Entomology & Microbiology

Dr. Kier D. Klepzig

Prospective Students

Thanks for your interest in the Entomology Lab at the Jones Center at Ichauway. The longleaf pine ecosystem – and especially the property we call Ichauway – is incredibly rich with species of all kinds of organisms. Check out the webpages for the other labs at the Center to learn more about the diversity of plants, reptiles, amphibians, fish, mussels, and wildlife. This is, undoubtedly, also true for insects, but we know so little about how many insects we have here, less about which species, and even less about their functional roles. My lab addresses these issues through looking at decomposers, tree pests and diseases, pollinators, and so much more. If you have questions about working or studying in my lab, or about our work, we would love to hear from you, just contact me or Tom Sheehan.

The ecosystems of Ichauway

The Jones Center at Ichauway is a non-profit ecological research center located in Baker County, GA. The Ichauway property covers 29,000 acres of mostly longleaf pine savanna, but also mixed hardwood forests, riparian hardwood forests, wetlands, and agricultural fields. Fifteen miles of the Ichauwaynochaway Creek runs through the property and 13 miles of the Flint River form the eastern boundary. Longleaf pine used to cover over 90 million acres in North America, but as of 2015, only approximately 4.3 million acres (<5%) remain. The southeastern U.S. in general, and Ichauway specifically, boasts a tremendous amount of diversity. Over 1,100 vascular plant species and over 370 vertebrate species have been documented on Ichauway.


The majority of our on-site lodging is newly constructed (pictured below). Lodging assignments vary depending on availability. All lodging comes equipped with basic kitchen supplies and are fully furnished, including all major appliances. Everyone has a private bedroom and bathroom. The common spaces, such as kitchen, living area, and laundry spaces, are shared. You supply your own queen-size bed linens, bath towels, toiletries, and cleaning supplies.

Proximity of amenities

Internet is provided in all lodging for students. Cell service can be somewhat patchy depending on your service provider and where you are on site. Verizon is the most reliable. Basic groceries and household items are available within a 20-minute drive, and major grocery stores are located within a 35-minute drive.


A kaleidoscopic cast of graduate students and research assistants adds sparkle to the Jones Center. The diverse research specialties at the center mean that birding, botanizing, herping, and other informal natural history excursions happen often.

Common social and recreational activities include soccer, river swimming, kayaking, roller skating and roller blading, volleyball, and basketball. Outstanding natural and cultural features within a 2.5-hour drive include Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, Wakulla Springs, Apalachicola National Forest, the Suwannee River, Pine Mountain, Lake Seminole, and Kolomoki Mounds.