General Entomology

From EEBedia
Revision as of 19:54, 12 November 2019 by Kevin Keegan (Talk | contribs) (Syllabus and Course Materials)

Jump to: navigation, search



EEB 4250 - General Entomology

Fall 2019

Day/Time: Tuesday+Thursday Lecture 12:30-1:20 Lab 1:30 3:30
Place: Storrs campus, Torrey Life Sciences Room 313
Credits: 4
Instructor: David Wagner

Torrey Life Sciences Rm 471
860-486-2139 and 860-942-1796 (cell)
Office hours: 10 MWF and as available

TA: Kevin Keegan

Torrey Life Sciences Rm 461
617-272-5054 (cell)
Office hours: as available (email for appointment)


  • Borror, DJ and RE White, 1970. Peterson Field Guide to Insects: America North of Mexico.
  • Gullan, P. J. and P. S. Cranston. 2010. The Insects: An Outline of Entomology. Fourth Ed. Blackwell Science, Oxford, England.


The lectures provide a broad introduction to insect diversity, phylogeny, structure and function, behavior, ecology, and conservation. The laboratory stresses sight identification and natural history of 120 common insect families. The collection requirement connects the lecture and laboratory by linking lecture topics, and especially insect behavior and ecology, to Connecticut’s extraordinary insect fauna.

Course Procedures and Policies

Academic Integrity:
Plagiarism and cheating are violations of the student conduct code, and may be punished by failure in the course or, in severe cases, dismissal from the University. For more information, see Appendix A of the Student Conduct Code.

If you have a disability for which you may be requesting an accommodation, you should contact a course instructor and the Center for Students with Disabilities (Wilbur Cross Building, Room 201) within the first two weeks of the semester.

Syllabus and Course Materials

Item Points
Midterms (100 pts each) 200 pts
Final 175 pts
Collection 300 pts
7 lab quizzes (25 pts each, lowest replaced by Live Insect Project grade), attendance (25 pts) and participation (25 pts) 225 pts
Lab practicum 80 pts
Current events/Speed talks (2 articles) 20 pts
Total 1000 pts

Syllabus and Grading Rubric

Syllabus (OLD)
Collection Grading Rubric

Collection Materials

Pdficon small.gif Label Template
Pdficon small.gif Collection Excel Sheet
Pdficon small.gif Collection Check #1
Pdficon small.gifOdonate Label Template
Pdficon small.gif Collection Check #2

Other Assignments

Pdficon small.gifLive Insect Project

(The live insect project will take the place of your lowest quiz grade)

Class Schedule

Date Lecture Quiz/Assignment Lab Readings
August 27 Course overview Wagner Lab visit
Collections Facility
Intro to collections
G+C Chapter 1
B+W pgs 4-29
August 29 Importance of Insects
Lecture outline
Lecture slides
Collecting Practice
Intro to iNaturalist
G+C Chapter 2
The Joy of Formication
Economic Value of Insects
September 3 The Diversity of Insects Quiz 1 Quiz 1: Borror and White pages 4-29
The Insect Orders Pt.1
Most recent Hexapoda phylogeny from Misof et al. (2014) (full paper available here)
(You will not be quizzed or tested on the Misof et al. (2014) paper)
September 5 External Anatomy I
External Anatomy I slides
The Insect Orders Pt.2 Continue G+C Ch. 2
So Great the Excitement - Alfred Russell Wallace
Bombardier Beetles - Thomas Eisner
September 10 External Anatomy II
Lecture Slides
Quiz 2 - The Insect Orders Pinning Practice
September 12 External Anatomy III
Lecture Slides
External Anatomy: Drawing Grasshoppers Begin G+C Chapter 3
September 17 Internal Anatomy
Lecture Slides
Internal Anatomy: Dissecting Cockroaches Continue G+C Chapter 3
Spider Love
September 19 Geologic/Fossil History I
Lecture Slides
Aquatics Field Trip G+C Chapter 7: Insect Systematics, esp. 7.3 pp. 201-207 plus one of the subdivisions
G+C Chapter 8: only pages 229-236 for Midterm I
September 24 Geologic/Fossil History II
Higher Classification of Insects I
Lecture Slides
Quiz 3 - External and Internal Insect Anatomy Non-Hexapod Arthropods, Non-Insect Hexapods, Apterygota, Palaeoptera
September 26 **First Lecture Midterm** Zoraptera, Dermaptera, Plecoptera Tom Eisner - Love Potion
G+C Ch. 6 (up to Dealing With Environmental Extremes)
October 1 Development and Growth
Lecture Slides
Quiz 4 - Non-Insect Hexapods, Apterygota, Paleoptera Dictyoptera, Phasmatodea, Embioptera, Grylloblattodea, Orthoptera G+C Chapter 4: Sensory Systems
October 3 Molting and Life Cycles I
Lecture Slides
Send Labels for Collection Check #1 to Kevin no later than Oct 5th Thysanoptera, Hemiptera I (aquatic) G+C Ch. 3
May Berenbaum - A Prayer Before Dining
October 8 Molting and Life Cycles II
Lecture Slides
Hemiptera II
October 10 Nervous System and Sensory Organs I

Lecture Slides
Collection Check #1 Hemiptera III (Aucheno- and Sternorrhyncha, Fulgoroidea), Psocodea
steam room adventure (bring headlamp)
Finish G+C Ch. 4
Howard Ensign Evans - Bed Bugs and Other Cuddly Things (up to pg. 178)
October 15 Nervous System and Sensory Organs II
Lecture Slides
Insect Behavior
Lecture Slides
Quiz 5 - Dermaptera-Psocodea (not including "optional" orders) Bug Jeopardy
Special Lab Topic: Plant secondary compounds & insect herbivory
Genome editing retraces the evolution of toxin resistance in the monarch butterfly (paper from Allegra's speedtalk, not required reading)
October 17 Social Insects I
Lecture Slides
Neuropterida G+C Ch. 12 Social Insects
October 22 Social Insects II
Lecture Slides
Aquatic Ecology No new reading, study for midterm
October 24 Special Lecture: Forensic Entomology with Dr. William Krisnky
Lecture Slides
Coleoptera I
Lecture Slides
October 29 ***Second Lecture Midterm*** Special Lab Topic: Silk, Coleoptera II
Lecture Slides
October 31 Insects and Plants I Special Lab Topic: Ghost Moths and Other Scary Insects, Coleoptera III
Lecture Slides
G+C Ch. 11
Thomas Belt - The Ant and the Acacia
November 5 Insects and Plants II Quiz 6 - Neuropterida, Coleoptera, Strepsiptera Insect Identification Lab (yours and aqautic lab samples)
Some online insect identification resources
G+C Ch. 13
November 7 Predators, Parasitoids, and Parasites I Trichoptera + Lepidoptera
G+C Ch. 15
Lecture Slides
November 12 Predators, Parasitoids, and Parasites II
Medical and Veterinary Entomology I
Mecoptera, Siphonaptera, Diptera I
Lecture Slides
Bug Jeopardy
November 14 Medical and Veterinary Entomology II Diptera II
November 19 Special Lecture: Acoustical Behavior In Insects by Dr. Charles Henry Diptera III
November 21 Entomophagous Insects Quiz 7 - Amphiesmenoptera + Mecopteroidea
Collection Check #2
Bug Banquet
Hymenoptera I
December 3 Insect Control/Pest Management Hymenoptera II
December 5 Insect Conservation Lab Practical Open Lab

Collection Tips
1) Ensure your name is clearly written on all boxes.
2) Please keep your vials in an easy-to-access container.
3) You must hand in a printed spreadsheet (found on the course website) along with your collection. Your name must be on it. The written families should be in the same order as the specimens in your boxes.
4) Don't forget about the ecological labels. Think about them carefully, this is an easy way to make mistakes if you rush.
5) Put the labels in the right order on the pin. Locality label on top, then species label (if needed), then ecological label (if needed), then family label (if it's the first in the row). Labels should be in line with the specimen and take up as little space as possible and still be legible. They should all be facing the same direction.
6) Organization of orders/families within the box is unimportant, as long as it is clear. Try to condense to as few boxes as possible.
7) Remember that the curation guidelines are to ensure that your specimens are "museum ready" - they might be your longest legacy on earth. Think about how beautifully well organized Dave's collection is upstairs, and the main collection next door. Look at your specimens and ask if they are ready to be seamlessly integrated into a museum collection.
8) Don't fret too much about a bad specimen (missing legs, etc) if it's the only one you have. Damaged specimens are still valuable if properly labeled.
9) Moderate trading is encouraged, ideally when both trade partners receive a family/order neither of them have.
10) Some specimens will be taken and added to the main collection (you should take this as a compliment, I had several of my specimens taken). If you have a favorite specimen you are particularly attached to, like something you raised as a pet, leave a note on your spreadsheet and we will try not to take it from you : ).

Some Primo Collecting Locations in Walking Distance of Campus

Field and road edges near W lot on North Side of UConn campus

Pastures along Gurleyville Road on East side of campus

Powerline cut along Hunting Lodge Road on West side of campus

Near Dairy Bar (MANTID HOT SPOT)

Some Primo Collecting Locations in Driving Distance of Campus

UConn Fenton Tract. Turn off of Gurleyville Rd here. Remember to drive slow!