Rapid Evolution of Insect Pests in Agroecosystems

Sean Schoville and I are convening a symposium titled, “Rapid Evolution of Insect Pests in Agroecosystems”. This symposium is part of the International Congress of Entomology.

2016 XXV International Congress of Entomology, in Orlando, Florida, USA | September 25-30.

An unresolved challenge for agriculture is to understand how to manage the inherent ability of insect pests to rapidly evolve and overcome pest control measures. This symposium will broaden the entomology community’s understanding of rapid evolutionary processes that characterize pest adaptation to agroecosystems. Understanding rapid evolutionary change is a critical component to seeing “beyond the borders of entomology”, in order to explain and mitigate the inherent dynamism of arthropod pests to respond to (and frequently overcome) human management practices. To accomplish this goal, we have drawn on the diverse expertise of international researchers working in phylogeography, population genetics, invasion genetics, evolutionary theory, pesticide resistance, and pest management, covering a broad range of arthropod pests. We propose that greater knowledge on evolutionary processes, system complexities, and management strategies that can be used to improve agroecosystem sustainability.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Increasingly, everyone is eating the same foods around the world.

Here is a really interesting interactive site that shows how people around the world are increasingly eating the same foods.

Hence, the homogenization of the world’s food supply allows insect pests of crops to achieve far broader distributions than previously possible.

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/foodfeatures/diet-similarity/

Food is becoming increasingly less tied to endemic plants and animals. Here is another interesting article from National Geographic:

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/foodfeatures/evolution-of-diet/

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Feature in the Burlington Free Press

Thanks to Joel Baird of the Burlington Free Press for the article covering our work on swede midge!

http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/story/life/green-mountain/2015/05/26/vermont-farmers-race-broccoli-eating-swede-midge/27952571/

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A visit to Wagenigen University

I am very excited to visit Wagenigen University in the Netherlands to give a talk and a Master class. Thanks Jeltje Stam!

http://www.wageningen-evolution-ecology-seminars.nl/

https://www.facebook.com/events/1620670738180765/

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Seeking a postdoc in population genomics

Post-doctoral Position on the Population Genomics of a rapidly evolving agricultural pest

“Do Hyper-Diverse Genomes Run The Pesticide Treadmill: Resequencing Colorado Potato Beetle Genomes To Understand Rapid Pest Evolution”, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Department of Entomology

A postdoctoral position will be available in Dr. Sean Schoville’s lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, in collaboration with Dr. Yolanda Chen (University of Vermont) and Dr. David Hawthorne (University of Maryland).

Summary:

Understanding the mechanisms underlying rapid evolutionary change, particularly at the scale of the whole genome, is an important challenge for both theoretical and applied evolutionary biology. This genome resequencing project focuses on the Colorado potato beetle, and its relatives, to understand the structural and functional genomic changes associated with the beetle’s host range expansion onto potato, the colonization of novel climatic regimes, and the rapid development of insecticide resistance (to over 50 classes of insecticides!).

Position Responsibilities:

The post-doctoral associate will be expected to analyze whole-genome resequence data to assess the population genomics and structural genomic changes across a diverse sample of Colorado potato beetle genomes. This project will provide training opportunities in bioinformatics analysis, population genetic modeling and phylogenomic analysis. Desirable skills for this project include familiarity with Linux operating systems and computer programming (Perl, Python, and R), as well as previous experience analyzing population genetic data.

How to Apply:

Funding for this position is available for 1 year with the possibility of extension. To apply, please send a single pdf with a cover letter, a CV, 1-2 representative publications, and names and contact information for 3 references to Dr. Sean Schoville, email: sean.schoville@wisc.edu, by June 30, 2015. Start date is flexible but preference will be given to candidates that can begin in late-August or early-September 2015. The University of Wisconsin is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.

For more information about the research in our groups, please go to:

http://labs.russell.wisc.edu/molecularecology/

http://blog.uvm.edu/yfanslow/

http://entomology.umd.edu/hawthorne-david.html

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment