UC Davis Graduate Students Do Well At ESA Conference
UC Davis graduate students Katharina Ullmann (right) and Matan Shelomi (far left) won top honors in their respective graduate student presentations at the ESA meeting. Ullmann won a first-place award, and Shelomi, second. With them is ESA president Ernest Delfosse of Michigan State University. (Photos by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
DAVIS--Graduate students in the UC Davis Department of Entomology did well at the 59th annual Entomological Society of America meeting, held Nov. 13-16 in Reno.
Katharina Ullmann, who studies with Neal Williams, won first place in her category for her presentation on "Spatial and Temporal Patterns of Crop Rotations and Their Impact on Squash Bee (Peponapis pruinosa) abundance in the Sacramento Valley of California."
Ullmann competed in the Graduate Student 10-Minute Paper Competition, Plant-Insect Ecosystems (P-IE)-10. Sixteen students competed.
Matan Shelomi, who studies with Lynn Kimsey, won a second-place award for his talk on DEET induced delay of blow fly landing and oviposition rates on treated pig carrion (Sus Scrofia L.). Shelomi, who had conferred with forensic entomologist Robert Kimsey, competed in the Graduate Student Ten-Minute Paper Competition, Medical, Urban and Veterinary Entomology (MUVE)-3 with 12 other students.
The UC Davis Debate Team, led by Matan Shelomi and also comprised of Mohammad-Amir Aghaee (who studies with Larry Godfrey), Andrew Merwin (who studies with Michael Parrella) and Jenny Carlson (who studies with Anthony 'Anton' Cornel) won its debate, arguing on the pro side of "The Land Grant Mission of Entmolology Departments Remains Economically Relevation in the U.S. Today." They competed against a multi-institution team from Purdue and Louisana State University.
Undergraduate student Heather Wilson, who created the video, "I Wanna Be an Entomologist" (a parody of "I Wanna Be a Billionaire) for the ESA YouTube contest, didn't win her division, but her video scored the most hits in the open category--nearly 3000.. Wilson, who works in the Frank Zalom lab, also gave a research presentation on the Spotted Wing Drosophila at the ESA meeting.
Members of the UC Davis winning debate team (from left): Andrew Merwin, Matan Shelomi, Meredith Cenzer and Mohammad-Amir Aghaee. Members of the UC Davis Linnaean Team, the Pacific Branch championship team, made it to the semifinals. From left are Matan Shelomi, Mohammad-Amir Aghaee, Meredith Cenzer and Andrew Merwin.
In the Linnaean Games, a college bowl type competition, the University of Nebraska won the championship by defeating North Carolina State. The winning team from Nebraska, which took home the silver cup: Tim Husen, Jess Jurzenski, Ken Miwa, and Wayne Ohnesorg.
The UC Davis Linnaean Team, the Pacific Branch champions, made it to the semifinals by defeating Iowa State. The UC Davis team: Andrew Merwin, Matan Shelomi, Meredith Cenzer (who studies with Louie Yang) and Mohammad-Amir Aghaee.
At the semifinals, UC Davis lost to Texas A&M, Southwestern Branch representatives, in Game Six.
Prior to the semifinals, emcee Tom Turpin of Purdue, whose attire usually includes a butterfly bowtie, complimented Shelomi on his choice of ties--a red bowtie--as the crowd applauded.
Some of the questions asked at the UC Davis/Texas A&M competition (answers below):
1. Brown marmorated stink bug is a more serious pest of fruit crops than the brown stink bug. Why is this?
2. The Vedalia beetle is an example of a biological control agent. What is the common name of the pest it was brought to the United States to control and what was the host plant of the pest?
3. The Tsetse fly does not lay eggs, what produces live births. What is this condition called?
4. Depending on the reference, dobsonflies are classified in two different orders? What are they?
5. What is the scientific name of the first insect pathogen registered for use in the US?
6. Exactly how do the band-winged grasshoppers produce sound?
7. Pseudoscorpions are not insects but like other arachnids and some insects they produce silk. How is silk used by pseudoscorpions?
8. The standardized ending “oidea” designates which category in the classification of insects?
9. Until recently, praying mantids were thought to be deaf. We now know that 65% of all mantid species can hear. Where do the tympanal organs occur in mantid species?
10. Although no ants are native to Hawaii, approximately how many are now found there? Is it about 10, about 20, about 30, or more than 40?
11. Which embryonic germ layer forms the insect’s midgut?
12. What is the difference between a releaser pheromone and a primer pheromone?
13. What is the active ingredient in the insecticide Proaxis?
14. According to “Borror and DeLong” the number of ovarioles per insect ovary ranges from 1 to over 200. However, in the text a common range is listed. What is that range? A number in that range will be considered a correct answer.
1. Brown stink bug uses fruit trees mainly as adult feeding hosts, reproducing on various herbaceous hosts. BMSB lays eggs on fruit trees, and all feeding stages feed on the fruit.
2.The cottony cushion scale and citrus crops.
4. Megaloptera, Neuroptera.
5. Bacillus popilliae (registered in 1948)
6. By snapping their hind wings while in flight
7. In making a cocoon in which the animal overwinters
8. Superfamily (e.g. Orthopteroidea, Hemipteroidea)
9. The two tympanal membranes face one another inside a narrow groove between the metathoracic legs (hind legs).
10. Sadly to most, between 40 and 50 species of ants are now found on Hawaii
12. A primer causes relative slow changes in physiology; in contrast, a releaser almost instantly creates a physiological response
14. 4 - 8
--Kathy Keatley Garvey
UC Davis Department of Entomology