Ecology, Physiology, Population Biology

Category: Insect Invasion Page 1 of 2

Genomics Paper in Molecular Ecology!

In a cross-town collaboration with Dr. Andrew Eckert’s lab at VCU, we are pleased to present to you a paper on the the evolutionary genomics of an insect invasion along a latitudinal gradient in North America!

Can an Invasive Insect Stand the Heat?

Back in the summer of 2015 (Dr. Grayson’s 1st summer at UR!) we did a reciprocal transplant experiment at UR and Mountain Lake Biological Station using individuals sourced from the Coastal Plain and the Appalachian Mountains. It was a big endeavor: lots of folks contributed their time and energy to the data collection, analysis, and contextualization of the study. We are so excited to announce that the paper from this project is now officially published in Biological Invasions!

Three new insect papers out!

This spring and summer have been very productive for the Grayson Lab! We’ve had three articles published recently with 8 of our undergrads and 5 of our collaborators. We’ve accomplished so much together in the gypsy moth and harlequin bug systems!

Grayson Lab Represented at 102nd Ecological Society of America Meeting

Kristine, Lily, and our VCU undergraduate colleagues Hannah ’18 & Madison ’17 represented the Grayson Lab in Portland, Oregon at the 102nd annual Ecological Society of America Meeting. Hannah & Madison presented our results from the stage-specific heat shock experiment on August 7th (UR Undergraduate coauthors: Nana Banahene ’18 & Salem Salem ’18). Lily presented a talk on our

Madison, Hannah, Kristine, & Lily at ESA 2017 in Portland, OR

Madison, Hannah, Kristine, & Lily at ESA 2017 in Portland, OR

research with the red backed salamanders in the James River Park on August 8th (UR Undergraduate coauthors: Sarah Timko ’17 & Christian Law ’17). Kristine wrapped things up with a talk on the Allee slope and Slow-the-Spread gypsy moth management program on August 10th. It was a great meeting! (And concurrent with the 38th annual Footbag Championships!)


Early Career NSF Grant!

We did it! In a collaboration with Salvatore Agosta at VCU and Dylan Parry at SUNY-ESF, we received and Early Career NSF Grant!! The grant, titled: Linking thermal tolerance to invasion dynamics: Climate and physiological capacity as regulators of geographical spread, will help fund projects relating to the physiological tolerance and fitness of gypsy moth populations at the invasion front in North America.

Find some the news releases here: NSF News Release from UR  and here: NSF News Release

Gypsy Moth Respirometry Begins!

Sal Agosta, Carolyn May, Noah Hillerbrand, Eloy Martinez, and Kristine Grayson at VCU learning about the "thermal hut."

Sal Agosta, Carolyn May, Noah Hillerbrand, Eloy Martinez, and Kristine Grayson at VCU learning about the “thermal hut.”

We have just begun a collaboration with Salvatore Agosta (VCU) and Eloy Martinez (Guánica State Forest, Puerto Rico) to study the metabolism of gypsy moths from different populations reared at different acclimation temperatures. This past weekend UR students, Carolyn May and Noah Hillerbrand, along with Trevor Faske (VCU), Lily Thompson, and Kristine met up with Eloy & Sal at VCU to learn about the respirometry equipment and test out the machine for research in March and April. Thanks for coming all the way from Puerto Rico to help us out Eloy!

Published Paper!

After much revision and hard work, Lily’s Master’s Thesis is finally published in Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata! You can find a PDF of the article here.Forest edges & mate-finding paper

Media Frenzy

There’s been a lot of media interest in the gypsy moth work we’ve been doing in the Grayson Lab this year. This is thanks to the great efforts of folks in University of Richmond Communications Office.

Our latest media release was a two page spread in the Autumn 2015 edition of the University of Richmond Magazine. You can see the online version here.UR Magazine Autumn 2015

Summer Research Spotlight on Kayla Sherman

Our very own Kayla Sherman (Class of 2017) is a featured research student on the University of Richmond webpage! Congrats to Kayla! You can read the article here.

Baltimore or Bust

The Grayson Lab met up in Baltimore, Maryland for the 100th meeting of the Ecological Society of America! So many talks to hear and posters to see! Including 2 poster presentations from our lab: one gypsy moth performance in the southern range and one on on harlequin bug melanization!

ESA Photo

L to R: Trevor Faske, Lily Thompson, Nana Banahene, Amber Yang, Melisa Quiroga-Herrera, Dr. Kristine Grayson (Lab members attending the meeting, but not pictured: Andrew Levorse, Logan McDonald, Katelyn Horn, & Dr. Jen Olson)

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