Stephanie Castillo

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I joined the Heteropteran Systematics Lab in July of 2017 as a Ph.D. student after receiving my B.S. degree in Biology at San Diego State University. While earning my B.S., I worked on an SDSU and California Academy of Sciences joint project to resolve phylogenetic relationships within Nippononychidae (Opiliones: Laniatores) as an IMSD Scholar in Dr. Marshal Hedin’s lab and as an NSF-REU intern in Dr. Charles Griswold’s lab. I also worked on the taxonomic revision of Plyomydas (Diptera: Mydidae) with Dr. Torsten Dikow as an NSF-REU intern at the National Museum of Natural History. These experiences sparked my desire to pursue entomological systematics.


My current research at UCR focuses on untangling phylogenetic relationships within Peiratinae—an early diverging clade within the Higher Reduviidae. Members of this subfamily reportedly inflict the most painful bite of all Reduviidae and exhibit aposematic color patterns. We hope to infer phylogenetic relationships between genera and investigate the evolution of putatively aposematic color patterns in Peiratinae using morphological and molecular data.

My curriculum vitae (CV) can be viewed here.