species. Find this site and others
Free to a good home! Scores of back issues
of the Florida Entomologist are waiting in
the lunch area for you to adopt them. Many
of the issues date back to the late 60s, early
The Homerus swallowtail is the Western
Hemisphere's largest butterfly, but
University of Florida researchers say its
numbers are so small that conservation and
captive breeding efforts are needed to save
the insect, found only in two parts of
Jamaica. See the story from the 08/09/07 link
on Pest Alert at http://pestalert.ifas.ufl.edu/.
The thing called a chigger
Is really no bigger
Than the smaller end of a pin.
But the lump that it raises
Just itches like blazes
And that's where the rub sets in.
- Attributed to entomologist H.B.
Hungerford, University of Kansas
Thomas Fasulo is the newsletter editor. You
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Thomas Fasulo codes the HTML version.
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