Statewide Mosquito and Tick Research & Surveillance

The Medical Entomology Lab at the Illinois Natural History Survey conducts research on and surveillance of mosquitoes and ticks that are of medical and veterinary concern to the State of Illinois. Our surveillance work includes conducting the statewide active surveillance programs for 1) ticks and tick-borne pathogens, 2) mosquito communities and arboviruses, and 3) mosquito-insecticide resistance monitoring. We work closely with the Illinois Department of Public Health on our surveillance projects.

Our research areas of interest are: the environmental associations of ticks and tick-borne disease agents; the invasion biology of Aedes albopictus (Asian tiger mosquito); the community ecology of mosquitoes; understanding the environmental and landscape determinants of arbovirus (e.g., EEE, West Nile, Heartland) transmission; environmental influences on parasite-vector interactions and evolution of insecticide resistance; improving our understanding of vector behavior (e.g., blood- and nectar-feeding, mating and oviposition-site seeking); and innovating and testing mosquito and tick control methods.

Cover photo courtesy of Joseph L. Spencer.