Department of Entomology
ProfessorNatural Science Bldg.
288 Farm Lane Room 445A
East Lansing, MI 48824
PhD - University of California, Berkeley (1998)
MS - State University of New York, College of Environmental Science & Forestry (1995)
BS - State University of New York, College of Environmental Science & Forestry (1992)
See a list of Anthony Cognato's publications on Google Scholar.
I enjoy studying insect diversity and a sharing my knowledge and excitement with others. Over 20 years, I have developed an international research program in insect systematics and collection stewardship. My research program has been continuously funded since 2003, which has helped me to educate graduate and undergraduate students, revitalize the A.J. Cook Arthropod Research Collection, and revise the study of bark beetle systematics.
Current assignment: Teaching 20% | Research 80%
As an educator, much of my time and resources are focused on advancing the knowledge and skills of my graduate students. I believe that an investment in our graduate students is an investment in MSU. These students provide the intellectual fodder and physical labor, which often leads to innovative and productive research. I have advised eight Ph.D. and eight masters’ students. I also served (and serve) on graduate student committees for several other departments. I encourage students to pursue their own systematic research interests within the context of my research program. This has led to my collaboration on nine non-bark beetle research topics ranging from termites to ants. These collaborations not only benefited my research program and MSU’s reputation, but also broadened my reputation as an insect systematist. I currently teach graduate classes in Taxonomy of Adult Insects and Spider Biology. My philosophical objective in classroom teaching is to strengthen independent thinking among graduate students. To instill this objective, I restructured the taxonomy course and designed the spider class so to incorporate modern pedagogical methods such as learner-centered teaching.
Systematics is the study of organismal diversity, relationships and the classification of these relationships. It forms the foundation for the biological sciences through the creation of a common communication system concerning all life. Without a means to identify a study organism, the replication of biological experiments or the management of pests would not be possible. In addition, knowledge of organismal relationships (phylogenetics) provides a predictive framework for studies concerning species biology, ecology and evolution. My research program focuses on bark beetles (Scolytinae). In general, bark beetles function ecologically as decomposers of wood. However, some aggressive species and, to a lesser extent, benign species kill live trees, especially during periods of environmental stress. These pests cause severe economic and ecological losses, which often equates to millions of dollars. However, efforts to study and/or control this group are hampered by a lack of taxonomic knowledge. Hence my current taxonomic research of tropical bark beetles increases the knowledge of species diversity, the relationships among the species, and results in better means for their identification. Other scientists and diagnosticians use these results to improve surveys for potential pests. In addition, I educate national and international technicians, undergraduates, and graduate students in the identification and systematics of bark beetles. Thereby, perpetuating knowledge of these beetles through space and time.
- Holistic Insect Systemtatics
- 2006-Present - Asst., Assoc., Full Professor, Dept. of Entomology, Michigan State University
- 2000-2006 - Assistant Professor, Dept. of Entomology, Texas A&M University
- 1999-2000 - Post-doctoral Researcher, Dept. of Entomology Biology, The Natural History Museum, London/Imperial College
- Sandoval Rodriguez, C., A.I. Cognato*, C.A. Righi. 2017. Bark and ambrosia beetle (Curculionidae: Scolytinae) diversity found in agricultural and fragmented forests in Piracicaba-SP, Brazil. Environmental Entomology 46:1254-1263. *Corresponding author.
- Gao, L., Y. Li, Y. Xu, J. Hulcr, A.I. Cognato, J-G. Wang, R-T. Ju. 2017. Acanthotomicus sp. (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae), a destructive insect pest of North American sweetgum Liquidambar styraciflua in eastern China. Journal of Economic Entomology, 110: 1592-1595.
- Gohli, J. L.R. Kirkendall, S.M. Smith, A.I. Cognato, J. Hulcr and B.H. Jordal. 2017. Biological factors contributing to bark and ambrosia beetle species diversification. Evolution, 71: 1258-1272.
- Hughes, M. A., J. J. Riggins, F. H. Koch, A.I. Cognato, C. Anderson, J. P. Formby, T. J. Dreaden, R. C. Ploetz, J. A. Smith. 2017. No rest for the laurels: symbiotic invaders causes unprecedented damage to southern USA forests. Biological Invasions, 19: 2143–2157.
- Knížek, M. and A.I. Cognato*. 2017. Validity of Ips chinensis Kurentzov and Kononov confirmed with DNA data. Zoological Systematics, 42: 229-235. Invited paper. *Corresponding author..
- Peris*, D., M.M. Solórzano Kraemer, S.M. Smith, and A.I. Cognato*. 2017. Eoplaytpus jordali gen.n. et sp.n., the first described Platypodinae (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) from Baltic amber. Arthropod Systematics and Phylogeny, 75: 185-194. *Corresponding authors.
- Seltmann, K.C., N.S. Cobb, L.F. Gall, C.R. Bartlett, M.A. Basham, I. Betancourt, C. Bills, B. Brandt, R.L Brown, C. Bundy, M.S. Caterino, C. Chapman, A. Cognato, J. Colby, S.P. Cook, K.M. Daly, L. Dyer, N.M. Franz, J.K. Gelhaus, C.C. Grinter, C.E. Harp, R.L. Hawkins, S.L. Heydon, G.M. Hill, S. Huber, N. Johnson, A.Y. Kawahara, L.S. Kimsey, B.C. Kondratieff, F-T. Krell, L. Leblanc, S. Lee, C.J. Marshall, L.M. Mccabe, J.V. Mchugh, K.L.Menard, P.A. Opler, N. Palffy-Muhoray, N. Pardikes, M.A. Peterson, N.E. Pierce, A. Poremski, D.S. Sikes, J.D. Weintraub, D. Wikle, J.M. Zaspel and G. Zolnerowich. 2017. LepNet: The Lepidoptera of North America Network. ZooKeys, 4247:73-
- Short, D.P.G., K. O’Donnell, J.E. Stajich, M.C. Berger, A.M. Macias, E.J. Spahr, J. Hulcr, T. Kijimoto, A. Eskalen, C.C. Bateman, J. Skelton, S.C. Lynch, A.I. Cognato, M.F. Cooperband, M.T. Kasson. 2017. PCR multiplexes discriminate Fusarium symbionts of invasive Euwallacea ambrosia beetles associated with canker and dieback diseases of trees in the United States. Plant Disease, 101: 233-240.
- Smith, S.M. and A.I. Cognato*. 2017. Camptocerus lucwildi Smith and Cognato, new species (Curculionidae: Scolytinae: Scolytini) from Ecuador. The Coleopterists Bulletin, 71:445-448. *Corresponding author.
- Smith, S.M., R.A. Beaver, and A.I. Cognato*. 2017. The ambrosia beetle Ambrosiophilus peregrinus, introduced to the United States, is Ambrosiophilus nodulosus (n. comb.) (Curculionidae: Scolytinae). The Coleopterists Bulletin, 71: 552-553. *Corresponding author.
- Smith, S.M*. A.V. Petrov, A.I. Cognato*. 2017. Beetles (Coleoptera) of Peru: A survey of the Families. Curculionidae: Scolytinae. Coleopterists Bulletin, 71: 77-94 *Corresponding authors.
- Taft W.H and A.I. Cognato*. 2017. Recognition of a new Carmenta clearwing moth species from New Mexico supported by morphology and mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I data (Lepidoptera: Sesiidae: Sesiinae: Synanthedonini) Zootaxa, 4337: 436-444. *Corresponding author.
- DeMarco*, B.B. and A.I. Cognato. 2016. A multiple gene phylogeny reveals polyphyly among eastern North American Aphaenogaster species (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Zoologica Scripta, 45: 512-520.
- Smith, S.M. and A.I. Cognato. 2016. A revision of Coptonotus Chapuis, 1869 (Curculionidae: Coptontinae) with notes on its biology. The Coleopterists Bulletin, 70: 409-428.
- Taft, W.H, A.I. Cognato, and P.A. Opler. 2016. Phylogenetic analysis supports the recognition of Albuna beutenmulleri Skinner as a species distinct from A. pyramidalis Walker (Lepidoptera: Sesiidae). Journal of the Lepidopterists Society, 70: 211-217.
Tags: rpt committee