Katy Smith

Recent Article: Costs of Horn Fly (Diptera: Muscidae) Control for Cow-calf Producers in Tennessee and Texas, 2016

Ph.D. student Katy Smith and Associate Professor Dr. Trout Fryxell collaborated with the Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics and recently published an article titled “Costs of Horn Fly (Diptera: Muscidae) Control for Cow-calf Producers in Tennessee and Texas, 2016” in the Journal of Economic Entomology. Horn flies (Haematobia irritans (L.)) are a common pests of livestock as they feed on the blood of their host 20 to 40 times per day. This article details the economic impact of managing this pest in both Southern states. To read the full article and find out more please visit here.  

Dr. Hadziabdic Guerry and Dr. Trigiano Lab Published in The American Phytopathological Society

Sarah Boggess, Dr. Denita Hadziabdic, Dr. Robert Trigiano, and colleagues published an article this past November in The American Phytopathological Society (APS) journal. The article titled “Conventional Gel Electrophoresis and TaqMan Probes Enable Rapid Confirmation of Thousand Cankers Disease From Diagnostic Samples“, discusses thousand cankers disease (TCD) and improved and rapid detection protocols.  For the full article, click here.

Portrait of Matthew Huff

Matt Huff’s Publication – High Quality Reference Genome for Fraxinus pennsylvanica

Recently, research associate, Matthew Huff, published an article titled “A high quality reference genome for Fraxinus pennsylvanica for ash species restoration and research”. The Fraxinus pennsylvanica, green ash tree, is distributed across North America, and due to a small percentage of these native trees remaining healthy, they are known as the “lingering ash”. To read the full article and find out more on the research being conducted on Fraxinus pennsylvanica, visit here.

Portrait Wanwan Liang

Accomplishments From a Recent Graduate, Dr. Wanwan Liang

  Dr. Wanwan Liang (class of 2019 and former EPP graduate student in the laboratory of Dr. Jerome Grant) recently published her fourth manuscript from her doctoral research conducted at the University of Tennessee. Her manuscripts were published in four prestigious journals: Biological Invasions, Ecological Modeling, Environmental Entomology, and Remote Sensing. She is currently a Post-Doctoral Associate in the Center of Geospatial Analytics at North Carolina State University and can be contacted at wliang5@ncsu.edu. Dr. Liang was an amazing student during her time here at UT. She excelled academically and socially; she fit right at home here in our department. She even stopped by to help with last year’s Buggy Buffet! We are very proud of her. If you get

New Paper on Relative Attractiveness of Ornamental Cultivars to Pollinators

Ornamental plants are generally considered to be less attractive to pollinating insects, but some varieties and cultivars are more attractive than others. Here we compare the relative attractiveness of different popular ornamental plants to flower-visiting insects and provide recommendations for more pollinator-friendly varieties. View the open-access article Please feel free to email Dr. Laura Russo with any questions concerning this project: lrusso@utk.edu

Closeup of the head to Solenopsis geminata (fire ant)

Joint Evolution of Asexuality and Queen Number in an Ant

A recent paper in Current Biology by DeWayne Shoemaker and colleagues from the University of Georgia describes a socially polymorphic population of the tropical fire ant, Solenopsis geminata, in which multi-queen colonies produce queens asexually but produce workers sexually via matings with males from the sexually reproducing single-queen social form. Two distinct asexual lineages from multi-queen colonies likely originated from the same sexual single-queen population. Multiple asexual/polygyne genomes are transmitted undiluted in this system, but sterile workers produced with sperm from a sexually-reproducing/monogyne population are necessary for the persistence of these lineages. The intersection of social polymorphism, facultative asexuality, and genetic caste determination marks this population of S. geminata as an embodiment of the diversity of ant reproductive systems and suggests previously