Department of Entomology


Richard Redakentomology

Professor of Entomology and Department Chair

Location: Entomology 238
Tel: (951) 827-7250
E-mail: richard.redak@ucr.edu

Research Specialization

Research in my lab is directed toward understanding the interactions between insect herbivores and their host plants and involves understanding the impacts that both host-plant and insect herbivore have upon one another. Such research involves investigating individual plant-insect interactions to community level processes. This involves determining the roles that plant attributes (plant defensive mechanisms, phenology, spatial distribution) have in influencing insect herbivore host-plant selection, feeding, growth, development, reproduction, and ultimately fitness and species distribution. Additionally, studies of plant-insect interactions must take into account the effects of insect herbivory upon host-plant populations under a variety of different environmental conditions. This includes not only estimating the impact of insect herbivory upon individual host plants (e.g. estimates of defoliation, leaf-loss, altered plant fitness and distribution, economic losses to crops where applicable) but also includes determining how these impacts are affected by changes in the biotic and abiotic environment of the plant and insect herbivore. As UCR is located at the 3-way interface between 1) one of the world's major urban centers, 2) major agricultural production areas, and 3) unique coastal, mountain, and desert ecosystems, we are provided with a unique opportunity to investigate the interactions between plants and insect herbivores within all 3 types of areas and their interfaces. From an applied perspective this includes studies of phytophagous insects found in ornamental, floricultural, nursery, landscape and turfgrass plants as well as determining the impact of urbanization on native plant-insect associations. Such studies include the direct and indirect effects of air and water anthropogenic pollutants (CO2, ozone, acidic and particulate precipitation, use of run-off water), as well as other environmental stresses (e.g. habitat loss) upon plant-insect interactions. Currently, we are undertaking studies investigating 1) the use of whole insect communities to assess community recovery following disturbance, 2) the impact of land management practices on insect community structure 3) the importance of insect community structure and biomass distribution in determining the habitat quality of endangered species of vertebrate insectivores, 4) integrated pest management approaches directed toward controlling the glassy-winged sharpshooter, and 5) the host-plant selection and utilization by floricultural insect pests.

Former Institution

 Colorado State University


BS Biology 1979
University of New Mexico
MS Biology 1982
University of New Mexico
PhD Entomology 1989
Colorado State University


2010 - Recognition Award in Urban Entomology, Entomological Society of America
2010 – UCR Entomology Graduate Student Association Faculty Award
2009 – Recognition Award in Urban Entomology, Pacific Pranch of the Entomological Society of America
2008 - Distinguished Achievement Award in Horticultural Entomology, Pacific Branch of the Entomological Society of America
2007 - University of California, Riverside, Academic Senate Distinguished Service Award
2002 - California Association of Nurserymen Researcher of the Year Award
1995 - California Association of Nurserymen Education & Research Award, Centinela Chapter
1994 - California Association of Nurserymen Education & Research Award, Centinela Chapter



Waterworth, R. A., R. A. Redak and J. G. Millar. 2011. Pheromone-baited traps for assessment of seasonal activity and population densities of mealybug species (Hemiptera:Pseudococcidae) in nurseries producing ornamental plants. J. Econ. Entomol. 104:555-565.

Prentice, T. R. R. A. Redak and C. W. Barrows. 2011. Survey methodology and distribution of a cryptic Jerusalem cricket species, Stenopehnatus cahuilaensis Tinkham (Orthoptera: Stenopelmatidae: Stenopelmatinae). Pan-Pacific Entomol. 87:1-14.

Sorensen, M. A., J. A. Bethke, and R. A. Redak. 2010. Potential host plants of Trirhabda geminata (Coleoptera: Chrysomeliidae): impacts on survival, development, and feeding. Environ. Entomol. 39:159-163.

Prentice, T. R. and R. A. Redak. 2009. A new species of Ceraticelius Simon from southern Califonria and a redescription of ,em>Ceraticelus phylax Ivie and Barrows, its probable sister species (Araneae:Linyphiidae). Zootaxa 2233:39-56.

Chappell, M. A., N. W. Bailey, R. A. Redak, M. A. Antolin and M. Zuk. 2009. Metabolic similarity despite striking behavioral divergence: aerobic performance in low- and high-density forms of the Mormon cricket. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology.

Preston, K. L. J. T. Rotenberry, R. A. Redak, and M. F. Allen. 2008. Habitat Shifts of Endangered Species under Altered Climate Conditions: Importance of Biotic Interactions. Global Change Biology 14:2501-2515.

Thompson, S. N., Redak, R.A. 2008. Parasitism of an insect Manduca sexta alters diet consumption and nutrient utilization to influence developmental success of the parasitoid Cotesia congregata. J. Comp. Physiol. B. 178:515-527.

Thompson, S. N. and R. A. Redak. 2007. Nicotine moderates the effects of macronutrient balance on nutrient intake by parasitized Manduca sexta L. J. Comp. Physiol B 177:375-391.

Blua, M. J., K. Campbell, D. J. W. Morgan, and R. A. Redak. 2006. Impact of a screen barrier on dispersion behavior of Homalodisca coagulata (Hemiptera : Cicadellidae). J. Econ. Entomol. 98:1664-1668.

Coviella, C. E., J. F. Garcia, D. R. Jeske, R. A. Redak, and R. F. Luck. 2006. Feasibility of tracking within-field movements of Homalodisca coagulata (Hemiptera : Cicadellidae) and estimating its densities using fluorescent dusts in mark-release-recapture experiments. J. Econ. Entomol. 99:1051-1057

Thompson, S.N. and R.A. Redak. 2005. Feeding behaviour and nutrient selection in an insect Manduca sexta L and alterations induced by parasitism. J. Comp. Physiol. A. 191:909-923.

Thompson, S.N., R.A. Redak and L.W. Wang. 2005. Nutrition interacts with parasitism to influence growth and physiology of the insect Manduca sexta L. J. Exp. Biol. 208 (4): 611-623.

Thompson, S.N., R.A. Redak and L.W. Wang. 2005. Host nutrition determines blood nutrient composition and mediates parasite developmental success: Manduca sexta L. parasitized by Cotesia congregata (Say). J. Exp. Biol. (4): 625-635.

Burks, R.A. and R.A. Rdak. 2004. New species of Pteromalidae and Torymidae (Hymenoptera: Chalcidoidea) from California, with taxonomic notes. Zootaxa 606: 1-20.

Redak, R.A., A.H. Purcell, J.R.S. Lopes, M.J. Blua, R.F. Mizell and P.C. Andersen. 2004. The biology of xylem fluid-feeding insect vectors of Xylella fastidiosa and their relation to disease epidemiology. Ann. Review Entomol. 49: 243-270.

Dunning, C. E. & R. A. Redak. 2003. Press. Preference and performance of a generalist insect herbivore on Quercus agrifolia and Q. engelmannii seedlings from a southern California oak woodland. Forest Ecology and Management 174:593-603.

Burger, J. C., R. A. Redak, E.A. Allen, J.T. Rotenberry, and M.F. Allen. 2003. Restoring arthropod communities in coastal sage scrub. Conservation Biology 17:460-467.

Burks, R. A. & R. A. Redak.2003. The identity and reinstatement of Homalodisca liturata Ball and Phera lacerta Fowler (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae). Proc. Entomol.l Soc. Wash. 105:674-678.

Housman, D. C., M. V. Price, & R. A. Redak. 2002. Architecture of coastal and desert Encelia farinosa (Asteraceae): consequences of plastic and heritable variation in leaf characters. Amer. J. Botany 89:1303-1310.

Thompson, S. N., R. A. Redak & D. B. Borchardt. 2002. The glucogenic response of a parasitized insect Manduca sexta L. is partially mediated by differential nutrient intake. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta-General Subj. 1571:138-150.

Thompson, S. N., R. A. Redak, & L. W. Wang. 2001. Altered dietary nutrient intake maintains metabolic homeostasis in parasitized larvae of the insect Manduca sexta L. J. Exp. Biol. 204:4065-4080.

Burger, J. C., M. A. Patten, T. R. Prentice, & R. A. Redak. 2001. Evidence for spider community resistance to invasion by non-native spiders. Biol. Conserv. 98:241-249.

Luft, P. A., T. D. Paine, & R. A. Redak. 2001. Limiting the potential for intraspecific competition: Regulation of Trioza eugeniae oviposition on unexpanded leaf tissue. Ecol. Entomol. 26:395-403.

Prentice T. R., J. C. Burger, W. R. Icenogle, & R. A. Redak. 2001. Spiders from riversidian coastal sage scrub with comparisons to Diegan scrub fauna (Arachnida: Araneae). Pan-Pac. Entomol. 77:90-122.

Blua, M. J., R. A. Redak, D. J. W. Morgan, & H. S. Costa. 2001. Seasonal flight activity of two Homalodisca species (Homoptera:Cicadellidae) that spread Xylella fastidiosa in southern California. J. Econ Entomol. 94:1506-1510.

Bethke, J. A., M. J. Blua, & R. A. Redak. 2001. Effect of selected insecticides on Homalodisca coagulata (Homoptera:Cicadellidae) and transmission of Oleander leaf scorch in a greenhouse study. J. Econ Entomol. 94:1031-1036

Bethke, J. A., K. A. Campbell, M. J. Blua, R. A. Redak & D. A. Yanega. 2001. Range extension of Pseneo punctatus Fox and notes on predation of an introduced sharpshooter, Homalodisca coagulata (Say). Pan-Pac. Entomol. 77:54-56

Redak, R. A. 2000. Arthropods and Multispecies Habitat Conservation Plans: Are We Missing Something? Environ.Manage. 26S:97-107.

Costa, H. S., M. S. Blua, J. A. Bethke, & R. A. Redak. 2000. Transmission of Xylella fastidiosa to oleander by the glassywinged sharpshooter, Homalodisca coagulata. HortScience 35:1265-1267.

Osborne, K. H. & R. A. Redak. 2000. Microhabitat conditions associated with the distribution of post-diapause larvae of Euphydryas editha quino (Behr) (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae). Annl. Entomol. Soc. Amer. 93:110-114

Thompson, S. N. & R. A. Redak. 2000. Interactions of dietary proteins and carbohydrate determine blood sugar level and regulate selection in the insect Manduca sexta L. Biochim. et Biophys. Acta 1523:91-102.

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
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Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

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417 Entomology Bldg.

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