I have been fond of insects since a very young age. I still remember how excited I was when I saw a Sesiidae moth carcass on the floor of my kindergarten’s activity hall. Having a Zanthoxylum tree in my front yard also made annual rearing of Papilio xuthus a childhood tradition that perhaps shaped my passion for the swallowtail (Papilionidae) family. I spent most of my childhood and teenage years moving between Beijing, New York City, Singapore, and Oʻahu. Although I have had the chance to see a great range of biomes living in different parts of the world, I always find myself the most drawn to alpine fauna. Specifically, Parnassius has been and always will be my favorite genus among all insects. Aside from their beauty, these alpine-specialist butterflies have evolved amazing life history traits that allow them to dominate some of the world’s most hostile environments. Aside from my obsession with Lepidopterans, I also love the many eusocial Hymenopteran and Blattodean taxa. When I am not doing insect-related stuff (I hike mostly for bugs), I enjoy drawing and bodybuilding. Having earned my B.S. in Entomology at UC Davis in 2023, I am beyond excited to continue my journey in insect biology as a Ph.D. student.
Most alpine fauna and flora must accurately utilize the very limited period each year when the environmental conditions are suitable for their growth and reproduction. Meaning that many alpine organisms’ activities tend to be highly synchronized. Together with alpine specialists’ facultative preference or obligatory requirement for lower environmental temperatures during at least some of their life stages, they are among the most threatened groups facing climate change. I am interested in exploring the impacts of climate change on alpine insect populations and alpine plant-insect interactions, focusing on rising aerial temperature’s effects on microclimatic conditions and subsequent consequences in insect phenological patterns and their behavioral and morphological traits. I intend to use Parnassius species as model organisms due to their high sensitivity to microclimatic conditions, especially during immature stages, and poor gene flow between spatially close populations.
Entomology Graduate Group
Department of Entomology and Nematology
Briggs Hall 380K
University of California, Davis
Davis, CA 95616 USA
Fellowships and Awards
2023 National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship (GRFP)