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News and Press

June 2017. Tim Anderson successfully defended his doctoral dissertation and is now a postdoc at the PERC. Congratulations Tim!

June 2017. Collections Manager Dr. Gino Nearns accepted a position with APHIS/PPQ's National Identification Services (NIS) as a Coleoptera specialist at the National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.

May 2017. Associate Professor and PERC Director Dr. Jennifer Zaspel accepted a position at the Milwaukee Public Museum (MPM) as the Research Curator and Head of Zoology. Dr. Zaspel will remain a critical part of the PERC as an Adjuct Professor.

April 2017. PERC Director Dr. Jennifer Zaspel was promoted to Associate Professor! Congratulations Dr. Zaspel!

April 2017. Gareth Powell successfully defended his Master's thesis! Congratulations Gareth!

March 2017. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel received a Bravo Award. The Bravo Award seeks to highlight the excellence found across all areas and job functions at Purdue University by recognizing extraordinary achievements on every scale.

December 2016. Gareth Powell won the Purdue Entomology Outstanding Graduate Student award! Congratulations Gareth!

November 2016. Julia Snyder successfully defended her Master's thesis and Taylor Nelson presented her Capstone Research Project. Congratulations Julia and Taylor!

September 23-30, 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and her lab attended the Entomological Collections Network (ECN) and the XXV International Congress of Entomology (ICE) 2016 meetings at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL. Tim Anderson's presentation in the Graduate Student Oral Competition: Morphology, Systematics, and Phylogeny: Flies, Lepidopterans, and Others was awarded first place in the President's Prize competition. Crystal Klem won second place in the Graduate Student Poster competition for her contribution titled "A preliminary phylogeny of Eudocima based on morphological data (Lepidoptera: Erebidae: Calpinae)" in the Morphology, Systematics, and Phylogeny: Flies, Hemiptera, and Lepidoptera session. Congratulations Tim and Crystal!

August 25, 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and her lab hosted Dr. Gavin J. Svenson (Cleveland Museum of Natural History). Dr. Svenson gave a departmental seminar titled "Overhauling the praying mantis classification system to understand their evolution."

August 23, 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel was featured in an article titled "Purdue entomologist receives NSF grants for collections-based research" published by Purdue University's Ag News.

August 15, 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and Crystal Klem visited Vernon Antoine Brou, Jr.'s insect collection in Abita Springs, LA. It was an incredible visit! He provided us with Eudocima phalonia specimens and tissues from 25 countries so we can test species boundaries in this complex with Next Gen sequencing techniques. Thank you, Vernon!

August 2016. Theresa E. Andrew, officially joined Dr. Zaspel's Lab as Ph.D. student.

August 4-18, 2016. Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to participate in a long-term collaborative project with the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve (Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde).

June 2016. Gareth Powell travelled to Vietnam to conduct field work with colleagues from BYU.

July 18-20, 2016. Dr. Gino Nearns attended the first Entomological Collections Management Workshop, which was held at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History (Washington, DC).

July 7-10, 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and her lab attended the 2016 Lepidopterists' Society Meeting at The Nature Place near Florissant, CO. This international meeting is held yearly in different locations. Crystal Klem won the Harry K. Clench Award for second place talk in the student competition. Congratulations, Crystal!

June 10-11, 2016. Tim Anderson participated in the Milwaukee Public Museum's annual BioBlitz that took place at Grant Park in South Milwaukee, WI. Tim assisted about 80 other scientists in surveying over 900 species of organisms encountered in the downtown metropolitan park.

June 2016. Megan McCarty was featured in Purdue Agriculture's Destination Purdue Magazine, in an article titled "Bright researcher attracted to moths."

May 16-30, 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to teach Purdue Entomology's study abroad course: ENTM 295 "Biodiversity and Conservation in the Tropics."

May 2016. In collaboration with 27 other institutions, the Purdue Entomological Research Collection was awarded funds from the National Science Foundation to digitize its Lepidoptera holdings. The project, Lepidoptera of North America Network (LepNet) will begin in early July.

April 2016. Tim Anderson won a Purdue University Teaching Academy Graduate Teaching Award. Congrats Tim!

March 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to participate in a long-term collaborative project with the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve (Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde).

March 2016. Gareth Powell travelled to the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History (Washington, DC) and the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University (Boston, MA) to conduct MS thesis research.

March 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel, Crystal Purcell, and Julia Snyder travelled to The Natural History Museum, London, England, to conduct research on Lepidoptera.

February 21-28, 2016. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel attended a NSF-funded workshop in Guangzhou, China to explore enhancing collaboration between US and Chinese researchers in systematic biology.

February 9-12, 2016. Dr. Andrew Cline of the California Department of Agriculture visited the PERC.

February 5, 2016. PERC Research Associates Ron King and Dr. John Shuey visited to study Lepidoptera.

February 4, 2016. Dr. Hamidou Traore of the Institute of Environment and Agricultural Research, Burkina Faso, visited the PERC.

January 26, 2016. PERC Research Associate Ron King visited to study Lepidoptera.

January 2016. Crystal Purcell was awarded a Purdue Graduate Student Government Professional Grant. Congratulations, Crystal!

January 2016. Three Zaspel lab grad students (Tim Anderson, Gareth Powell, and Julia Snyder) visited the Florida State Collection of Arthropods (FSCA), Gainesville, FL.

January 5, 2016. Dr. Marc Milne (Assistant Professor of Biology, University of Indianapolis) visited to study spiders.

December 2015. Research associate Kyle Schnepp visited the PERC Coleoptera collection.

November 18-30, 2015. Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to participate in a long-term collaborative project with the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve (Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde).

November 16, 2015. Gareth Powell was awarded an Ernst Mayr travel grant to visit the Museum of Comparative Zoology (MCZ) at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA. Congratulations, Gareth!

November 14-20, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel, Dr. Gino Nearns, and several Zaspel Lab graduate students travelled to Minneapolis, MN, to present at the annual meetings of the Entomological Collections Network (ECN) and Entomological Society of America (ESA). Crystal Purcell got runner up in the student poster competition. Congratulations, Crystal!

November 1, 2015. Gareth Powell was awarded a travel grant from the Center for Systematic Entomology (CSE), to visit the Florida State Collection of Arthropods (FSCA) insect collection in Gainesville, FL. Congratulations, Gareth!

October 30, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel's research on vampire moths highlighted on the Purdue Entomology website.

October 29, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel's research on vampire moths highlighted in National Geographic News! "The Vampires That Feed on Vampires: If vampire bats and blood-drinking moths are scary, meet their parasites."

October 26, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and several of her students visited Dr. Anthony Cognato's Holistic Insect Systematics Laboratory at Michigan State University. Dr. Zaspel gave a seminar titled "Toxic Tigers, Vampire Moths and Creepy Caterpillars: Chemoecology and Phylogenomics within the Erebidae (Insecta: Lepidoptera)."

October 16, 2015. Alex Angel, of Fort Wayne High School, donated time to help the PERC put unique identification labels on pinned insect specimens. Thank you, Alex!

October 14, 2015. Carolina Moreno dos Santos joined the Zaspel Lab as a visiting Ph.D. student from Brazil.

October 9-13, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel took her Advanced Insect Taxonomy students and PERC staff to the UT Biological Field Station near the Gatlinburg, TN and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

September 5 - October 4, 2015. Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Europe to visit natural history museums in London, Paris, Berlin, and Prague, and attended the 7th Insect Phylogeny Meeting in Dresden, Germany and the Immature Beetles Meeting in Prague, Czech Republic.

September 2, 2015. Two Zaspel lab undergraduate students were elected as officers of the Thomas Say Entomological Society. Megan McCarty is now the President and Taylor Nelson is now the Secretary. Congratulations!

August 27, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and her lab hosted Dr. Kevin Johnson (Principal Research Scientist, Illinois Natural History Survey, University of Illinois). Dr. Johnson gave a departmental seminar titled "The tree of lice: the history of host-parasite coevolution."

August 18-25, 2015. Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to participate in a long-term collaborative project with the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve (Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde).

July 28 - August 1, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and her lab hosted the 2015 Lepidopterists' Society Meeting. This international meeting is held yearly in different locations.

July 15-16, 2015. The PERC hosted a "Buprestid/Cerambycid Beetle Taxonomic Workshop." This workshop was funded via the Farm Bill and was attended by 25 state entomologists and pest survey specialist. Participants came from several states, including CA, FL, MO, OR, and TX.

June 8-9, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and her lab hosted Dr. Stephen Cameron (Associate Professor, Queensland Universtiy of Technology, Australia). Dr. Cameron gave a special seminar titled "Lousy genomes, dying dung beetles and intagible fruit-flies: Australian insect phylogenomics."

June 2-4, 2015. Gavin Martin, doctoral student in the Bybee Lab at Brigham Young University, visited the Zaspel Lab and PERC. Gavin gave a presentation on his research titled "Molecular Phylogeny of Lampyridae, with Focus on Visual and Bioluminescent Evolution."

May 5, 2015. Tim Anderson passed his prelims with flying colors-great job, Ph.D. Candidate Anderson!

May 2015. Gareth Powell and Crystal Purcell officially joined Dr. Zaspel's Lab as Master of Science students. Congratulations, Gareth and Crystal!

May 2015. Alicia Hodson began work as a curatorial technician in the PERC/Zaspel Lab.

April 27, 2015. John Shuey (Lepidopterist) from the Nature Conservancy visited Dr. Jennifer Zaspel.

April 23-May 11, 2015. Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to participate in a long-term collaborative project with the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve (Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde).

April-May 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel and Julia Snyder travelled to The Natural History Museum, London, England, to conduct research on Lepidoptera.

March 2015. Robert Behring, an undergraduate student doing research in Dr. Zaspel's lab, received a grant from the Prairie Biotic Research, Inc. The award was for $1,000 and the title of the project is: Ecology, Distribution, and Behavior of the Meadow Rue Owlet Moth Calyptra canadensis (Lepidoptera: Erebidae). Congratulations, Robert!

February 12-March 13, 2015. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel, Dr. Gino Nearns, and Julia Snyder, travelled to Australia as part of a Research and Exploration Grant from the National Geographic Society. The title of the project is, "Phylogeographic history and the evolution of blood feeding in the vampire moth Calyptra minuticornis."

February 5-6, 2015. Dr. David Wagner, professor, Dept. of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Connecticut, and his student, Brigette Zacharczenko, visited the Zaspel Lab.

January 13-25, 2015. Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to participate in a long-term collaborative project with the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve (Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde).

December 2014. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel received a $5,000 grant from Purdue Libraries to conduct research at The National History Museum, London, UK.

December 29-31, 2014. Research associate Kyle Schnepp visited the PERC Coleoptera collection.

December 18, 2014. Collaborator and colleague Matt Lehnert (Kent State University) was one of the top ten winners in the Olympus BioScapes International Imaging Competition. Matt used confocal microscopy to image the proboscis of vampire moth Calyptra thalictri collected by Dr. Zaspel in Far Eastern Russia last summer. Congrats Matt!!!

December 5, 2014. The Purdue Entomological Research Collection (PERC) hosted the first "Labelpalooza" volunteer event to place unique database identifiers (labels) on pinned specimens. This will facilitate digitization and imaging of the PERC pinned collection. Thanks to everyone who donated their time and effort!

November 2014. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel was awarded a Research and Exploration Grant from the National Geographic Society. The title of the project is, "Phylogeographic history and the evolution of blood feeding in the vampire moth Calyptra minuticornis." Dr. Zaspel and colleagues will be using the funds to support a field expedition to Australia this spring!

November 14-19, 2014. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel, Dr. Gino Nearns, Tim Anderson, and Gareth Powell, travelled to Portland, OR, to present at the annual meetings of the Entomological Collections Network (ECN) and Entomological Society of America (ESA). Gareth joined Paul Skelley and Kyle Schnepp for field work in Idaho and Eastern Oregon before the meetings, and later visited Dr. Andy Cline at the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA).

November 11, 2014. Several members of the PERC and Zaspel Lab participated in the 2014 Purdue University Research Roundtable.

November 10, 2014. Dr. Greg Curler visited the PERC Diptera collection.

November 6, 2014. Julia Snyder officially joined Dr. Zaspel's Lab as a Master of Science student.

October 22-30, 2014. Dr. Gino Nearns travelled to Costa Rica to participate in a long-term collaborative project with the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve (Reserva Biológica Bosque Nuboso Monteverde).

October 20, 2014. Dr. Chris Dietrich and assistants from the Illinois Natural History Survey (INHS) delivered the InvertNet new window imaging robot which will be used to photograph the PERC pinned collection.

October 10-14, 2014. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel took her Advanced Insect Taxonomy students and PERC staff to the UT Biological Field Station near the Gatlinburg, TN and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

September 15, 2014. Tim Anderson travelled to the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) to conduct research for his dissertation. Tim received a travel grant for this trip.

September 4, 2014. Megan McCarty joined the Zaspel Lab as an undergraduate student studying Lepidoptera systematics.

July 2014. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel travelled to the Russian Far East from July 21 to August 7th for vampire moth research.

July 1, 2014. Dr. Gino Nearns started as the PERC's new Collections Manager. From Jan 2013 to July 2014, Gino was a USDA Postdoctoral Researcher at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History (Washington, DC).

June 2014. Dr. Jen Zaspel and postdoctoral researcher Dr. Clare Scott travelled to the Evolution meetings in Raleigh, NC where they presented their research.

June 2014. Ph.D. student Tim Anderson received a Collections Study Grant from the American Museum of Natural History. Congrats Tim!

May 2014. Dr. Jen Zaspel was accepted to the NESCent Academy course "Next-generation sequencing for phylogenetics and phylogeography" this July!

May 2014. USDA APHIS PPQ personnel visited the PERC! Chicago area invasive species detection specialists Scott Blackwood and Ryan Van Duzor worked in the PERC from May 20–23. They received advanced training in wood-boring beetle identification-mainly in the families Buprestidae, Cerambycidae and Scolytidae from USDA-APHIS PPQ specialist Robert Brown. The course was an intensive laboratory hands-on experience that spanned four days with sessions in dissection of specimens and identification to family, subfamily and species levels.

May 2014. Ph.D. student, Ines Goncalves, from the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro new window, visited the PERC to examine material for her Ph.D. research. The title of her dissertation is, "Phylogeny of the Euthyplociidae (Insecta, Ephemeroptera) with emphasis on the Brazilian genus Campylocia."

May 2014. Tim Anderson was awarded an Ernst Mayr Travel Grant in Animal Systematics from the Harvard University Museum of Comparative Zoology (MCZ). This grant will be used to help fund an extensive museum trip which will include the Field Museum, the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, the National Museum of Natural History, the MCZ and the Cornell University Insect Collection so that he can prepare loan material from these institutions for his graduate research.

April 2014 Dr. Jen Zaspel gave invited research presentation to the Biology Department at the University of North Dakota. The title of her presentation was, "Evolutionary Studies in Vampire and Tiger Moths (Lepidoptera: Erebidae)."

April 2014. Dr. Jen Zaspel received a travel award to attend the Phylogenomics Symposium and Software School at Evolution 2014 in Raleigh, North Carolina!

April 2014. Clare Scott travelled to Indiana University-Bloomington campus to give a talk on her current and future research to the Moczek Lab.

March 2014 Gareth Powell and Mike Brattain received a grant to study the beetles associated with the Pocket Gophers in Newton Co. IN.

March 2014. The Zaspel Lab travelled to Mississippi State University to visit the Mississippi Entomology Museum (MEM), do some field work, and present current research to the Entomology Department. Big thanks to Dr. Richard Brown and his team in the MEM for hosting the visit!

February 2014. Dr. Jen Zaspel visited the Lemmon lab at FSU for training in Anchored Phylogenomics. Probe design for tiger and vampire moths is under way. Thanks to Alan and Emily Lemmon for hosting!

February 2014. Dr. Jen Zaspel travelled to Purdue University-Calumet campus to give invited research talk in Biology Department.

January 18-25, 2014 Gareth Powell and Mike Brattain recently visited the Florida State Collection of Arthropods (FSCA) in Gainesville, Fl. The hospitality shown was above and beyond and made the trip very enjoyable and productive.

November 2013. Dr. Gino Nearns, USDA Postdoctoral Research Associate, National Museum of National History visited the PERC! Gino is an expert on Cerambycidae (longhorned beetles) systematics and taxonomy.

November 2013. Jennifer Zaspel and her postdoc Clare Scott recently attended the Entomological Collections Network and Entomological Society of America meetings in Austin, TX. Jennifer Zaspel presented two posters: "Geographic distribution and differential feeding behaviors of the fruit-piercing and skin-piercing moth, Calyptra thalictri Borkhausen (Lepidoptera: Erebidae)" and "Morphological assessment of tymbal microstructure in relation to acoustic communication in tiger moths (Lepidoptera: Erebiae: Arctiinae)." She was also an author on three talks. Clare gave a talk on the study of the metabolomics and transcriptomics of the lichen moth tribe, which is being conducted at Purdue, entitled "Preliminary study of the transcriptomes and metabolite profiles of the lichen moth tribe Lithosiini (Lepidoptera: Erebidae: Arctiinae)."

November 2013. Dr. Clare Scott's paper "A preliminary molecular phylogenetic assessment of the lichen moths (Lepidoptera: Erebidae: Arctiinae: Lithosiini) with comments on palatability and chemical sequestration" is In Press at Systematic Entomology.

November 13–14, 2013. Andrew Bentley, Specify Software Usability Lead and Manager of the Ichthyology Collection the KU Biodiversity Institute (University of Kansas) conducted a workshop instructing Purdue Entomology and Botany staff and students on maximizing the utility of Specify 6, a relational database platform used by PERC staff to manage data pertaining to the research collection.

November 10, 2013. Paulo Vilela Cruz (Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil) visited the PERC to study the collection of South American Ephemeroptera.

August 4, 2013. Dr. Greg Curler travelled to Costa Rica to participate in the Diptera Blitz collecting event for the NSF-funded ZADBI new window project.

July 8, 2013. Tim Anderson travelled to the Southwestern Research Station in Portal, AZ to collect insect specimens for phylogenetic research.

June 4, 2013. Dr. Jen Zaspel travelled to Thailand to collect specimens of Calyptra and other Lepidoptera.

June 1, 2013. PERC launched Specify 6 new window as the collection database.

May 17, 2013. Dr. Greg Curler travelled to Mississippi State University to attend a North American Dipterists Society meeting and visited the Mississippi Entomological Museum new window.

May 15, 2013. Dr. Greg Curler was appointed as a Research Collaborator at the National Museum of Natural History new window,Smithsonian Institution new window.

May 13, 2013. Tim Anderson travelled to the American Museum of Natural History to attend a biological specimen informatics course.

May 8, 2013. Tim Anderson attended the Specimen Bioinformatics Course at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, NY.

March 25, 2013. Dr. Greg Curler travelled to Washington D.C. to visit the Smithsonian Institution and assist with curating the USNM Psychodidae new window.

March 4, 2013. Dr. Jen Zaspel travelled to the University of Kansas new window to attend a workshop on the digitization of wet collections.

February 24, 2013. Tim Anderson travelled to the Illinois Natural History Survey new window to attend a Species File Software workshop.
 

Dr. Jennifer Zaspel, Crystal Klem, and Vernon Antoine Brou, Jr.
(l-r) Dr. Jennifer Zaspel, Crystal Klem, and Vernon Antoine Brou, Jr.

Vietnam
Vietnam collecting trip 2016.

Crystal Klem
Lepidopterists' Society President John Calhoun (L) presented Crystal Klem with the Harry K. Clench Award for her second place talk in the student competition at the LepSoc 2016 meeting.

Reserva Ecologica Bijagual
ENTM 295 Costa Rica study abroad course at Reserva Ecologica Bijagual.

Tim Anderson
Tim Anderson (left) receiving Purdue University Teaching Academy Graduate Teaching Award.

Dr. Jennifer Zaspel, Guangzhou, China
Dr. Jennifer Zaspel in Guangzhou, China.

Gareth Powell and Dr. Andy Cline
Gareth Powell and Dr. Andy Cline.

Alex Angel
Alex Angel, of Fort Wayne High School, donated time to help the PERC put unique identification labels on pinned insect specimens.

GSMNP trip 2015
Dr. Jennifer Zaspel with students and PERC staff near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Stephen Cameron
Dr. Stephen Cameron, Queensland, Australia.

National Geographic
Dr. Jennifer Zaspel was recently awarded a Research and Exploration Grant from the National Geographic Society.

Research Roundtable
Nov 11, 2014, Zaspel Lab graduate students Julia Snyder and Tim Anderson at the 2014 Purdue University Research Roundtable.

Dr. Greg Curler
Nov 10, 2014, Dr. Greg Curler visited the PERC Diptera collection.

Julia Snyder
Julia Snyder officially joined the Zaspel Lab!

Monteverde Malaise
Collaborators Randall Zamora and Néstor Guevara servicing one of the PERC's "Mega Malaise" traps, Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Reserve, Costa Rica.

GSMNP trip
Dr. Jennifer Zaspel with students and PERC staff near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Ines Goncalves
May 2014. Ph.D. student, Ines Goncalves, (Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) visited the PERC.

FSCA visit
January 2014. (from L-R) Kyle Schnepp, Gareth Powell, Paul Skelley, Mike Thomas, Mike Brattain (FSCA, Gainesville, FL).

Paulo Vilela Cruz
November 2013. Paulo Vilela Cruz (Manaus, Amazonas, Brazil) visited the PERC.

Thailand trip
June 2013. Dr. Jennifer Zaspel (2nd from right) travelled to Thailand to collect specimens of Calyptra and other Lepidoptera.

 


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