Paul K. Abram, Ph.D.

Image Paul K. Abram
Research Scientist, Biological Control of Insect Pests

My research program is focused on the biology, behaviour, and ecology of beneficial insects (insect parasitoids) that help manage insect crop pests.  The main goals of my research are to develop, test, and implement theory and methods for: (i) measuring the biological control impact of parasitoids on invasive crop pests; and (ii) forecasting the potential for non-target ecological effects of introduced parasitoids on native Canadian fauna.

I also have a broad range of other research interests that focus on bridging the gap between fundamental ecological research and applied biological pest control.   These include projects on insect symbionts and viruses, different aspects of global change (artificial lighting, anthropogenic noise, temperature increases), and the ecological importance of within-species (intraspecific) trait variation in biological control agents. 

Current research and/or projects

  • Biological control of invasive agricultural insect pests (spotted wing Drosophila, brown marmorated stink bug) with parasitoid wasps.
  • Ecological risks and benefits of accidentally introduced parasitoid wasps that attack invasive crop pests.
  • Ecological effects of disruptive vibrations and daylength extensions with artificial lighting on pest/natural enemy associations in vegetable greenhouses.
  • Interactions between viruses and microbial symbionts of the invasive spotted wing Drosophila.
  • Parasitoid wasps attacking pest and non-pest leafhoppers in vineyard and adjacent natural habitats.
  • Tolerance and resistance of newly developed blueberry and raspberry selections to various insect pests.

Research and/or project statements

Additional key publications:

For full publication list, see Google Scholar page.

P.K. Abram, A.E. McPherson, R. Kula, T. Hueppelsheuser, J. Thiessen, S.J. Perlman, C.I. Curtis, J.L. Fraser, J. Tam, J. Carillo, M. Gates, S. Scheffer, M. Lewis, and M. Buffington (2020). New records of LeptopilinaGanaspis, and Asobara species associated with Drosophila suzukii in North America, including detections of L. japonica and G. brasiliensisJournal of Hymenoptera Research 78:1-17. doi: 10.3897/jhr.78.55026

P.K. Abram, R.M. Labbe, and P.G. Mason (2020). Ranking the host range of biological control agents with quantitative metrics of taxonomic specificity. Biological Control 152: 104427. doi: 10.1016/j.biocontrol.2020.104427

P.K. Abram, N. Mills, and E. Beers (2020). Classical biological control of invasive stink bugs with egg parasitoids: what does success look like? Pest Management Science 76: 1980-1992. doi: 10.1002/ps.5813  

P.K. Abram, E.J. Talamas, S. Acheampong, P.G. Mason, and T.D. Gariepy (2019). First detection of the samurai wasp, Trissolcus japonicus (Ashmead) (Hymenoptera: Scelionidae) in Canada. Journal of Hymenoptera Research 68: 29–36. doi:10.3897/jhr.68.32203 

P.K. Abram, J. Brodeur, A. Urbaneja, and A. Tena (2019). Non-reproductive effects of insect parasitoids on their hosts. Annual Review of Entomology 64:259-276. doi: 10.1146/annurev-ento-011118-111753 

P.K. Abram and C.E. Moffat (2018). Rethinking biological control programs as planned invasions. Current Opinion in Insect Science 27:9-15. doi: 10.1016/j.cois.2018.01.011  

P.K. Abram, K.A. Hoelmer, A. L. et al. [+47 Authors] (2017). Indigenous arthropod natural enemies of the brown marmorated stink bug in North America and Europe. Journal of Pest Science 90:1009-1020. doi: 10.1007/s10340-017-0891-7   

P.K. Abram, G. Boivin, J. Moiroux, and J. Brodeur (2017). Behavioural effects of temperature on ectothermic animals: unifying thermal physiology and behavioural plasticity. Biological Reviews 92: 1859-1876. 

Education and awards

  • Ph.D., Biological Sciences, Université de Montréal (2016)
  • MSc, Biology, Carleton University (2012)
  • BSc (Honours), Biology, Queen's University (2009)

Key publications

  1. Franklin, M.T., Wong, W., Abram, P., and J. Carrillo. 2021. Introducing new research on the strawberry blossom weevil. BC Berry Research Review. Virtual Meeting. Oct 21-22, 2021.

    2021 - View publication details

  2. L. Harach, M.T. Franklin, P.K. Abram (2021). Flying Low? Ganaspis brasiliensis and Leptopilina japonica canopy height preferences for spotted wing drosophila in raspberry crop. Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of British Columbia, October 19-21, 2021 (Virtual oral presentation).

    2021 - View publication details

  3. Franklin, M.T., Abram, P., Uriel, Y., and J. Thiessen. Trends in pest populations on raspberry and blueberry breeding selections. BC Berry Research Review. Virtual Meeting. Oct 21-22, 2021.

    2021 - View publication details

  4. C. Capko, J. Thiessen, P.K. Abram (2021). Is clutch size uniformity in stinkbugs influenced by patterns of resource availability? Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of British Columbia, October 19-21, 2021 (Virtual oral presentation).

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  5. Franklin, M.T., Wong, W., Sherwood, J., Carrillo, J., Abram, P.K., Uriel, Y., Gibson, G., Bouchard, P., Hueppelsheuser, T., and T. Haye. 2021. Strawberry blossom weevil: a new pest of small fruit in British Columbia. Western Forum on Pest Management Research Report.

    2021 - View publication details

  6. Abram, P.K., Franklin, M.T., Hueppelsheuser, T., Acheampong, S., Moffat, C., Girod, P., Wong. W., and J. Carrillo. 2021. Biological control of spotted wing Drosophila by adventive larval parasitoids in British Columbia. Western Forum on Pest Management Research Report.

    2021 - View publication details

  7. J. Fraser, P.K. Abram, M. Dorais (2021). Modifying parasitoid behaviour with artificial light to improve biological control of aphids. Canadian Greenhouse Conference, October 6-7 2021 (Virtual oral presentation).

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  8. Franklin, M.T., Wong, W., Abram. P., and J. Carrillo. 2021 Establishment of strawberry blossom weevil, Anthonomus rubi in British Columbia: a new threat to berry production. Invasive Species Research Conference. Virtual Meeting. Oct 6-7, 2021.

    2021 - View publication details

  9. Franklin, M.T., Abram, P.K., and T. Hueppelsheuser. 2021. A new invasive weevil that is turning berry buds into duds in British Columbia. Entomological Society of Canada Blog Post.

    2021 - View publication details

  10. Franklin, M.T., Abram, P.K., and T. Hueppelsheuser. 2021. Strawberry blossom weevil: a new pest of strawberries and raspberries. Proceedings of the Lower Mainland Horticulture Improvement Association. Pg. 30-32

    2021 - View publication details

  11. Uriel, Y., Abram, P.K., Gries, G. (2021). Parasitoid pressure does not elicit defensive polyphenism in the green peach aphid. Ecological Entomology, [online] 46(3), 668-676. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/een.13014

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  12. Franklin, M.T., Abram, P., and T. Hueppelsheuser. 2021. Strawberry blossom weevil, Anthonomus rubi is established in British Columbia. North American Invasive Species Forum. Virtual Meeting. May 18-20, 2021.

    2021 - View publication details

  13. Wong, W.H.L., Walz, M.A., Oscienny, A.B., Sherwood, J.L., Abram, P.K. (2021). An Effective Cold Storage Method for Stockpiling Halyomorpha halys (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) Eggs for Field Surveys and Laboratory Rearing of Trissolcus japonicus (Hymenoptera: Scelionidae). Journal of Economic Entomology, [online] 114(2), 571-581. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jee/toaa307

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  14. MacDonald JL, Moffat C, Abram P. 2021. "On Demand: Spotted Wing Drosophila." Canadian Fruit & Vegetable Summit. March 10, 2021. https://www.fruitandveggie.com/ve-agenda/spotted-wing-drosophila-jesse-macdonald-aafc/

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  15. Franklin, M.T., Abram, P.K., and J. Thiessen. 2021. Determining potential resistance and susceptibility of raspberry and blueberry breeding selections to key arthropod pests. BC Berries Research Review, Virtual Meeting (oral presentation). Feb 26, 2021.

    2021 - View publication details

  16. Moffat, C.E., Abram, P.K., and Ensign, D. (in press) An evolutionary ecology synthesis for biological control. In: Biological control: a global endeavor (P.G. Mason, ed.). CSIRO press.

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  17. Franklin, M.T. Abram, P.K. and T. Hueppelsheuser. 2021. Strawberry blossom weevil: a new pest of strawberries and raspberries. Lower Mainland Horticultural Improvement Association Horticultural Growers’ Short Course Virtual Meeting, Jan 28-30, 2021.

    2021 - View publication details

  18. Franklin, M.T., Abram, P.K., and T. Hueppelsheuser. 2021. Establishment of strawberry blossom weevil, Anthonomus rubi in Canada: a new pest of berries. Pest Management Centre Insect Pests of Berries Strategy Virtual Wrap-up Meeting. Jan 26, 2021.

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  19. P.K. Abram, T. Hueppelsheuser, M.F. Franklin, C.E. Moffat, M. Robertson, T. Nelson, S. Acheampong, J. Carrillo, M. Buffington (2021). Two specialized natural enemies of spotted wing Drosophila are now present in British Columbia. Pest Management Centre Insect Pests of Berries Strategy Virtual Wrap-up Meeting, January 26, 2021.

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  20. MacDonald J, Cooey L, Telford G, Abrams P, Alton G, Dudzic J, Ellis T, Girod P, Hueppelsheuser T, McFarlene J, Moffat C, Pogoda M, Thistlewood H. 2021. "Spotted Wing Drosophila: A Regional Research Users’ Meeting." Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Summerland, BC. 13 pp.

    2021 - View publication details

Research facility

6947 Highway 7
PO Box 1000
Agassiz, BC V0M 1A2
Canada

Affiliations

  • Adjunct Professor, University of British Columbia, Faculty of Land and Food Systems
  • Adjunct Professor, University of Victoria, Department of Biology
  • Adjunct Professor, Université Laval, Département de Phytologie

Language

English
French