I am an Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Entomology & Nematology at the University of Florida. My research is at the interface of population, community, and evolutionary ecology focusing on plant-herbivore interactions. Current research themes in the lab include the evolution of plant defense against insects, spatial variation in plant-herbivore interactions, and insect community ecology. I am primarily interested in fundamental questions in ecology using herbaceous plants and insect herbivores in grasslands, although we are also interested in applied questions related to ecosystem management, such as understanding invasion dynamics and how herbivores influence ecological restoration. To address these questions, we combine observational and experimental approaches in the lab, greenhouse, and field at scales from local patches to populations and communities distributed across bioclimatic gradients.
Jasleen is Ph.D. student and her research interests center around investigating the complex mechanisms underlying tri-trophic interactions among plants, herbivores, and their natural enemies in natural habitats. She has MS in Biology from University of Texas RGV where she studied the effects of mycorrhizal inoculation on plant growth, defenses and tri-trophic interactions. Previously she completed her BS in Agriculture, specializing in crop protection from Punjab Agricultural University, India. Ultimately, she strives to utilize her research to devise sustainable pest management strategies.
Joey is interested in entomology and plant-insect ecology, especially that of hymenopteran parasitoids, predators, and pollinators. He has a BS in Biology and minor in Environmental Studies from Ursinus College in Pennsylvania where he studied tritrophic interactions in alfalfa agroecosystems. He aspires to continue in academia and conduct research that aids in conservation efforts and ecologically-based food systems such as agroforestry.
Jake is from Virginia and is currently a junior at the University of Montana majoring in Wildlife Biology and minoring in Biology. He is interested in ecology and researching how plant traits vary among populations.