Dr. John Ruberson

John Ruberson
Professor and Department Head
Biological Control, Integrated Pest Management, Sustainable Agriculture, Ecology

Our treasure lies in the beehive of our knowledge. We are perpetually on the way thither, being by nature winged insects and honey gatherers of the mind. - Friedrich Nietzsche ("The Birth of Tragedy and the Genealogy of Morals")

Faculty Profile


Dr. John Ruberson moved to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2019.  He teaches graduate and undergraduate classes. He and Dr. Tom Weissling will be co-teaching ENTO 105 Natural History of Arthropods Associated with Plants starting in fall 2021. Prior to coming to UNL, he was the department head of Entomology at Kansas State University from 2012 to 2018. And before his service at K-State, he was a member of the faculty in the Department of Entomology at the University of Georgia starting in 1994. 


  • B.S. in Biology Teaching, Brigham Young University, 1982
  • M.S. in Zoology, Brigham Young University, 1984
  • Ph.D. in Entomology, minor in Plant Pathology, Cornell University, 1989

Professional Responsibilities and Activities

  • My current responsibilities are focused on administering the department as department head. My research interests are in the areas of (1) biological control of arthropod pests, (2) interactions of arthropod natural enemies with crop production practices, (3) integrated pest management, (4) sustainable agriculture, and (5) ecology of insect predators and parasitoids.
  • Courses Taught:
    - Insects and People
    - Biological Control
    - General Entomology
    - Principles of Integrated Pest Management


  • Nechols, JR, AR Hough, DC Margolies, JR Ruberson, BP McCornack, BK Sandercock, L Murray. 2020. Effect of temperature on host plant resistance to arthropod pests. Environmental Entomology 49: 537-545. https://doi.org/10.1093/ee/nvaa033
  • Athey, K, JR Ruberson, D Olson, JD Harwood. 2019. Predation on stink bugs (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) in cotton and soybean agroecosystems. PLoS ONE 14(3):e0214325. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0214325
  • Ruberson, JR. 2019. Will Whitcomb: Entomologist and old-school naturalist. Florida Entomologist 102(3): 1-5.
  • Olson, DM, KR Prescott, AR Zeilinger, S Hou, AW Coffin, CM Smith, JR Ruberson, DA Andow. 2018. Landscape effects on reproduction of Euschistus servus (Hemptera: Pentatomidae), a mobile, polyphagous, multivoltine arthropod herbivore. Environmental Entomology 47: 660-668.
  • Olson, DM, AR Zeilinger, KR Prescott, AW Coffin, JR Ruberson, DA Andow. 2018. Landscape effects on Solenopsis invicta (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and Geocoris spp. (Hemiptera: Geocoridae), two important omnivorous arthropod taxa in field crops. Environmental Entomology 47: 1057-1063.
  • Khan, M, JR Ruberson. 2017. Lethal effects of selected novel pesticides on immature stages of Trichogramma pretiosum (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae). Pest Management Science 73: 2465-2472.
  • Nechols, JR, JJ Obrycki, JR Ruberson, LR Milbrath, GS Albuquerque, Y-F Chang, J Lopez-Arroyo. 2017. Integrating science with practice: A tribute to the life and work of Maurice J. Tauber. American Entomologist 63: 251-258.
  • Wickings, KW, JR Ruberson. 2016. Impact of the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta, on egg predation at the soil surface and in cotton foliage. Annals of Applied Biology 169(3): 319-328.
  • Olson, DM, JR Ruberson, DA Andow. 2016. Relative longevity of adult Nezara viridula (Hemiptera: Penatatomidae) in field cages of cotton, peanut and soybean. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata 159: 30-36.
  • Cottrell, TE, BW Wood, CM Paulsen, X Ni, JR Ruberson. 2015. Distribution of the Black pecan aphid on pecan leaf surfaces: an overview. ISHS Acta Horticulturae 1070: 159-165.
  • Khan, M, H Khan, JR Ruberson. 2015. Lethal and behavioral effects of selected novel pesticides on adults of Trichogramma pretiosum (Trichogrammatidae: Hymenoptera). Pest Management Science 71: 1640-1648.
  • Chen, Y, JR Ruberson, X Ni. 2014. Influence of host plant nitrogen fertilization on haemolymph protein profiles of herbivore Spodoptera exigua and development of its endoparasitoid Cotesia marginiventris. Biological Control 70: 9-16.
  • Rodrigues, ARS, JR Ruberson, JB Torres, HAA Siqueira, JG Scott. 2013. Pyrethroid resistance and its inheritance in a field population of Hippodamia convergens (Guérin-Méneville) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology 105: 135-143.
  • Hagenbucher, S, FL Wackers, FE Wettstein, DM Olson, JR Ruberson, J Romeis. 2013. Pest tradeoffs in technology: Reduced damage by caterpillars in Bt cotton benefits aphids. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Biological Sciences 280:
  • Gardner, WA, HB Peeler, J LaForest, PM Roberts, AN Sparks, Jr., JK Greene, D Reisig, DR Suiter, JS Bacheler, K Kidd, CH Ray, XP Hu, RC Kemerait, EA Scocco, JE Eger, JR Ruberson, EJ Sikora, DA Herbert, C Campana, S Halbert, Sd Stewart, GD Buntin, MD Toews, CT Bargeron. 2013. Confirmed distribution and occurrence of Megacopta cribraria (F.) (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Plataspidae) in the southeastern United States. Journal of Entomological Science 48(2): 118-127.
  • Hagenbucher, S, DM Olson, JR Ruberson, FL Wäckers, J Romeis. 2013. Resistance mechanisms against arthropod herbivores in cotton and their interactions with natural enemies. Critical Reviews in Plant Sciences 32: 458-482.
  • Ruberson, JR, K Takasu, GD Buntin, JE Eger, WA Gardner, JK Greene, TM Jenkins, WA Jones, DM Olson, PM Roberts, DR Suiter, and MD Toews. 2013. From Asian curiosity to eruptive American pest: Megacopta cribraria (Hemiptera: Plataspidae) and prospects for its biological control. Applied Entomology and Zoology 48: 3-13.

Awards and Honors

  • 2020       Elected representative to the Entomological Society of America (ESA) governing board from the North Central Branch of the ESA
  • 2021       University of Nebraska Family & Friends Recognition Award
  • 2018       Pioneer Lecture Award for Excellence in Biological Control, Florida Entomological Society
  • 2018       National IPM Award of Excellence by the 9th International IPM Symposium Awards Committee for the "Megacopta (Kudzu Bug) Working Group" (team member)
  • 2017        Most cited paper for 2013, Journal of Applied Entomology and Zoology
  • 2017        Outstanding Faculty Award from Popenoe Entomology Graduate Student Club (Kansas State University)
  • 2014        Outstanding Faculty Award from Popenoe Entomology Graduate Student Club (Kansas State University)
  • 2011        Excellence in Teaching Award, Tifton Campus of the University of Georgia
  • 2010       ESA Award for Excellence in Integrated Pest Management, Southeastern Branch Entomological Society of America
  • 2003       Distinguished Research Award, Tifton Chapter of Sigma Xi
  • 1997        Outstanding Faculty Award (H.O. Lund Entomology Club, Dept. of Entomology, Univ. of Georgia)


103A Entomology Hall
Lincoln, NE 68583-0816


100% Administration

Professional Society Memberships

  • Entomological Society of America (ESA)
  • Gamma Sigma Delta
  • Kansas Entomological Society
  • Georgia Entomological Society