- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
He will receive the award in September at the ESA meeting in Orlando, Fla., being held in conjunction with the International Congress of Entomology (ICE).
Loeb's laboratory is located at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, N.Y., where he has research and extension responsibilities for grapes and small fruit crops.
Loeb received his doctorate in entomology from UC Davis in 1989, studying with Professor Rick Karban. He earlier (1977) received his bachelor's degree at UC Davis, majoring in vertebrate zoology. "I was really into ornithology as an undergraduate but shifted to insect ecology as I was finishing up my master's (in ecology) at San Diego State," he said.
Excerpts from the ESA award announcement:
"Broadly speaking, his research focuses on species interactions involving plants, herbivores, natural enemies, and, more recently, microbes, with the specific applied goal of developing novel approaches to pest management. Along with collaborators, his research on tritrophic interactions involving leaf morphology (acarodomatia) and predatory and mycophagous mites has established new directions in plant breeding for enhancing conservation biological control.
"He is currently directing considerable research effort toward developing a better understanding of the biology and management of the invasive species spotted wing drosophila (Drosophila suzukii), a significant pest of soft-skinned fruit crops throughout much of North America and abroad. Projects include the chemical ecology and behavior of host finding as a basis for behavioral management, overwintering and spring biology, monitoring and decision making, interactions with microbes, including biological control with entomopathogens, mechanical control using netting, and optimizing chemical control.
"Other research projects ongoing in his lab include vector-pathogen interactions and biological control and pollination ecosystem services. In addition to research and extension responsibilities, he co-teaches a course on grape pest management and serves as program leader for the Department of Entomology and Geneva Experiment Station."
IPM specialist Frank Zalom, distinguished professor of entomology at UC Davis, received the Excellence in IPM award in 2010. His former PhD student, Douglas Walsh, now a professor at Washington State University, won the award in 2013. See list of other recipients.
(Editor's Note: Richard Levine of ESA contributed to this news story.)