Recent Honors and Awards
The Dillon Lab
Michael Dillon, PI
I just work here (see the rest of the website for more info).
Sarah DePaolo, MS Zoology and Physiology
I joined the Dillon lab in May 2013 beginning my research on pollinator abundance and diversity in wind farm developments in southern Wyoming. The data I collect will, in part, allow us to build a model to inform land managers on landscape determinants of pollinator communities in remote and undersampled areas of Wyoming. I completed my undergraduate degree at Johns Hopkins University and have since worked in Rocky Mountain National Park, Waterton Lakes National Park and Oregon State University with wolves, bighorn sheep, boreal toads, elk, and aspen. While my interests are broad and varied, I hope to continue to work with agencies and the public to improve conservation efforts through a better understanding of ecological complexity.
Susma Giri, PhD, Ecology
I received my undergraduate degree in Forestry, from Tribhuvan University, Nepal before joining the Dillon lab as a graduate student in January 2012. As an undergraduate, I studied the feeding ecology of Himalayan serow, a near-threatened goat antelope, in the Annapurna Conservation Area, Nepal. I am broadly interested in understanding the ecological impacts of changing environments and how the organisms can adapt to these changes through modifications in their physiology. My dissertation research focuses on the effects of environmental temperatures on nutritional physiology of bees. Currently, I am measuring how bee parasite loads vary with changing temperatures.
Giri, S., Aryal, A., Koirala, R., Adhikari, B., and Raubenheimer, D. 2011. Feeding ecology and distribution of Himalayan serow (Capricornis thar) in Annapurna Conservation Area, Nepal. World Journal of Zoology 6(1): 80-85.
Olivia H.A. Nater, MS Zoology and Physiology
I am researching the impacts of recent climate change on native bee populations by conducting a three-year census of native bees and plants at several sites in Albany County, WY, to investigate how phenology, abundance and diversity have changed in the past few decades. By exposing overwintering bee and plant species to a range of temperature regimes in both the lab and the field, I am also trying to determine whether climate change has the potential to cause "plant-pollinator mismatch", a temporal decoupling of spring bee emergence and first flowering. My goal is to develop a good understanding of what drives changes in pollinator populations so that we can prevent their further decline in light of increasing anthropogenic disturbance.
Jessica Vogt, MS Zoology and Physiology
I began working in the lab as an undergraduate researcher developing a corrosion caste method for measuring bumblebee tracheal systems. After receiving a BS in Zoology from the University of Wyoming in 2012, I immediately began working on my MS in the Dillon lab. My thesis work focuses on the oxygen limitation hypothesis for insect gigantism. I have found hypermetry of tracheal investment across body size in Bombus impatiens (Vogt and Dillon, 2013) and have measured shifts in tracheole size across among bumblebee sisters from the same nest (Vogt and Dillon, in prep.). Currently, I am interested in the ability of bumblebees to deliver oxygen during flight in reduced atmospheric oxygen levels.
Vogt, J.R. and M.E. Dillon. 2013. Allometric scaling of tracheal morphology among bumblebee sisters (Apidae: Bombus): compensation for oxygen limitation at large body sizes? Physiological and Biochemical Zoology 86(5): 576-587.
Guo Cong, Department of Ecology, Sichuan University, Chengdu, Sichuan, PRC.
Robert Dudley, Department of Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley, CA
Melanie Frazier, Western Ecology Branch of the EPA, Corvallis, OR
Ray Huey, Department of Biology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Rongsong Liu, Department of Mathematics and Program in Ecology, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY
Jeff Lozier, Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, AL.
Sanjay Sane, National Centre for Biological Sciences, Banglore, India
Brent Sinclair, Department of Biology, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada.
Jamie Strange, USDA-ARS Pollinating Insects Research Unit, Logan UT
Lusha Tronstad, Wyoming Natural Diversity Database, University of Wyoming.
George Wang, Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology, Tubingen, Germany
Yang WeiKang, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Urumqi, Xinjiang, PRC.
An undergraduate researcher known for her crazy literature searches and intense bee identification skills, Christy occasionally tried to shut down the interlibrary loan system. As an undergraduate researcher in the Dillon lab, Christy worked on seasonal variation in body size of native bees, research she presented at SICB 2012. Since graduating with a BS in Biology, she has worked as a researcher on several large projects researching native bees in agricultural systems.
Brandon Ray Buckio
Brandon graduated with a BS in Zoology with a concentration in ecology. He plans to enroll in a graduate program focusing on conservation ecology, but not before taking some time off to gain some experience doing various internships. His work in the Dillon lab, presented at SICB 2012, focused on allometry of Bombus spiracles.
John Bruno (aka "Brawno"), EMT in Casper Wyoming
John graduated with Biology and Physiology degrees and is currently an EMT in Casper, Wyoming. While in the lab, he spent the summer helping Olivia in the field. During the summer he chased bees with a net, counted flowers, and processed bee corpses. Besides frolicking in fields chasing after bees and pinning their bodies to styrofoam, he also enjoys the hooligans' sport played by gentlemen-rugby.
Sadie L. Todd, CLM Intern
Sadie graduated from the University of Missouri - Columbia with a BA in Biological Sciences in 2010, and began studying plant-pollinator-antagonist interactions as an undergraduate with Dr. Candace Galen. She investigated how floral volatiles from the alpine wildflower Polemonium viscosum alter Bombus balteatus and Formica neorufibarbas gelida preferences. In 2009, I interned with Drs. Patricia Parker and Sharon Deem from the University of Missouri - St. Louis and the St. Louis Zoo on Plasmodium avian malaria vectors on Galapagos birds. She also started working for Dr. Krissa Skogen from the Chicago Botanic Garden on plant-pollinator interactions and reproductive biology. In 2010, she worked for Drs. Candace Galen and Emmanuel Liscum looking at phototropin genes in Arabadopsis, work I presented at BSA in 2010. After graduation, she began working full time for Drs. Krissa Skogen and Jeremie Fant at the Chicago Botanic Garden. The majority of that work focused on a rare endemic plant, Oenothera harringtonii, and its hawkmoth pollinators. In 2013, she joined the Dillon lab an an intern on the wind farm and pollinators project. In addition to extensive fieldwork (see photo), collating vegetation data and identifying plants, she helped process and identify extensive insect collections and blogged about her internship. Her research interests include animal behavior, mutualism and parasitism, entomology, science outreach and conservation ecology. Sadie is currently ...
Skogen, K., E. Hilpman, S.L.Todd, and J. Fant. 2012. Microsatellite primers in Oenothera haringtonii (Onagraceae), and annual endemic to the shortgrass prairie of Colorado. American Journal of Botany Primer Notes and Protocols in the Plant Sciences 99(8):e313-6.