My primary research interests surround the phylogenetics, systematics, and evolution of cynipoid wasps (Insecta, Hymenoptera, Cynipoidea). My earlier research focused on phylogeny and historical biogeography of the “macrocynipoid” wasps (Hymenoptera, Cynipoidea) parasitizing wood-boring insects using morphology characters to reconstruct phylogeny. My systematic work also includes taxonomical studies, including revisions and description of new species. In recent years, my research interests have expanded to include related fields under the umbrella theme of evolution, including mating pattern and population structure of the American beaver, population genetics and conservation of red squirrels in Eastern Illinois, phenotypic plasticity and adaptation of grasshoppers, and diversity and evolution of Wolbachia associated with cynipid gall communities, and host plant mediated speciation in Cynipidae.
For more information, please visit my research page.
I regularly teach Systematic Biolofy, Organic Evolution, Biogeography, Plant-aniamal Interactions, General Biology.
I also teach Heredity and Society, Genetics and Evolution, as well as a study abroad course The Great Wall and Beyond, which focuses on Chinese culture and lant use.