June 2005

Faculty News

Three members of our faculty received promotions which will be effective July 1st. Both Dr. William Overholt (Ft. Pierce REC) and Dr. Oscar Liburd (Gainesville) were promoted to Associate Professor. Mr. Thomas Fasulo (Gainesville) was promoted to Senior Associate In Entomology.

In Fasulo's case, his promotion is an historic first as the "Senior Associate In" position was only created by the University of Florida in July 2003. Tom decided not to submit his package in 2003 as he only had a few months to try and remember what he had done for the previous ten years necessary for the promotion package. In 2004, Tom had to use the Web to track down meeting dates and publication titles. Then Myrna Litchfield had to check with the university personnel office to see who could vote on this type of position and even that office took some time to decide on it. However, Tom is still not important enough to have a corner office, although he does have two plants. Tom says he is looking forward to his next promotion: "Retired Senior Associate In."

Dr. Bill Kern, of the Ft. Lauderdale REC, was recently on TV, but mostly all he did was wave. Only a selected few caught his appearance as the "program" he appeared on was just broadcasting to the seminar room. Bill participated in a trial run of a video-conferencing system and "attended" the May faculty meeting on the Gainesville campus so the department could see how the online video-conference worked. The department hopes to transmit Gainesville faculty meetings on a regular basis, and encourage two-way statewide participation.

Dr. Gene Gerberg, who recently fell and broke his femur, is now at home after a stay in the hospital. Gene says that he is recuperating quickly, gets around on a walker and wishes to thank all who called and/or visited him at the hospital.

Dr. James P. Cuda was selected for inclusion in the 23rd edition of Who's Who in the World, which is scheduled for publication in November 2006.

The Departmental Retreat to discuss the upcoming review is still scheduled for June 28 and 29. This replaces the regularly scheduled June faculty meeting.

Student News

Vanessa Andalo Mendes de Carvalho, who is from Brazil, is visiting the department for six months. She is studying the taxonomy of entomopathogenic nematodes with Dr. Khuong B. Nguyen.


Jennifer Anderson, a former Masters degree student of Dr. Jim Maruniak, recently obtained her Ph.D. from The John Hopkins School of Public Health.

Dr. Richard Lobinske recently began work as Superintendent of the Leon County (Florida) Mosquito Control District. Richard can be reached at LobinskeR@leoncountyfl.gov.

The Brazilian Society for Biological Control, SICONBIOL, had its ninth annual meeting in Recife, Brazil on 15-19 May 2005. The following alumni attended the meeting:

Dr. Eliana Fontes (81-84 with Dr. Dale Habeck) is a Research Entomologist at EMBRAPA Cenargen, Brasilia, working on insect ecology in transgenic plants.

Dr. Steven Naranjo (80-83 with Dr.Jerry Stimac) is a Research Entomologist at the USDA Western Cotton Research Laboratory in Phoenix, Arizona.

Dr. Flavio Moscardi (75-79 with Dr. Carl Barfield) is a Research Scientist at EMBRAPA Soja, Londrina, working on baculovirus production and application in soybean. This is the world's largest biological control program using baculoviruses on 2 million hectares of soybean.

Paulo Vilarinhos, M.S., (89-91 with Drs. Don Hall and Jim Maruniak) is the Latin American representative for Valent BioSciences (Chicago, IL), which produces Bt insecticides.

Marcos Faria, M.S., (95-96 with Dr. Drion Boucias) is a researcher with EMBRAPA Cenargen, Brasilia. He will soon be going to Cornell for his Ph.D.


Cuda JP, Zeller MC, Thomas MC. (May 2005). Ligustrum weevil, Ochyromera ligustri Warner. UF/IFAS Featured Creatures. EENY-343. http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/creatures/orn/shrubs/ligustrum_weevil.htm

Fleming TH, Serrano D, Nassar J. 2005. Dynamics of a subtropical population of the zebra longwing butterfly (Heliconius charithonia (Nymphalidae)). Florida Entomologist 88:169-179.

Fasulo TR. (May 2005). Yellowmargined leaf beetle, Microtheca ochroloma Stål. UF/IFAS Featured Creatures. EENY-348. http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/creatures/veg/leaf/yellowmargined_leaf_beetle.htm

Alto BW, Griswold MW, Lounibos LP. "Habitat complexity and sex-dependent predation of mosquito larvae in containers." Oecologia. (in press).

Rutledge CR. (May 2005). Biting midges, Culicoides spp. UF/IFAS Featured Creatures. EENY-349. http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/creatures/aquatic/biting_midges.htm

Nguyen KB, Tesfamariam M, Gozel U, Gaugler R, Adams BJ. 2005. Steinernema yirgalememse n. sp. (Rhabditida: Steinernematidae) from Ethiopia. Nematology 6:839-856.

Dunford JC, Somma LA, Serrano D. 2005. Earwigflies in the Great Smokies. ATBI Quarterly, All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory Newsletter (Great Smokey Mountains Natl. Park), 6:1. (Available at http://www.dlia.org/atbi/quarterly.shtml - under 2005 Spring)


Dr. Don Dickson, Dr. Jimmy Rich, and graduate student Jon Hamill received a $342,910 grant from CSREES (Integrated Pest Management: Methyl Bromide Transitions) titled "Improved sustainability of vegetable production systems by reducing fumigant rates using low permeability film and resistant cultivars."

Onour Moeri, a graduate student studying weed biocontrol with Dr. Jim Cuda, received a grant for $2,000 from Dynamic Aviation to attend and participate in the FAO/IAEA International Conference on Area-Wide Control of Insect Pests: Integrating the Sterile Insect and Related Nuclear and other Techniques in Vienna, Austria, 9-13 May 2005.

Graduate student Emily Saarinen received a $300 MOPS grant from the Graduate Student Council. This money will be used for materials needed in her research on the state-endangered Miami blue butterfly.

Meeting and Presentations

Dr. Jimmy R. Rich recently returned from the Philippines where he gave two presentations on nematode management in tomato and ornamentals at the annual Philippines Phytopathological Society (PPS) meeting. In addition, he assisted in introducing the PPS Website http://www.philphytopath.org/) created in his laboratory in cooperation with PPS. For this effort, the Society awarded Dr. Rich a Plaque of Appreciation.

Dr. Julio Medal was invited by the Organizers of the 9th Symposium on Biological Control in Recife, Brazil, 15-19 May to give a presentation on "Perspectives and Limitations for Biological Control of Invasive Plants in Latin America." Medal also participated in a 2-hour discussion table on "Invasive Plants in Latin America" with an audience of almost 100 participants representing most the latino-american countries. At the same symposium, Medal gave an half-hour presentation on "Biological Control of Tropical Soda Apple in Florida." This presentation was co-authored by Daniel Gandolfo (USDA-ARS South-American Biological Control Lab., Argentina), Dr. Henrique Predrosa & Edgard Bredow (Universidade Federal do Parana, Curitiba, Brazil), Dr. Marcelo Vitorino (Universidade Regional de Blumenau, Brazil), Dr. Charles Wikler (Universidade Centro-Oeste, Irati campus, Parana state, Brasil), and Dr. James Cuda.

Dr. Jim Maruniak also attended the Brazilian Symposium on Biological Control and gave an invited talk on " Molecular Methods to Improve Baculoviruses as Biological Pesticides."

Graduate student Onour Moeri attended the FAO/IAEA International Conference on Area-Wide Control of Insect Pests in Vienna, Austria, 9-13 May 2005. Onour displayed a poster entitled "Application of the F1 Sterile Insect Technique (F1SIT) for Field Host Range Testing of the Tortricid Episimus utilis, a Candidate for Classical Biological Control of Brazilian Peppertree in Florida." Co-authors were Drs. James P. Cuda, William A. Overholt, Stephanie Bloem, and James E. Carpenter.

Onour was then invited to give an oral presentation on the same subject at a Research Coordination Meeting of the Coordinated Research Project on "Use of Nuclear Techniques for the Colonization and Production of Natural Enemies of agricultural insect pests" held in Vienna, Austria, 13-17 May 2005. This meeting was through the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture.

Frank Wessels, one of Dr. Cuda's graduate students, was invited to attend the 118th Annual Meeting of the Florida State Horticultural Society held in Tampa, FL, 5-7 June. Wessels and Cuda co-authored a presentation entitled, "A Novel Form of Caribbean Fruit Fly (Tephritidae) Suppression: Classical Biological Control of the Preferred Host Psidium cattleianum (Myrtaceae)." Wessels delivered the presentation and won 1st Place in the Student Paper Award Competition.

Dr. James P. Cuda and Frank Wessels attended the 20th Annual Symposium of the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council held in Key West, FL, 9-11 May. Wessels and Cuda were co-authors of a presentation entitled, "Biology and Host Specificity of Tectococcus ovatus, a Potential Biological Control Agent for the Strawberry Guava, Psidium cattleianum, in Florida." Cuda also attended the Board of Directors meeting where he presented an annual report from the Brazilian Peppertree Task Force, a working group that he chairs.

Dr. James P. Cuda attended the 25th Annual Meeting of the Florida Native Plant Society held in Melbourne, 12-15 May. Cuda co-organized an Invasive Exotic Plant Demonstration Workshop for the meeting participants.

Dr. James P. Cuda participated as a speaker and moderator at the Annual Aquatic Weed Control Shortcourse held in Ft. Lauderdale, 16-20 May. Cuda delivered a presentation entitled, "Biting Bugs Encountered in the Aquatic Environment."

Dr. James P. Cuda was invited to participate in an Invasive Plants and Wildlife Habitat Programs Field Day for Landowners held at the Southwest Florida REC, Immokalee, FL, on 2 June. The one day workshop included formal presentations in the morning session and a tour of demonstration treatments of the invasive plants Brazilian peppertree and melaleuca. Cuda delivered a presentation entitled, "Conceptual Model for Ecologically Sustainable Management of Brazilian Peppertree."

Student Endowments

Dr. John Capinera announced that the department received the first royalty check (about $14,000) from the publication of the Encyclopedia of Entomology. We also had $6,000 in royalties from other publications. The combined royalties allow us to establish a new student endowment.

The department also received an endowment from Dr. David Williams. Dave is retired from the USDA, but now has an office in our building. His generous contribution is earmarked for student support in urban entomology.

Coming to a Home Near You

UF/IFAS entomologists Bill Kern, Brian Cabrera and Lyle Buss will conduct a Household Invaders Pest Identification workshop as part of the Florida Entomological Society's (FES) Annual Meeting in Ft. Myers, 24-27 July. The workshop is scheduled for Tuesday, July 26, 9 AM-Noon. A Web site with details is available at http://flrec.ifas.ufl.edu/entomo/Household%20Invaders/Household_Invaders_Web.htm You do not need to be a member of FES or register to attend the FES meeting to attend the workshop. But you must register for the workshop as the participants will receive insect samples to take home, handouts, and a box lunch (Why can't they just eat the insects?).

Butterfly Collecting

Since spring and summer bring an increase in collecting activities by staff, students and research associates, it is appropriate to outline basic protocols for specimens brought into the McGuire Center.

1. All specimens not dispatched with a killing agent (e.g., cyanide, ethyl acetate) within the past 12 hours must be left in the freezer room for placement in the freezer. The current freezer schedule allows specimens to be placed in the freezer on Wednesday morning before 10:00. A locked storage room is available to hold specimens until that time. Do not store unfrozen specimens in your office or anywhere else in the building. See the collection manager.

2. Copies of pertinent collecting permits (domestic and foreign collections) and form 3177 (foreign) must be placed on file with the collection manager.

3. Please provide the collection manager with approximate number of specimens in the collection, and an accession number and accession labels will be provided to the collector.

Your adherence to these procedures will help keep pests out of the collection and streamline procedures. - Dr. Thomas C. Emmel

New Collections

Dr. Capinera announced that the department received a large donation of pinned insect from all over the world, courtesy of Russell Hill of Pensacola, Florida. They are in three cabinets containing Cornell Drawers located in the back of room 2216. These specimens are excellent for showing the diversity of insects, the evolution of form, etc. Myrna Litchfield and Nick Hostettler have the key to access them. Please do not remove these specimens from the Cornell drawers (i.e., do not handle them) or the building, as they will be damaged. However, other insects, principally Lepidoptera, are available in Riker mounts in the wood cabinets of 2216. The Riker mounted specimens can be borrowed for school visits, etc., as they are much less likely to be damaged by transport.

Bug Quote

"It is better to be a young June-bug than an old bird of paradise." - Mark Twain

Newsletter Minutia

Thomas Fasulo is the newsletter editor. Send submissions to him at fasulo@ufl.edu. Issues are published the middle of each month. Submit items for an issue by the 7th of that month.

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