The hemipteran suborder Heteroptera, or true bugs, comprises about 45,000 species in ~88 families and is one of the largest groups of non-holometabolous insects. True bugs are found in terrestrial, aquatic, and even marine habitats and their feeding preferences range from phytophagous to zoophagous and hematophagous, involving monophagy, mixed feeding, and parasitism. The group includes plant pests, beneficial species used in integrated pest management, but with the Triatominae, or kissing bugs, also powerful human disease vectors.
Our lab at the University of California, Riverside (UCR) conducts systematic and evolutionary research on Reduviidae, the assassin bugs, the minute litter bugs Dipsocoromorpha, and Miridae, the plant bugs, among other groups.
Some ongoing and recent projects