President Rick Foster presided over the 66th Annual meeting of the Entomological Society of America North Central Branch in Minneapolis this week. The meetings featured 8 symposia, 141 paper presentations, and 66 poster presentations. Final registration totaled 345, an increase of more than 100 from the previous year’s meeting.
Purdue Entomology was well represented, and our students, in particular, did a wonderful job representing the department throughout the meeting. Our Linnaean Game team (Gabriel Hughes, Kapil Raje, Sarah Thompson, and Scott Williams) had a tough first match against perennial champion Nebraska, but forced the eventual champs of the competition to defend a 5 point lead through the final question – Nebraska 105, Purdue 100.
Congratulations to all of our students who did a great job with their presentations and posters. Several came home as winners in the student competition including:
1st place MS – Jonathan Nixon (supervisor, Rick Foster) – Predicting oviposition by corn earworm, Helicoverpa zea, in sweet corn with pheromone traps.
2nd place MS – Adam Salyer (supervisor, Grzesiek Buczkowski) – Odorous house ants, Tapinoma sessile: “drivers” or “passengers” of ecological change?
3rd place MS – Gabriel Hughes (supervisor, Matt Ginzel) – Evidence for the stratification of hydrocarbons in the epicuticular wax layer of female Megacyllene robiniae (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae).
2nd place PhD – Gladys Andino (supervisor, Greg Hunt) – A new assay to measure mite grooming behavior.
3rd place PhD – Jeff Grabowski (supervisor, Cate Hill) – Properties of tick-borne Langat virus during growth in Ixodes scapularis ISE6 cells.
Entomology alumni I bumped into at the meeting included Bob Bruner (BS ‘08), Ray Cloyd (MS ’95, PhD ‘99), Thelma Heidel, (MS ‘08), Steve Kells (PhD ‘98), Andy Michel (BS ’01), Tom Myers (BS ‘73), Dwain Rule (MS ‘00), Kevin Steffey (BS ‘72), and Gene White (MS ‘96). The top prize in the photo salon competition to a NCB member went to alum Tom Myers for a striking photo of a longhorn beetle.