Murphy Lab

Plant - Insect Ecology

 
 

Research in the Murphy lab is primarily focused on the ecology and evolution of species interactions, specifically plant-insect interactions. Our goal is to understand why insects eat what they do and to approach this research by asking questions at multiple scales, from populations to communities to ecosystems. 


At the scale of populations and species, we are interested in why some herbivorous insects are specialists while others are generalists and how each of these groups choose their host plants.  At the scale of communities, we study how natural enemies affect community structure and population dynamics of herbivorous insects. Finally, at the ecosystem scale, we have projects that investigate how nutrient cycling, resource subsidies and other disturbances may affect interactions between herbivorous insects and their host plants both directly as well as indirectly by altering the impact that natural enemies and detritivores have on populations of herbivores.  At all scales, we are interested in how global change affects species interactions


Our research program is integrative, drawing on techniques and theory developed in a variety of disciplines including anatomy, behavior, biogeochemistry, botany, chemistry, ecology, entomology and evolutionary biology.

 

Welcome!

Dr. Shannon Murphy


Associate Professor

University of Denver


Boettcher West 302

2050 E. Iliff Ave

Denver, CO 80208


Shannon.M.Murphy[at]du.edu

Office: (303) 871-7571

Fax: (303) 871-3471

DU Organismal Biologists

Our lab is part of a larger group of ecologists and evolutionary biologists at the University of Denver.  Check out our group website to see what we are all up to!


DU Organismal Biologists



News from the Murphy Lab


July 2016 - Kylee and Laurel both highlighted on the DU news website! 


Kylee - From Moths to Mosquitos


Laurel - Impact of Wildfires


July 2016 - A big summer for Elizabeth - her first paper was accepted for publication!


July 2016 - Elizabeth won best student presentation at the Lepidopterists’ Society Meeting!


June 2016 - Shannon is tenured!


May 2016 - Congratulations to Elizabeth for winning the division of Natural Sciences and Math Graduate Student Service Award!!!


May 2016 - Congratulations to Dr. Grenis for successfully defending her PhD!  We are you going to miss you Kylee!


Congratulations to Lainey Slayter for receiving Distinction in Biology for her Honors’ Thesis!


Congratulations to Ryan Beshai and Tim Smith for receiving Summer Research Grants from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


March 2016 - So much great funding news to share!  Congratulations to both Mayra and Elizabeth for receiving 3 different grants in the last week!  Both received International Biodiversity Foundation grants to attend the Lepidopterists’ Society meetings this summer, Jefferson County Open Space grants and University of Denver Dissertation Fellowships!! 


Congratulations also to Elizabeth on receiving a Shubert Graduate student fellowship!


Shannon, Robin Tinghitella and Jennifer Hoffman received a Public Good Fund grant in support of their STEM summer camp for middle school girls, DU SciTech!


And finally, Shannon is off to Australia on an Internationalization grant to do fieldwork abroad!



February 2016 - Congratulations to Elizabeth for recent research funding from Sigma Xi and Boulder County!!!


January 2016 - Claudia has been admitted to the MS grad program - we can’t wait for her to start in Fall 2016!


October 2015 - Shannon and the Murphy lab are hosting the 26th Annual Meeting of the High Country Lepidopterists’ Society at the University of Denver on Saturday, October 24!


October 2015 - Elizabeth was awarded the Distinguished Graduate Community Leader Award from the University of Denver - Yay Elizabeth!!!


October 2015 - Congratulations to Lainey Slayter for receiving a Partners in Scholarship (PinS) grant from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


September 2015 - Congratulations to Mayra Vidal for passing her proposal exam!  Officially a PhD Candidate now!


June 2015 - Congratulations to Grace Sommerville for receiving a Summer Research Grant from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


Congratulations to Kylee and Mayra for receiving the Shubert Graduate student fellowships!!


May 2015 - Kylee’s first thesis chapter accepted at Journal of Insect Conservation!!!  Way to go co-authors Kylee and Bergen!


April 2015 - So much great news to report!!!  Congratulations Laurel Cepero for receiving a NSF GRFP!!!!  Laurel also received funding from the Explorer’s Club, Sigma Xi and the Lewis and Clark fund for her research!!


Congratulations to Elizabeth Barnes and Mayra Vidal, both of whom received funding for their research from the Jefferson County Open Space Small Grants program!!


February 2015 - Congratulations to Laurel Cepero for passing her written and oral exams!


January 2015 - Shannon and Robin Tinghitella were awarded a Faculty Development Grant to improve the general ecology class


November 2014 - Congratulations to Mayra Vidal for passing her written and oral exams!


July 2014 - We have moved!  Our lab is now located in the Boettcher West penthouse (not as fancy as it sounds!). 


June 2014 - Congratulations to Bergen Tjossem for receiving Distinction in Biology for his Honors’ Thesis!


May 2014 - Laurel Cepero won the division of Natural Sciences and Math Graduate Student Service Award!!!


May 2014 - Congratulations to Tim Smith for receiving a Pustmueller Summer Fellowship!


September 2013 - Welcome Laurel Cepero and Mayra Vidal, both starting PhD’s in the lab!


June 2013 - Congratulations to Amy Flansburg, Jenny McCarty and MacKenzie Kjeldgaard for receiving Distinction in Biology for their Honors’ Theses!


May 2013 - Congratulations to Bergen Tjossem for receiving a Summer Research Grant from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


February 2013 - Our NSF RET grant was funded!  We look forward to welcoming elementary school teachers to our lab this summer!


January 2013 - Congratulations to Elizabeth Barnes for passing her written and oral exams!


December 2012 - Congratulations to Kylee Grenis for passing her proposal defense and becoming a PhD Candidate!!


November 2012 - Kylee Grenis’ paper was published in the Journal of the Lepidopterists’ Society - congratulations Kylee!


June 2012 - Congratulations to Jenn Vernick for receiving Distinction in Biology for her Honors’ Thesis!


June 2012 - Congratulations to MacKenzie Kjeldgaard and Amy Flansburg for receiving travel grants from the DU Undergraduate Research Center to attend the Ecological Society of America annual meeting.


May 2012 - Congratulations to MacKenzie Kjeldgaard and Jenny McCarty for receiving Summer Research Grants from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


March 2012 - Congratulations to Elizabeth Barnes for receiving a DU Graduate Studies Doctoral Fellowship for Inclusive Engagement!


January 2012 - Kylee Grenis successfully passed her written and oral exams!


January 2012 - Congratulations to Elizabeth Barnes for receiving a Sigma Xi grant!


December 2011 - Congratulations to Jenn Vernick for receiving a Partners in Scholarship (PinS) grant from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


May 2011 - Congratulations to Amy Flansburg for receiving a Summer Research Grant from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


May 2011 - Congratulations to MacKenzie Kjeldgaard for receiving a Summer Research Grant from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!


May 2011 - Congratulations to Jenny McCarty for receiving the Shubert Award from the Biology Department at DU!


April 2011 - Congratulations to Kylee Grenis for receiving a DU Graduate Studies Doctoral Fellowship for Inclusive Engagement!


April 2011 - Congratulations to Jenny McCarty for receiving a Pustmueller Summer Fellowship!


March 2011 - Congratulations to Andrew Haertzen for receiving a Partners in Scholarship (PinS) grant from the DU Undergraduate Research Center!