The title is also the title of his newest book, published by Harvard University Press.
“There are powerful lessons to be learned from bees about how we humans can better understand our place in nature, engage the people and events surrounding us with greater focus and clarity, interact more effectively in our relationships and communities, and open ourselves to a deeper understanding of who we are as individuals, communities and a species,” Winston said. “I'll talk about my experiences over 30 years of walking into apiaries, and the lessons learned from a life spent among the bees.”
Winston is a professor and senior fellow, Centre for Dialogue, Simon Fraser University, Harbour Centre, Vancouver, Canada, and is also a professor in the university's Department of Biological Sciences.
Winston has written a total of six books, including “The Biology of the Honey Bee,” which can be found on the bookshelves of almost every honey bee researcher and beekeeper, said Extension apiculturist Elina Niño, who will introduce him.
Winston is described as that rare individual, a scientist, who can speak eloquently to the public. "Recognized as one of the world's leading expert on bees and pollination, Mark has had an illustrious career researching, teaching, writing and commenting on bees and agriculture, environmental issues and science policy," his website says.
Winston received a bachelor of science degree in biology from Boston University in 1971 and his master's degree at Boston University in marine biology in 1975. He earned his doctorate in entomology from the University of Kansas in 1978.
His awards include:
Fulbright Award, Council for the International Exchange of Scholars 1986-1987
Gold Medal in the Natural Sciences, Science Council of B.C. 1992
Hambleton Award for Outstanding Research, Eastern Apicultural Society 1992
Manning Award for Innovation, Manning Foundation (Alberta, Canada) 1997
Nora and Ted Sterling Prize in Controversy, SFU 1998
Killam Research Fellowship, Canada Council, 2000-2002
Academic of the Year, Confederation of University Faculty Associations (B.C.) 2001
Environment Award for Communication, City of Burnaby, B.C. 2001
Eve Savory Award for Science Communication, Science Council of B.C. 2001
Fellow, Royal Society of Canada (elected 2003)
Fred Rathje Memorial Award, Canadian Honey Council 2004
Michael Smith Award for Science Promotion, NSERC 2004
Outstanding Service Award, Canadian Association Professional Apiculturists 2006
President's 40th Anniversary Award, Simon Fraser University 2006
Honorable Mention, MacJannet Prize, SFU Undergraduate Semester in Dialogue, 2012
Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, for excellence in higher education, 2012
Champion for a Healthy Community Award, Simon Fraser University 2013
For more information, see his website.
The seminar, hosted by graduate student Meredith Cenzer of the Louie Yang lab, is from 12:10 to 1 p..m. in 122 Briggs Hall.
Singer will discuss host shifts in checkerspot butterflies. For four decades, he has studied butterfly-host plant ecology, evolution and behavior, and more recently, phenological responses to climate change.
Singer formerly taught at the University of Texas, Austin, or what he refers to as his former "teaching and butterfly evolution empire."
From his website: "Singer has had a massive influence on generations of undergraduate and graduate students at UT and researchers on butterfly ecology and behavior elsewhere."
Plans call for the seminar to be recorded for later posting on UCTV.
Those were two of the questions asked of the three-member team from the Department of Entomology and Nematology, University of California, Davis, when they competed in the Linnaean Games at the Pacific Branch of the Entomological Society of America's recent meeting in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.
They not only answered those questions correctly but went on to win the branch championship. The UC Davis team--comprised of captain Ralph Washington, Jr., and members Jéssica Gillung, and Brendon Boudinot-- will now compete in November at the national Linnaean Games hosted by the Entomological Society of America (ESA) in Minneapolis.
What's the answer to “What insect family can vector anthrax?” Tabanidae.
What caste of honey bee has the greatest number of ommatidia? The drone, the male honey bee. Ommatidia are the subunits of a compound eye.
The Linnaean Games, named for Carl Linnaeus (1707-1778), the father of modern taxonomy, are college bowl-style competitions involving insect science, including entomological facts, insect trivia and noted entomologists. The lively question-and-answer competitions are “an important and entertaining component of the ESA annual meeting,” said Richard Levine, ESA communications program manager.
The university-sponsored student teams, comprised of graduate students and occasionally undergraduate students, challenge one another at the annual ESA branch meetings for the championship and bragging rights. Each ESA branch then funds the champion team to compete in the national Linnaean Games. The runner-up team from each branch also competes in the nationals.
At the Pacific Branch meeting, UC Davis defeated Washington State University (WSU), Pullman, Wash., 125-60 in the finals to win the championship. WSU earlier defeated Utah State University, 80-40, and UC Davis defeated USU 170-30.
As an undergraduate student, Ralph Washington Jr. helped anchor the UC Davis 2010 team that competed in the nationals in San Diego. UC Davis narrowly lost to Ohio State University, which advanced to the finals and then went on to win the championship.
Washington, Gillung and Boudinot are all systematists. Washington, whose major professor is nematologist Steve Nadler, studies mosquitoes; Boudinot studies ants with major professor Phil Ward, and Gillung studies flies with major professor Lynn Kimsey, who directs the Bohart Museum of Entomology. Gillung is co-advised by Shaun Winterton of the California Department of Food and Agriculture.
Washington, a first-year doctoral student from Sacramento, Calif., and the newly elected president of the UC Davis Graduate Student Association, focuses on how mosquitoes choose to lay their eggs, and how those choices affect their evolution.
Boudinot, a second-year doctoral student from Washington state, is known for his expertise on the morphology of male ants. He is also interested in the biogeography and evolutionary history of ants.
Jessica, a second-year doctoral student from Brazil, is a prominent taxonomist of Diptera (flies), with special emphasis on the diversity and evolution of spider flies, family Acroceridae. Some Acrocerid adults are specialized pollinators, while larvae are internal parasitoids of spiders.
The trio is eagerly looking forward to making the 1900-mile trip from Davis to Minneapolis. Theme of the meeting is “Synergy in Science: Partnering for Solutions.” It will take place Nov. 15-18.
The Pacific Branch of ESA encompasses 11 U.S. states (Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming); several U.S. territories, including American Samoa, Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands; and parts of Canada and Mexico.
But non-healthy insects, just like sick humans, can also show changes in body reflectance.
Newly published research led by a University of California, Davis agricultural entomologist shows that radiometric energy reflected by pesticide-exposed adult beetles indicates when they become “terminally ill.”
Christian Nansen, lead author of “Detection of Temporal Changes in Insect Body Reflectance in Responses to Killing Agents,” published in PLOS ONE, said the first-of-its-kind research is “completely non-destructive and completely non-invasive.”
“The results may be of considerable relevance to insect physiologists and toxicologists studying responses to treatments and/or to behavioral entomologists studying adaptations and behavioral responses,” he said.
Nansen and colleagues Leandro Prado Ribeiro of the University of São Paulo,Brazil, and Ian Dadour and John Dale Roberts of the University of Western Australia researched the effects of two species of beetles exposed to killing agents (an insecticidal plant extract and entomopathogenic nematodes).
Their subjects were maize weevils (Sitophilus zeamais), and larger black flour beetles (Cynaus angustus). The maize weevil is a major pest of corn and also feeds on standing crops and stored cereal products, including wheat, rice, sorghum, oats, barley, rye, buckwheat, peas and cottonseed, as well as pasta.
“The larger black flour beetle thrives in cotton gin trash piles on the Southern High Plains of Texas,” Nansen said, “and sometimes becomes a nuisance after invading public and private structures.”
In their study, they addressed two questions: 1) Will exposure to known killing agents cause a detectable change in body reflectance? And 2) And if so, after what exposure time?
“It is common to use infra-red thermometers to measure skin reflectance of radiometric energy in specific wavelengths as part of determining our body temperature, and body temperature is one of the key diagnostics in detection of human illnesses,” said Nansen, a specialist in integrated pest management (IPM), insect ecology and remote sensing. “In our study, we analyzed radiometric energy reflection by adult beetles (in particular wavelengths in the visible and infra-red spectrum) and showed that reflectance features change when beetles are starting to become terminally ill!”
“By following their body reflectance over time, we demonstrated that, compared to healthy /untreated individuals, there was a significant change in the body reflectance at the time point when killing agents are known to cause lethal symptoms.”
“Specific spectral bands were used to develop reflectance-based classification models for each species, and independent validation of classification algorithms showed sensitivity (ability to positively detect terminal stress in beetles) and specificity (ability to positively detect healthy beetles) of about 90 percent,” the authors wrote. “Significant changes in body reflectance occurred at exposure times, which coincided with published exposure times and known physiological responses to each killing agent. The results from this study underscore the potential of hyperspectral imaging as an approach to non-destructively and non-invasively quantify stress detection in insects and other animals.”
Nansen, a native of Denmark, received his master's degree in biology from the University of Copenhagen in 1995 and his doctorate in zoology from the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University in Denmark in 2000. He accepted positions in Portugal, Benin, United States, UK and Australia before joining the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology in January as an assistant professor. His international experience also includes being an international exchange student at the University of Lisbon, Portugal and a visiting professor at Northwest A&F University, Yangling, China. As part of his undergraduate studies, Nansen traveled to Brazil to write a book about sustainable agriculture in rainforest areas.
John "Jack" Longino, professor and associate chair of biology at the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, and the adjunct curator of entomology, Utah Museum of Natural History, University of Utah, will speak on "Project ADMAC or Ant Diversity of the Mesoamerican Corridor" from 12:10 to 1 p.m. in 122 Briggs Hall.
Ant specialist Phil Ward, professor of entomology, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, will introduce and host him.
"The MesoAmerican corridor is a zone of complex tectonic history, episodic biotic interchange between large continents, and frequent mountain-building," Longino said. "Ants blanket this landscape, forming a tapestry of fine-scale habitat specialization and geographic replacement. Many taxonomists have contributed to the description of species in the region and this fundamental 'biodiversity mapping' continues apace. Project ADMAC (Ant Diversity of the MesoAmerican Corridor) combines morphological analysis with large-scale DNA sequencing (targeted enrichment of Ultra-Conserved Elements) to reveal the evolutionary history and geographic structure of ant species in MesoAmerica.
"Ants show very strong patterns of elevational specialization and geographic turnover, and Project ADMAC will address questions of (1) how and when montane species evolve, (2) the effects of differing mountain ages on communities, (3) the impact of lowland barriers on montane ant dispersal, and (4) whether ants experienced a major biotic interchange on the closure of the Panamanian isthmus."
Longino addressed the Entomological Society of America meeting last November on the topic. He told of plans
1. to build a detailed biodiversity map for an ecologically dominant group of insects (ants) in a biogeographically important region of the world (the MesoAmerican corridor);
Longino's fascination with insects began in his childhood. His research statement:
"We share the planet with millions of species, and many of them are insects. A childhood fascination with insects led me to an interest in ecology and the desire to explain patterns of diversity, and I settled on ants as an ecologically dominant group of insects worthy of study. As it became clear that I was living during a time of enormous biotic change caused by human activities, I developed a strong conviction that it was important not only to understand patterns of diversity but to document it in detail for this time in history. I divide my time between two research fields: taxonomy and ecology. On the taxonomy side, I have coordinated large-scale inventories of Neotropical insect biodiversity, I discover and describe new species of ants, and I further refine our understanding of species ranges and morphological variability. I make use of advanced imaging technology, specimen-level databases, and Web-dissemination to make biodiversity data available to the widest audiences. On the ecology side, I use quantitative inventory techniques that allow analysis of diversity patterns. I am interested in how species are distributed on tropical mountainsides, what ecological factors explain the elevational range limits of species, and how species might respond to climate change."
Longino was interviewed in August of 2013 by NPR on his research. He told NPR he started out collecting stamps in his childhood, but that bored him. He decided to "get small."
"If you're shopping for a home entertainment system," he says, "you can't do better than a good dissecting microscope," he said. At the time of the NPR interview, Longino had just published two papers describing 33 new species of ants, bringing his personal "new species" total to 131, NPR reported. In the article, Longino described himself as "average" among entomologists, pointing out that some entomologists have described thousands of new species.
Longino received his bachelor's degree in zoology, with distinction, in 1978 from Duke University, and his doctorate in zoology in 1984 from the University of Texas, Austin. He then served as an assistant research biologist at UC Santa Barbara; academic director of the Monteverde Tropical Biology Quarter, UC Education Abroad Program; adjunct assistant curator of the Florida State Museum of Natural History (Allyn Museum of Entomology), and scientific director of Project ALAS. He joined the Evergreen State College, Washington, serving from 1991 to 2011 before becoming a professor in the Department of Biology, University of Utah.
His recent publications include:
Longino, J. T., M. G. Branstetter, and R. K. Colwell. 2014. How ants drop out: ant abundance on tropical mountains. PLoS ONE 9:e104030.
Longino, J. T. 2013. A revision of the ant genus Octostruma Forel 1912 (Hymenoptera, Formicidae). Zootaxa 3699:1-61.
Longino, J. T. 2013. A review of the Central American and Caribbean species of the ant genus Eurhopalothrix Brown and Kempf, 1961 (Hymenoptera, Formicidae), with a key to New World species. Zootaxa 3693:101-151.
Longino, J. T. 2012. A review of the ant genus Adelomyrmex Emery 1897 (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) in Central America. Zootaxa 3456:1-35.
Longino, J. T., R. K. Colwell. 2011. Density compensation, species composition, and richness of ants on a Neotropical elevation gradient. Ecosphere 2:art29.