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You are here: Home / Manager's Tool Kit / Expertise Databases / Taxonomic Experts for Insects, Mites, and Plant Pathogens
Manager's Tool Kit
Expertise Databases
Taxonomic Experts for Insects, Mites, and Plant Pathogens

Provides a list of taxonomic experts from USDA's Agricultural Research Service for for insects and plant pathogens.

Note: This information supports the following objectives from the National Invasive Species Management Plan (2008-2012):

Objective EDRR.2: Make Taxonomic Information More Readily Available to Governments and the Pubic.

• Implementation Task EDRR.2.1: Develop or enhance taxonomic expert lists to facilitate identification of terrestrial and aquatic organisms.

Performance Element EDRR.2.1.1: Identify taxonomic experts for terrestrial plants, invertebrates and vertebrates, plant and animal pathogens, and make their contact information available, as appropriate.

Systematic Entomology Laboratory (SEL)

Scientists conduct research on the identification and classification of beetles, moths, flies, true bugs, aphids, termites, thrips, and mites that impact U.S. agriculture and security. These are crop pests, invasive species, species for biological control of noxious insects and weeds, and species of quarantine significance. Scientists use digital imaging, DNA sequencing, and electron microscopy among other techniques to produce results that impact upon federal, state, public, and private agencies.


The Communications and Taxonomic Services Unit coordinates SEL's insect and mite identification service. Scientists identify more than 60,000 specimens each year that provide critical support to research projects in ecology, conservation biology, biological control, and integrated pest management. The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is the primary user of this service, but the user community is diverse and includes other ARS research laboratories, universities, and foreign governments.

Scientists respond to requests for information relating to the taxonomy, biology, ecology, and distribution of insect and mite species. Regulatory agencies such as APHIS use this information to develop strategies for protecting the U.S. from invasive species and agricultural pests. SEL scientists produce databases and interactive identification tools on the SEL Web site to meet the information needs of the public and scientific community. Much information is gleaned from building, maintaining, and developing digital archives of the Smithsonian Institution's insect and mite collections. For more information, see People & Places at SEL.

Taxonomic Specialists

Brown, John
Lepidoptera: Tortricidae (leaf roller moths)
(202) 633-4541

Buffington, Matthew
Hymenoptera: Cynipodea (cynipoid wasps)
(202) 633-4552

Chamorro, Maria
Coleoptera: Buprestidae: Agrilini (metallic wood-boring beetles)
(202) 633-1020

Favret, Colin
Aphidae (aphids)
(301) 504-5168

Gates, Michael
Hymenoptera: Chalcidoidea (chalcid wasps)
(202) 633-4554

Henry, Thomas
Hemiptera (true bugs)
(202) 633-4555

Konstantinov, Alexander
Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae (leaf beetles)
(202) 633-4557

Kula, Robert
Hymenoptera: Braconidae (braconid flies)
(202) 633-4558

Lingafelter, Steven
Coleoptera: Cerambycidae (long-horned beetles)
(202) 633-4560

McKamey, Stuart
Cicadellidae (leafhoppers)
(202) 633-4562

Miller, Gary
Aphidae (aphids)
(301) 504-6896

Nickle, David
Thysanoptera (thrips)
(301) 504-0719

Norrbom, Allen
Diptera: Tephritidae (fruit flies)
(202) 633-4564

Ochoa, Ronald
Acari (plant feeding mites)
(301) 504-7890

Pogue, Michael
Lepidoptera: Noctuoidea (owlet moths)
(202) 633-4566

Prena, Jens
Coleoptera: Curculionidae & related families (weevils)
(202) 633-1019

Scheffer, Sonja
Diptera: Agromyzidae (leaf miner flies) & Fergusoniidae (fergusoninid flies)
(301) 504-5317

Solis, M Alma
Lepidoptera: Pyraloidea (snout moths)
(202) 633-4573
Research Leader

Vandenberg, Natalia
Coleoptera: Coccinellidae, primarily Coccinellini (predatory lady beetles)
(202) 633-4575

White, Geoffrey
General Entomology
(301) 504-7041

Woodley, Norman
Diptera: Tachinidae (tachinid flies) and Stratiomyidae (soldier flies)
(202) 633-4576

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Mycology and Nematology Genetic Diversity and Biology Laboratory
The mission ofthis locaton is to increase the knowledge and application of the systematics of fungi essential to solving problems in sustainable and conventional agriculture. Research emphasis is on organisms important as pathogens that threaten the production of a safe and abundant food supply and biological control agents of insects and diseases in order to reduce the need for chemical inputs in agriculture. On-line information about plant-associated fungi is provided to users through Internet access to electronic databases. The U.S. National Fungus Collections and databases about fungi serve as unique reference resources developed for use by customers throughout the world.

Taxonomic Specialists

Lisa Castlebury
Ustilaginales (smut and bunt fungi)
(301) 504-5270

Jo Anne Crouch
Uredinales (rust fungi)
(612) 626-2064

Steve Rehner
Insect-associated fungi
(301) 504-5326

Amy Rossman
Ascomycetes (canker-causing fungi)
(301) 504-5366

Gary Samuels
anthracnose fungi, Colletotrichum, Fusarium, biocontrol fungi especially Trichoderma
(301) 504-8279

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Last Modified: Mar 15, 2018
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