Department of Entomology


                         brown marmorated stink bug

Brown marmorated stink bug

Brown marmorated stink bug is a highly polyphagous pest that threatens a variety of California's crops, including fruit, nuts, and vegetables.

                         palm weevil

South American palm weevil

The South American palm weevil is widely established in parts of San Diego County where it is killing ornamental palms, especially Canary Islands date palms.


Tamarixia radiata

The parasitoid, Tamarixia radiata, imported from Punjab Pakistan, has been widely established in southern California and is providing significant control of Asian citrus psyllid in urban areas.

                         asian citrus psyllid

Asian citrus psyllid

Asian citrus psyllid is a serious pest of citrus because it spreads a bacterium that causes huanglongbing, a lethal disease.

                         Jumping bristletail

Jumping bristletail

A jumping bristletail (Archaeognatha) rooting around in the sail, Riverside, CA.


Snake fly

A female snake fly on juniper from the San Bernardino mountains. This individual was inadvertently captured in a vane trap baited with pheromones used to attract wood-boring beetles.

                         eucnemid beetle

Eucnemid beetle

A rare eucnemid beetle (Paleoxenus dohrni) from the San Bernardino mountains.

                         pea aphids

Pea aphids

Pea aphids (Acyrthospiphon pisum) feeding on fava bean.

                         carpenter ant

Carpenter ant

A carpenter ant (Camponotus sp.) collected from a colony in a downed log in the San Bernardino mountains.

Entomology in the News


  • Three UC Riverside entomologists have won prestigious awards from the Pacific Branch, Entomological Society of America. Click here to learn more.
  • A team led by Dr. Erin Rankin's lab, recently performed a study on the Big Island, Hawaii, and found that viruses associated with the varroa mite, a parasite of honeybees, have spilled over into the western yellowjacket, a honeybee predator and honey raider. The result is a hidden, yet remarkable, change in the genetic diversity of viruses associated with the larger pathogen community of the mite and wasp, with repercussions yet to be understood. Click here to read more.

  • Dr. Alexander Raikhel and his lab identified a new approach for controlling dengue fever and the Zika virus. Click here to learn more. 
  • ESA recognizes Dr. William Walton for his interactive approach to teaching. Click here to learn more. 
  • Dr. Raikhel's lab received a five-year grant of $2.44 million from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious diseases to investigate the role hormones play in the female mosquito's ability to use human blood for egg production. Click here to learn more. 
  • Entomology Museum volunteers rediscovered a beetle that hadn’t been sighted for more than a century. Click here to learn more.

  • Entomology researches, Ponisio, McFrederick and Woodard receive grant from Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research to improve pollinator health. Click here to read more.
  • Director of Center for Invasive Species Research Mark Hoddle warns of the threat weevils pose to San Diego palm trees. Click here to learn more.
  • W.M. Keck foundation awards $1 million in support of Drs. Yamanaka, Haga-Yamanaka, and Sladek research aimed at showing membrane transporters guide flow of steroid hormones into cells. Click here to learn more.
  • Dr. Choe's lab new findings on how Argentine ants use chemical secretions as weapons could help in the development of new pest control strategies. Click here to learn more.
  • Entomologists warn fellow peers about the negative aspects of light traps. Click here to learn more.
  • The California Academy of Sciences announces that Ring Carde has been inducted in the Academy Fellows for having made notable contributions to the natural sciences. Click here to read more.
  • The U.S Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention awards an $8 million grant to UC Riverside and UC Davis to launch the Pacific Southwest Regional Center of Excellence in Vector-Borne Diseases. Click here to learn more about this exciting new project.
  • Dr. Jocelyn Millar's research on pest chemical communication was featured in the newsletter for The Western Integrated Pest Management Center. Click here to read more.
  • You do not have to look far in order to find a world-class Entomologist. University of California Riverside's entomology program is ranked number two in the world, according to the Center for World University Rankings, and has a team of experts who seek to understand and find ways to prevent insects from obstructing our daily lives.Click here for the article. 
  • The UC Riverside-led DARPA Team, led by Omar Akbari, won the $14.9 Million DARPA grant to battle disease-carrying mosquitos. To learn more about this award click here.
  • Alec Gerry earns Lifetime Achievement Award from Livestock Insect Workers Conference. Click here to learn more about his great achievement.
  • The red palm is a global menace threatening the sustainability of date farming and the existence of ornamental palm trees, like the iconic Canary Island date palm that characterizes many famous localities (e.g., Cannes in France and Carthage in Tunisia). National Public Radio's (NPR) Maanvi Singh discusses the red palm weevil invasion with Mark Hoddle. Click here for the article.                                                                                                        larva1
  • The South American palm weevil is well established in San Diego county where is it responsible for killing hundreds of ornamental Canary Island date palms ( these are palms that have the sub-apical region pruned to look like pineapple). Mark Hoddle worked with Elliott Kennerson and Josh Cassidy with the science show "Deep Look" produced by KQED in San Francisco to make a mini-documentary (~4 mins in length) on the South American palm weevil invasion. A blog on the KQED project is available on the center for Invasive Species Research website. To watch this cool video, click here.                                   Palma  
  • Dr. Naoki Yamanaka has become the first person at UC Riverside to be named a Pew Scholar in the biomedical sciences. The Pew Charitable Trust has awarded him four years of flexible funding to pursue foundational research. Read UCR Today here.
  • Palm weevils are a global menace to date and ornamental palm producers around the world. In this clip, Simon Morton, host of "This Way Up" on Radio New Zealand, interviews Mark Hoddle about this problem and his recent trip to Tunisia at the invitation of the US State Department and US Embassy to assist with the invasion of this country by the highly destructive red palm weevil.
  • Dr. Omar Akbari's lab has found a way to create red-eyed mutant wasps by using CRISPR gene-slicing technology. Through this discovery, the Akbari lab would like to get a better understanding of wasp genetics and other insects in order to find a way to control insects who destroy crops or spread diseases. Read UCR Today here
  • UC Riverside Entomology Department No. 2 in the World - Center for World University Rankings places department second in the world based on research articles in top journals. Read the UCR Today article here
  • Alec Gerry receives $15,000 award for USDA multi-state research project, read UCR Today article here
  • Alexander Raikhel co-led research team to disrupt egg production in Dengue- and Zika-spreading mosquito in UCR Today here
  • Entomology student, Phong Au-Hong, to participate in Junior Summer Institute at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College, read UCR Today article here
  • Rick Vetter, University of California, Riverside spider expert, co-authored paper outlining expressions of skin conditions often misdiagnosed as brown recluse bites
  • Dr. Ring Cardé receives Certificate of Distinction at XXV Congress of Entomology.
  • Matt Daugherty, a Cooperative Extension specialist in the UC Riverside Entomology Department, says researchers continue to seek cause and effect answers related to Pierce's disease and the vectors known to spread it around.
  • Mark Hoddle discusses the South American palm weevil invasion in southern California with Alex Cohen on KPCC's Take Two, the NPR station in Pasadena.
  • The South American palm weevil invasion was covered by KCAL 9 News and Extension Specialist Mark Hoddle provided commentary on the incursion and the weevil's biology.

  • Mark Hoddle's research has been featured by the New York Times on the South American palm weevil, Rhynchophorus palmarum, which has established in San Diego County and will likely become an unprecedented threat to urban palms, especially iconic Canary Island date palms, and it is probably a significant risk to California's $68 million per year date industry in the Coachella Valley.  This weevil has killed scores of Canary Island date palms in Tijuana Mexico. The South American palm weevil has spread north from Tijuana into San Ysidro as far as Chula Vista in San Diego County where it has been associated with dead palm trees. Read the New York Times article, California Today: An Invasive Beetle Threatens State’s Southern Palm for more information.

  • Mark Hoddle, an Extension Specialist in Biological Control, participated in a live radio discussion on NPR's "The Exchange" host by Laura Knoy. The topic under debate was the use of natural enemies in biological control programs targeting invasive pests. Dr. Daniel Simberloff, University of Tennessee, participated in the discussion. Hoddle and Simberloff answered questions about biocontrol from listeners who called in to the show. Listen to the NPR segment here.

  • Dr. Hollis Woodard's bee-hunting road trip makes noise loud enough for the New York times to write a piece about it here.
  • A team of scientists, including Jessica Purcell, an assistant professor of entomology at the University of California, Riverside, has found that a species of ant that clusters together to form rafts to survive floods exhibits memory and repeatedly occupies the same position during raft formation. See more
  • Dr. Omar Akbari did a highly innovative and technical review by examining the different gene drives systems, analyzed the pros and cons of each and applications associated with them, and also surveyed the safety and regulatory issues associated with them. See more
  • Timothy Paine received the Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards for Food and Agricultural Sciences award at the 128th APLU Annual Meeting, which is currently taking place in Indianapolis, Ind. See more
  • Naoki Yamanaka, an assistant professor of Entomology, Suppression of steroid hormone release causes developmental delay. Compared to a control (normal) insect on the left, pupariation of the maggot whose steroid hormone release is disrupted is significantly delayed, and the extended larval feeding period gives rise to a big pupa. See more.
  • An entomologist at the University of California, Riverside has examined the evidence by analyzing the large body of research done in this area to come to the conclusion that managed bees are spreading diseases to wild bees. See more

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417 Entomology Bldg.

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