Department of
Entomology

Entomology News

How Humanity Unleashed a Flood of New Diseases

What do Covid-19, Ebola, Lyme and AIDS have in common? They jumped to humans from animals after we started destroying habitats and ruining ecosystems.

Gene Robinson named interim dean of the College of LAS

Renowned scholar, teacher, and administrator begins role July 1

Gene Robinson, a professor of entomology and director of the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, has been named interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

Cicadas Are Delightful Weirdos You Should Learn to Love

As Brood IX takes flight for the first time in 17 years,
cicada lovers have their ears open.

Around this time of year, Marianne Alleyne hosts dozens of houseguests in her basement. Far from using camping equipment or cots, they sleep upside-down, clinging to a curtain. The entomologist at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign has collected cicadas, those bizarre and misunderstood cyclical insects, for four years.

Genetically modified mosquitoes could be released beginning this summer

Silver bullet or jumping the gun?

This summer, for the first time, genetically modified mosquitoes could be released in the U.S. within the states of Florida and Texas.

On May 1, 2020, the company Oxitec received an experimental use permit from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to release millions of GM mosquitoes (labeled by Oxitec as OX5034) every week over the next two years in Florida and Texas.

SIB's Commitment to Diversity and Equity

Dear SIB Community,

At the end of May, 2020, Chancellor Jones sent out an email with a powerful message of unity for this campus - we must come together and care for one another. He reminds us that the University of Illinois is a "community committed to the scholarship, engagement, equity, inclusion and leadership that dismantles systems that utilize power, privilege and violence to disenfranchise, diminish and destroy."

Calling all pollinator fans: University of Illinois seeks citizen scientists

For the second year, University of Illinois Extension is calling all lovers of bees, butterflies, and other pollinators that keep our crops and gardens growing to join scientists in tracking their distribution and habitat use across the state.

Virus-infected honey bees more likely to gain entrance to healthy hives

Entomology professor Adam Dolezal and his colleagues found that infection with the Israeli acute paralysis virus increases the likelihood that infected bees are accepted by foreign colonies.

Grad student names new treehopper species after Lady Gaga

Brendan Morris discovered a new genus and species of treehopper. He named it in honor of the musical artist Lady Gaga.

Lessons on how to effectively tackle insect invasions

Dr. Esther Ngumbi details how pest insects can be effectively managed in Africa. Kenyan food production and grazing land is under threat from a huge desert locust invasion. The insects are currently in two counties in northern Kenya and are now spreading to other Kenyan regions including Meru, Laikipia, and Rift Valley. The government has yet to quantify losses but past attacks have caused harvest losses of up to 70%.