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Erika Machtinger

  • Assistant Professor of Entomology
Erika Machtinger

University Park, PA 16802
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Education

  1. Postdoctoral Research Associate, USDA, ARS
  2. Ph.D., Entomology, University of Florida
  3. M. S., Entomology, University of Florida
  4. B. S., Wildlife Conservation, University of Delaware

Arriving - July 2017

Department Research Focus Areas:
Disease Biology & Ecology
Ecological Applications

Research Interests:

  • Veterinary Entomology
  • Zoonotic Disease Vectors
  • Integrated Pest Management
  • Insect Behavior

I am interested in reducing the health risks to humans, as well as wild and domesticated animals, associated with arthropod vectors. Research in this area can be directly related to vector control, or focus on agricultural pests and food safety. Integrated research is necessary to develop novel control methods for vectors and agricultural pests as health risks increase from a growing population, climate change, and increased pesticide resistance.

My work is an interdisciplinary combination of population and chemical ecology, behavior studies, parasitoid-host interactions, biological control, molecular biology, and more recently, toxicology and wildlife biology. I have integrated field and laboratory work to improve the understanding of the use of biological control for pests that transmit pathogens that cause disease. I have a continuing desire to address arthropod issues that concern public and animal health and well-being by using both practical and novel approaches.

Specific research projects:

  • Filth fly control on livestock, poultry, and equine facilities
  • transmission of zoonotic disease via arthropod vectors
  • behavior of insect parasitoids
  • integrated tick management
  • tick-host associations
  • arthropod pests of wildlife

Extension:
The Penn State Veterinary Entomology Laboratory will focus on developing educational materials for Extension agents and the public on arthropods affecting human and animal health, in particular pest control on livestock, poultry, and animal facilities, and tick control and awareness.

Publications:
Refereed Research Publications

Taylor, C., E.T. Machtinger, and C.J. Geden. 2016. Manure preferences and postemergence learning of two of common filth fly parasitoids, Spalangia cameroni and Muscidifurax raptor (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae). PLoS One. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0167893

Weeks, E N.I., E.T. Machtinger, S.A. Gezman, P.E. Kaufman, and C. J. Geden. 2016.  Effect of four commercial fungal formulations on mortality and sporulation of house flies (Musca domestica) and stable flies (Stomoxys calcitrans). Medical and Veterinary Entomology. Accepted

Machtinger, E.T., E.N.I. Weeks, C. J. Geden, and P.E. Kaufman. 2016. House fly (Musca domestica) (Diptera: Muscidae) mortality after exposure to commercial fungal formulations in a sugar bait. Biocontrol Science and Technology. 26: 1444-1450.

Machtinger, E.T., E. N. I. Weeks, C.J. Geden. 2016. Oviposition deterrence and immature survival of filth flies (Diptera:Muscidae) when exposed to commercial fungal products. Journal of Insect Science. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jisesa/iew032. Featured in “Entomology Today” https://entomologytoday.org/tag/erika-machtinger/

Machtinger, E.T., N.C. Leppla, J.A. Hogsette.  2016. An assessment of the seasonal abundance and species composition of filth flies and their parasitoids on Florida equine farms to improve biological control. Neotropical Entomology, 45: 433-440.

Machtinger, E.T., C.J. Geden, E.D. LoVullo, and P.D. Shirk. 2016. Impacts of extended laboratory rearing on female fitness in the parasitoid Spalangia cameroni (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae) with an analysis of Wolbachia strains in Florida colonies. Annals of the Entomological Society of America. 109: 176-182.

Machtinger, E.T., and C.J. Geden. 2015. Comparison of the olfactory preferences of four filth fly pupal parasitoid species (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae) for hosts in equine and bovine manure. Environmental Entomology, 44:1417-1424.

Machtinger, E.T., C.J. Geden, and N.C. Leppla. 2015. The effect of linear distance on the parasitism of house fly (Diptera: Muscidae) hosts by Spalangia cameroni (Hymenoptera: Pteromalida). PLoS One. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0129105.

Machtinger, E.T., C.J. Geden, P.E. Teal, N.C. Leppla. 2015. Comparison of host-seeking strategies used by the filth fly pupal parasitoids Spalangia cameroni and Muscidifurax raptor (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae). Environmental Entomology, 44: 330-337.

Machtinger, E.T., C.J. Geden, N.C. Leppla, J.A. Hogsette. 2014. Oviposition preference and development of house flies and stable flies in six common substrates found in equine facilities. Journal of Medical Entomology, 51: 1144 – 1150.

Machtinger, E.T., and C.J. Geden. 2013. Host location by Spalangia cameroni in equine associated substrates. Biological Control, 65: 130-134.

Refereed Teaching and Extension Publications

Machtinger, E.T., C.J. Geden, P.E. Kaufman, and A. M. House. 2015. Use of Pupal Parasitoids as Biological Control Agents of Filth Flies on Equine Facilities. Journal of Integrated Pest Management. DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jipm/pmv015. Featured in “Entomology Today” https://entomologytoday.org/tag/erika-machtinger/

Machtinger, E.T. 2014. Using a combined approach of guided-inquiry and direct instruction to explore how physiology affects behavior. American Biology Teacher. 76: 595 – 600.

Machtinger, E.T., N.C. Leppla and C. Saunders. 2013. Pest management and perceptions for equine farms in North and Central Florida. EDIS. University of Florida, Gainesville, FL.

Machtinger, E.T..  2011. Eye Gnats, Liohippelates spp.  EDIS publication EENY-485. http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/livestock/flies/liohippelates.htm

Machtinger, E.T. 2007.  Wildlife-Friendly Wind Energy. USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife Habitat Council Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 48.

Machtinger, E.T. 2007. Wetlands (Temporarily Flooded).  USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife Habitat Council Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 47.

Machtinger, E.T. 2007.  Native Freshwater Mussels.  USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife Habitat Council Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 46.

Machtinger, E.T. 2007. Riparian Systems.  USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife Habitat Council Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 45.

Machtinger, E.T. 2007. Cutthroat Trout.  USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife Habitat Council Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 43.

Smith, E.T.  2007. Scrub-Shrub Birds.  USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife Habitat Council Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 42.

Smith, E.T.  2007. Early Successional Habitat.  USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife Habitat Council Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 41.

Smith, E.T.  2006. Bog Turtle. USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and Wildlife HabitatCouncil Fish and Wildlife Habitat Management Leaflet, Number 44.

Book Chapters

Machtinger, E.T., and C.J. Geden. Biological control of livestock pests: Parasitoids. In C. Garros and J. Bouyer (eds), Ecology and Control of Vector-Borne Diseases, Wageningen Academic Publishers, Wageningen, Gelderland, The Netherlands. In press