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Kathrin Stanger-Hall:  PI. Kathrin started at UGA in the Summer of 2006. Her research centers on the evolution of communication systems. She studies signal evolution in fireflies (Coleoptera: Lampyridae) including signal production, signal perception and environmental influences. 


Sarah Sander Lower: Graduate Student (with Dave Hall). Sarah started as an Interdisciplinary Life Sciences graduate student before joining the Genetics Department.  She defended her thesis in summer 2015, and is now a postdoc at Cornell University. She continues to be a collaborator.

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Jim Lloyd and Dorothy Lloyd: Jim is an honorary lab member and provides systematic expertise for our projects. Jim has been a mentor for all things firefly since we started working on fireflies in 1998, and Dorothy makes sure that he will be able to follow his passion for at least another 20 years. 


Caitlin Hobbs: Undergraduate Technician. Caitlin is in charge of the KSH Firefly collection at UGA and keeps us organized.


Current Independent Research Students


Daniel Dolinski: Undergraduate Student. Daniel joined the lab in Spring 2018 and is working on gene expression in P. australis fireflies.


Allison McCabe: Undergraduate Student. Allison joined the lab in Fall 2017 and is working on the sequencing genes for a phylogeny of European fireflies.


Brandon Davis: Undergraduate Student. Brandon joined the lab in Spring 2017 and is working on the biogeography of Photinus fireflies in North America.


Lab Alumni: Rotation Students

I. University of Georgia (since 2006)

Aaron DeLeo: Aaron rotated in the lab as a 1st year Interdisciplinary Life Sciences graduate student in Fall 2016.

Suzanne Allison: Suzanne rotated in the lab as a 1st year Interdisciplinary Life Sciences graduate student in Fall 2016.

Sergio Minchey: Sergio rotated in the lab as a 1st year Interdisciplinary Life Sciences graduate student in Fall 2015.


Lab Alumni: Independent Research Projects


Pearl Shah: Undergraduate Student. Pearl joined the lab in Fall 2016 and was working on the biogeography of Pyractomena fireflies in North America. She graduated in Fall 2017.


Garrett Volino: Undergraduate Student. Garrett joined the lab in Fall 2016. He conducted ambient light measurements in different habitats and is contributing to the biogeography project. In Spring 2017 Garrett started working on the phylogeny of Pyractomena fireflies. He graduated in Spring 2018.

Gemma Rappaport (no picture): Undergraduate Student. Gemma joined the lab in Spring 2017 and is working on the biogeography of Photinus fireflies in North America.


Talia Williams: Clarke Central High School Student and Young Dawg Researcher. Talia worked on a firefly research project during Fall 2015.


Ayesha Khan: Clarke Central High School student and Young Dawg Researcher. Ayesha worked on the molecular identification of international firefly specimen during Summer 2014.


Jenna Pallansch: Undergraduate student (with Dave Hall). Jenna worked on several Independent Research projects (2012-2014), including the light emission spectra of fireflies (published in 2016). She is now attending Medical School.


Katharine Korunes: Undergraduate researcher (with Dave Hall). Among other projects Katharine worked with Sarah on genome size in fireflies. She presented a poster at Evolution 2014. She is now a graduate student at Duke University.


Seth Garner: Undergraduate researcher (with Dave Hall): Seth joined the Hall ab in the Summer 2011. He worked on a firefly project.


Andrew Hopkins: Undergraduate researcher (with Dave Hall). Andrew was working on an Independent Research project with fireflies (Spring-Fall 2011). He is attending graduate school.


Lauri Lindbergh: Undergraduate researcher. Lauri worked in the lab on various firefly projects from Fall 2009 through Summer 2010. After graduating, Lauri worked at the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta and is now at Emory Medical school. 


Kris Richards (no picture): Undergraduate researcher. Kris worked in the lab at the end of her Junior year (Summer 2008).  She worked on firefly communities throughout Georgia.  She planned to go to graduate school in marine biology after graduation.


Kora: Former technician.  Now a technician at Emory University.


Ben Judd: Undergraduate researcher (with Dave Hall). Ben worked in the lab from Spring 2007 through Spring 2008.  Ben worked primarily on the  molecular evolution project in fireflies.  Ben began medical school at the Medical College of Georgia in the Fall of 2008. 


Will Fisher: Undergraduate researcher. Will worked in the lab during Summer 2007.  His primary project involved characterizing firefly communities in and around Athens.  


II. University of Texas at Austin (1997-2005): Undergraduate Researchers

  • Erine Budi
  • Rhiannon Dodge
  • Ozhan Jafri
  • Joyce Kao
  • Wen-Ya Ko
  • Jeanne Lee
  • Dawn Lin
  • Meredith McClure
  • Janelle Ortiz
  • Laura Reinhard
  • Gurpreet Singh
  • Karen Piotrowski
  • Madhu Ragupathi
  • Frieda Wiley
  • Samar Yusuf
  • Simeen Zubairy


III. Wake Forest University (1995-1997): Undergraduate and Graduate Researchers

Derek A Zelmer (graduate student collaborator), now Associate Professor at University of South Carolina, Aiken, SC. 

Stephanie Burns (undergraduate researcher in Behavioral Ecology class).

Christine Bergren (undergraduate researcher in Behavioral Ecology class).



Jim Lloyd, University of Florida

David Hillis, University of Texas at Austin

Dave Hall, University of Georgia

Sarah Sander Lower, Cornell University

Alan Lemmon, Florida State University

Emily Moriarty-Lemmon, Florida State University

Jim Leebens-Mack, University of Georgia

Parastoo Azadi, University of Georgia

Lynn Faust, Emory River Land Company

Luiz Silveira, University of Rio de Janeiro

Sara Lewis, Tufts University

Adam South, Harvard University

Fred Nijhout, Duke University

Fred Vencl, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute

Christopher Cratsley, Fitchburgh State College

Seth Bybee, Brigham Young University

Gavin Martin, Brigham Young University

Mark Branham, University of Florida


Our research would not have been possible without our collaborators and funding agencies:

I. Evolution and Behavior





UGA Research Foundation


UGA Grants on Edge

UGA Study in a Second Discipline