Arkansas entomologist named society FellowJuly 11, 2011
Fred Stephen, University Professor of Entomology, University of Arkansas
Howell Medders, Division of Agriculture Communications
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — The Entomological Society of America governing board announced July 6 that Fred Stephen, University Professor of entomology at the University of Arkansas, is one of 10 members nationwide named a Fellow of the society in 2011.
Stephen conducts research and extension programs in forest insect ecology in the University of Arkansas System's statewide Division of Agriculture. He teaches and mentors graduate students in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences on the Fayetteville campus.
Stephen joined the university's entomology department in 1974 after receiving a Ph.D. degree in forest entomology from the University of California, Berkeley. His study of insects in Arkansas forests includes population dynamics, biological control, sampling methods, predictive models, natural history, development rates, community interactions, pesticide impacts and forest health.
Stephen is currently studying wood wasps in Arkansas. The European wood wasp, which is not yet found in Arkansas, is a recent immigrant to pine forests in New York where it has caused significant damage. Developing a comprehensive profile of wood wasps found in the Arkansas will help foresters deal with the damaging species if it appears here, Stephen said.
A computer-based model that predicts southern pine beetle infestation growth and tree mortality in pine forests was developed by Stephen and colleagues in a multi-state project involving several disciplines. The model has helped forest managers reduce the severity of damage by southern pine beetle infestations.
In another collaborative project, Stephen led a study of significant oak mortality in the Ozarks associated with an outbreak of red oak borers.
Entomology department head Robert Wiedenmann said, "Fred’s selection as an ESA Fellow is an excellent endorsement of his many contributions to the discipline of entomology throughout his career."
As a widely recognized authority in forest entomology, Stephen has testified on forest management issues before the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry and the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs.