Michele B. Price
Ph D. Student & Teaching Assistant
University of Wisconsin-Madison
445 Russell labs, 1630 Linden Drive
Madison, Wisconsin 53706 USA
I love the outdoors and all creatures, especially the little beasts that rule the earth--the INSECTS!!! What has attracted me particularly to studying beetles are their diverse beauty and the relationships each beetle species holds with other organisms, from bacteria to fungi to flowers and so on....
So naturally, my studies have focused on the systematics of beetles. For my Master's degree I conducted a comprehensive state survey of two closely related groups of beetles, Nitidulidae ("sap beetles") & Kateretidae ("short-winged flower beetles"), in Wisconsin. I traveled to various natural areas, including unique habitats (e.g. oak savanna, old growth hemlock forest) and recorded the beetles' distribution and natural history. Prior to this survey, species diversity, habitat and food preferences of these beetles in Wisconsin were little known.
Currently, I am conducting doctoral research on a particular "sap beetle", Conotelus, which occurs mainly in the tropics on flowering plants. I am revising and conducting a phylogenetic analysis of the genus Conotelus. Revision of this taxon is badly needed and much remains unknown about these magnificent creatures, including species distributions and plant relationships.
In addition to research, another passion of mine is teaching. I have been teaching for nearly 10 years at a variety of levels from outreach programs for young children to college level biology and entomology classes. Teaching has provided me the opportunity to continue to challenge myself and my students, explore my creativity, learn, and inspire future scientists. I look forward to creating hands-on learning experiences to help individuals, young and old, connect to the natural world.
Ph.D. (Entomology Major & Distributed Minor) - University of Wisconsin, Madison. Expected 2008.
Dissertation Title: Revision and Phylogenetic Analysis of Conotelus Erichson (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae)
M.S. (Entomology) - University of Wisconsin, Madison. 2003.
Thesis Title: A Comprehensive Survey of the Sap and Short-Winged Flower Beetles of Wisconsin (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae, Kateretidae). 407 pp., 198 figs.
B.S. (Entomology) - University of Wisconsin, Madison. 1999.