Lawrence E. Hurd Herwick Professor of Biology
Present Positions: John T. Herwick Professor of Biology, Biology Department and Environmental Studies Program, Washington and Lee. Editor-in-Chief, Annals of the Entomological Society of America
B.A., Hiram College, 1969
Ph.D., Syracuse University, 1972
- Tropical biodiversity: What are the biotic and abiotic environmental factors important to the evolution and maintenance of biodiversity in the most species-rich and endangered ecosystem in the world? At present I am focusing on fish species diversity in floodplain lakes in the Amazon River Basin, in collaboration with faculty and graduate students at the Federal University of the Amazon (UFAM). The region has a pronounced hydrologic cycle, with forests along rivers that are submerged much of the year. Life cycles of fish species are timed to correspond to flooding and receding waters in these habitats. Floodplain lakes created during low water periods create a potential for metacommunity dynamics and adaptive radiation.
Biodiversity and productivity: The role of predators. Do generalist predators exert top-down control on diversity and productivity of lower trophic levels? Populations of a model predator, the praying mantis, are manipulated in controlled experiments to determine the influence of predation on other predators, on herbivorous species, and on plants in old-field ecosystems. These studies produced the first experimental evidence of top-down predator influence (trophic cascade) on plant productivity in a highly diverse natural ecosystem.
Population dynamics of arthropod predators. What regulates predator populations? Generalist predators may be regulated by their prey; however, prey may include each other. Laboratory and field tests of competition, interspecific predation, and cannibalism among different species of praying mantids and cursorial spiders that co-occur in nature have revealed some perplexing relationships, e.g., the same conditions that reduce competition promote interspecific predation and cannibalism among members of the generalist predator guild. These interactions among predator species can make predictions of their impact on the rest of an ecosystem uncertain: some prey species are reduced by direct predation, while others increase in abundance when predators interfere with each other. Interaction strengths also vary widely among prey species and over time. The resultant uncertainty has important implications for using predators as agents of pest control.
Fundamentals of Biology (BIOL111)
Field Entomology (BIOL231)
Biological Diversity (BIOL246)
Ecology Seminar (BIOL295)
Environmental Biology (BIOL101)
Conservation Ecology (BIOL398)
Ecology of Place (ENV250)
Hurd, L. E., M. W. Mellinger, L. L. Wolf, and S. J. McNaughton. 1971. Stability and diversity at three trophic levels in terrestrial successional ecosystems. Science 173:1134-1136.
Hurd, L. E., M. V. Mellinger, L. L. Wolf, S. J. McNaughton, and B. Holt. 1972. Age, location and stability of ecosystems. Science 175:917-919.
Hurd, L. E., M. V. Mellinger, L. L. Wolf, S. J. McNaughton, and R. Harger. 1972. Relative consumer species diversity with respect to producer diversity and net productivity. Science 176:544-545.
Pimentel, D., L. Hurd, A. Bellotti, M. Forster, I. Oka, O. Sholes, and R. Whitman. 1973. Food production and the energy crisis. Science 182:443-449.
Pimentel, D., L. Hurd, A. Bellotti, M. Forster, I. Oka, O. Sholes, and R. Whitman. 1973. Corn, food, and the energy crisis. Environmental Biology 73:1-36.
Hurd, L. E., and L. L. Wolf. 1974. Stability in relation to nutrient enrichment in arthropod consumers of old field successional ecosystems. Ecological Monographs 44:465-482.
Hurd, L. E., and R. M. Eisenberg. 1975. Divergent selection for geotactic response and evolution of reproductive isolation in sympatric and allopatric populations of houseflies. American Naturalist 109:353-358.
Cornell, H. V., L. E. Hurd, and V. A. Lotrich. 1976. A measure of response to perturbation used to assess structural change in some polluted and unpolluted stream fish communities. Oecologia 23:335-342.
Eisenberg, R. M., and L. E. Hurd. 1977. An ecological study of the emergence characteristics for egg cases of the Chinese mantis (Tenodera aridifolia sinensis Saussure). American Midland Naturalist 97:478-482.
Hurd, L. E., R. M. Eisenberg, and J. O. Washburn. 1978. Effects of experimentally manipulated density on field populations of the Chinese Mantis (Tenodera aridifolia sinensis Saussure). American Midland Naturalist 99:58-64.
Hurd, L. E., G. W. Smedes, and T. A. Dean. 1979. An ecological study of a natural population of diamondback terrapins (Malaclemys terrapin terrapin) in a Delaware salt marsh. Estuaries 2:28-33.
Curtis, L. A., and L. E. Hurd. 1979. On the broad nutritional requirements of the mud snail, Ilyanassa obsoleta, and its polytrophic role in the food web. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology Ecology 41:289-297.
Dean, T. A., and L. E. Hurd. 1980. Development of a marine fouling community: the influence of early colonists on later arrivals. Oecologia 46:295-301.
Curtis, L. A., and L. E. Hurd. 1980. The effect of salinity on crystalline style occurrence in the estuarine snail, Ilyanassa obsoleta Say (Mollusca: Neogastropoda), and its potential significance with respect to local distribution. Veliger 23:155-158.
Curtis, L. A., and L. E. Hurd. 1981. Nutrient procurement strategy of a deposit-feeding estuarine neogastropod, Ilyanassa obsoleta. Estuarine Coastal Shelf Science 13:277-285.
Curtis, L. A., and L. E. Hurd. 1981. Crystalline style cycling in Ilyanassa obsoleta (Say): Further studies. Veliger 24:91-96.
Eisenberg, R. M., L. E. Hurd, and J. A. Bartley. 1981. Ecological consequences of food limitation for adult mantids (Tenodera aridifolia sinensis Saussure). American Midland Naturalist 106:209-218.
Smedes, G. W., and L. E. Hurd. 1981. An empirical test of community stability: resistance of a fouling community to a biological patch-forming disturbance. Ecology 62:1561-1572.
Curtis, L. A., and L. E. Hurd. 1983. Age, sex, and parasites: spatial heterogeneity in a sandflat population of Ilyanassa obsoleta. Ecology 64:819-828.
Rathet, I. H., and L. E. Hurd. 1983. Ecological relationships of three co-occurring mantids, Tenodera sinensis (Saussure), T. angustipennis (Saussure), and Mantis religiosa (Linnaeus). American Midland Naturalist 110:240-248.
Hurd, L. E., and R. M. Eisenberg. 1984. Experimental density manipulations of the predator Tenodera sinensis (Orthoptera: Mantidae) in an old-field community. I. Mortality, development and dispersal of juvenile mantids. Journal of Animal Ecology 53:269-281.
Hurd, L. E., and R. M. Eisenberg. 1984. Experimental density manipulations of the predator Tenodera sinensis (Orthoptera: Mantidae) in an old-field community. II. The influence of mantids on arthropod community structure. Journal of Animal Ecology 53:955-967.
Hurd, L. E. 1985. Ecological considerations of mantids as biocontrol agents. Antenna (London) 9:19-22.
Hurd, L. E. 1985. On the importance of carrion to reproduction in an omnivorous estuarine neogastropod, Ilyanassa obsoleta (Say). Oecologia 65:513-515.
Hurd, L. E. and R. H. Rathet. 1986. Functional response and success in juvenile mantids. Ecology 67:163-167.
Hurd, L. E. 1988. Consequences of divergent egg phenology to predation and coexistence in two sympatric, congeneric mantids (Orthoptera: Mantidae). Oecologia 76:547-550.
Hurd, L. E. and R. M. Eisenberg. 1989. A mid-summer comparison of sizes and growth rates of three sympatric mantids (Mantodea: Mantidae) in two old-field habitats. Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 91:51-54.
Hurd, L. E. and R. M. Eisenberg. 1989. The temporal distribution of hatching times in three sympatric mantids (Mantodea: Mantidae) with implications for niche separation and coexistence. Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 91:55-58.
Hurd, L. E. 1989. The importance of late season flowers to the fitness of an insect predator, Tenodera sinensis Saussure (Orthoptera: Mantidae) in an old field community. Entomologist (London) 108:223-228.
Eisenberg, R. M., L. E. Hurd, and R. B. Ketcham. 1989. The cellular slime mold guild and its bacterial prey: growth rate variation at the inter- and intraspecific levels. Oecologia 79:458- 462.
Hurd, L. E., P. E. Marinari, and R. M. Eisenberg. 1989. The influence of temperature and photoperiod on early developmental rate of Tenodera sinensis Saussure (Mantodea: Mantidae). Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 91:529-533.
Eisenberg, R. M., and L. E. Hurd. 1990. Egg dispersion in two species of praying mantids (Mantodea: Mantidae). Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 92:808-810.
Hurd, L. E., and R. M. Eisenberg. 1990. Experimentally synchronized phenology and interspecific competition in mantids. American Midland Naturalist 124:390-394.
Hurd, L. E., and R. M. Eisenberg. 1990. Arthropod community responses to manipulation of a bitrophic predator guild. Ecology 76:2107-2114.
Hurd, L. E. 1991. Growth efficiency in juvenile mantids: absence of selection for optimization in a food-limited environment. Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 93:748-750.
Fagan, W. F., and L. E. Hurd. 1991. Direct and indirect effects of generalist predators on a terrestrial arthropod community. American Midland Naturalist 126:380-384.
Fagan, W. F., and L. E. Hurd. 1991. Late season food level, cannibalism, and oviposition in adult mantids: sources of variability in a field experiment. Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 93:956-961.
Eisenberg, R. M., E. Pilchik, L. L. Bedwell, S. Winram, M. Rodgers, S. McFalls, C. T. Kessler, M. Gross, A. Walter, E. Wadman, K. M. Dougherty, W. Smith, C. L. Berman, and L. E. Hurd. 1992. Comparative egg ecology of two sympatric mantids (Mantodea:Mantidae). Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 94:366-370.
Eisenberg, R. M., L. E. Hurd, W. F. Fagan, K. J. Tilmon, W. E. Snyder, K. S. Vandersall, S. G. Datz, and J. D. Welch. 1992. Adult dispersal in Tenodera aridifolia sinensis. Environmental Entomology 21:350-353.
Hurd, L. E. and W. F. Fagan. 1992. Cursorial spiders and succession: age or habitat structure? Oecologia 92:215-221.
Eisenberg, R. M. and L. E. Hurd. 1993. Relative egg success and implications for distribution of three sympatric mantids (Mantodea: Mantidae). Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 95:271-277.
Karlson, R. H. and L. E. Hurd. 1993. Disturbance, coral reef communities, and changing ecological paradigms. Coral Reefs 12:117-125.
Hurd, L. E., R. M. Eisenberg, W. F. Fagan, K. S. Vandersall, K. J. Tilmon, W. E. Snyder, S. G. Datz, and J. D. Welch. 1994. Cannibalism reverses male-biased sex ratio in adult mantids: female strategy against food limitation? Oikos 69:193-198.
Fagan, W. F. and L. E. Hurd. 1994. High-density hatching of a generalist arthropod predator: population consequences and community impact. Ecology 75:2022-2032.
Moran, M. D., and L. E. Hurd. 1994. Environmentally determined male-biased sex ratio in a praying mantid. American Midland Naturalist 132:205-208.
Moran, M. D., and L. E. Hurd. 1994. Short-term responses to elevated predator densities: noncompetitive intraguild interactions and behavior. Oecologia 98:269-273.
Hurd, L. E., Eisenberg, M. D. Moran, T. P. Rooney, W. J. Gangloff, and V. M. Case. 1995. Time, temperature and food as determinants of population persistence in a temperate univoltine insect. Environmental Entomology 24:348-353.
Snyder, W. E. and L. E. Hurd. 1995. Egg-hatch phenology and intraguild predation between two mantid species. Oecologia 104:496-500.
Moran, M. D., T. P. Rooney, and L. E. Hurd. 1996. Top-down cascade from a bitrophic predator in an old-field community. Ecology 77:2219-2227.
Rooney, T. P., A. T. Smith, and L. E. Hurd. 1996. Global warming and the regional persistence of a temperate-zone insect (Tenodera sinensis). American Midland Naturalist 136:84-93.
Dussé, K. and L. E. Hurd. 1997. Food limitation reduces body length in mantid nymphs, Tenodera sinensis Saussure (Mantodea: Mantidae): Implications for fitness. Proceedings Entomological Society Washington 99:490-493.
Moran, M. D. and L. E. Hurd. 1997. Relieving food limitation reduces survivorship of a generalist predator. Ecology 78:1266-1270.
Jones, T. H., M. D. Moran, and L. E. Hurd. 1997. Cuticular extracts of five common mantids (Mantodea: Mantidae) of the Eastern United States. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology 116B:419-422.
Moran, M. D. and L. E. Hurd. 1998. Trophic cascade from a generalist predator in a complex terrestrial community. Oecologia 113:126-132.
Hurd, L. E. 1999. Ecology of praying mantids. Chapt. 3 In F. R. Prete, H. Wells, P. H. Wells, and L. E. Hurd., eds., The praying mantids. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, pp. 43-60.
Hurd, L. E. 1999. Mantids in ecological research. Chapt. 16 In F. R. Prete, H. Wells, P. H. Wells, and L. E. Hurd., eds., The praying mantids. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press, pp. 318-321.
Fagan, W. F., M. D. Moran, J. J. Rango, and L. E. Hurd. 2002. Community effects of praying mantids: a meta-analysis of the influences of species identity and experimental design. Ecological Entomology 27:385-395.
Prete, F. R., L. E. Hurd, D. Branstrator, and A. Johnson. 2002. Responses to computer generated visual stimuli by the male praying mantis, Sphodromantis lineola (Burmeister). Animal Behaviour 63:503-510.
Hurd, L. E. 2002. Praying mantis. Magill's Encyclopedia of Science: Animal Life, Salem Press, pp.1301-1302.
Hurd, L. E. 2002. Predation. Magill's Encyclopedia of Science: Animal Life, Salem Press, pp.1304- 1306.
Hurd, L. E. 2003. Mantodea. In , V. H. Resh and R. T. Cardé, eds., Encyclopedia of Insects, Academic Press, pp. 675-677
Beckman, N. and L. E. Hurd. 2003. Pollen feeding and fitness in praying mantids: the vegetarian side of a tritrophic predator. Environmental Entomology 32:881-885.
Hurd, L. E. 2004. Predation: the role of generalist predators in biodiversity and biological control. Encyclopedia of Entomology. Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Hurd, L. E., F. R. Prete, T. H. Jones, T. B. Singh, J. E. Co, and R. T. Portman. 2004. First identification of a putative sex pheromone in a praying mantid. Journal of Chemical Ecology 30:155-166.
Hurd, L. E., R. E. Mallis, K. C. Bulka, and A. M. Jones. 2004. Life history, environment, and deme extinction in the Chinese mantid (Tenodera aridifolia sinensis (Mantodea: Mantidae). Environmental Entomology 33:182-187.
Mallis, R. E. and L. E. Hurd. 2005. Diversity among ground-dwelling spider assemblages: habitat generalists and specialists. Journal of Arachnology 33:101-109.
Hurd, L. E. 2008. Praying mantids (Mantodea). Encyclopedia of Entomology, J. L. Capinera, ed. Springer, pp. 3033-3037.
Hurd, L. E. 2008. Predation: the role of generalist predators in biodiversity and biological control. Encyclopedia of Entomology, J. L. Capinera, ed. Springer, pp. 3038-3042.
Hurd, L. E. 2009. Mantodea. In Encyclopedia of Insects, pp. 597-599 In: V. H. Resh and R. T. Cardé, eds. Academic Press.
Freitas, C.E., F. K. Siqueira-Souza, K.L. Prado, K. C. Yamamoto, and L. E. Hurd. 2010. Fish diversity in amazonian floodplain lakes. International Journal of Medical and Biological Frontiers 16:647-666.
Hurd, L. E. 2010. The publishing ecosystem, reciprocal altruism, and the kindness of strangers. American Entomologist 56:54-55.
Freitas, E. C., Siqueira-Souza, F. K., R. Humston and L. E. Hurd. 2013. An initial assessment of drought sensitivity in Amazonian fish communities. Hydrobiologia 705:159-171.
Prete, F. R. S., Dominguez, J. L. Komito, R. Theis, J. M. Dominguez, L. E. Hurd, and G. J. Svenson. 2012. Appetitive responses to computer-generated visual stimuli by female Rhombodera basalis, Deroplatys lobata, Hierodula membranacea, and Miomantis sp. (Insecta: Mantodea). Journal of Insect Behavior 26:261-282.
Freitas, C. E. C., F. K. Siqueira-Souza, A. C. Florentino, and L. E. Hurd. 2013. The importance of spatial scales to analysis of fish diversity in Amazonian floodplain lakes and implications for conservation. Ecology of Freshwater Fish 23:470-477.
Rivas, A.F., Kahn, J. R., Freitas, C. E., Hurd, L. E. and Cooper, G. 2013. The role of payments for ecological services in the sustainable development and environmental preservation of the rainforest: a case study of Barcelos, Amazonas, BR. International Journal of Social Ecology and Sustainable Development 4:13-27.
Yamamoto, K. C., C. E. C. Freitas, J. Zuanon, and L. E. Hurd. 2014. Fish diversity and species composition in small-scale artificial reefs in Amazonian floodplain lakes: refugia for rare species? Ecological Engineering 67:165-170.
Hurd, L. E., P. A. P. deHart, J. M. Taylor, M. C. Campbell, and M. M. Shearer. 2015. The ontogenetically variable trophic niche of a praying mantid revealed by stable isotope analysis. Environmental Entomology 44:239-245.
deHart, P.A. P., J. M. Taylor, M. C. Campbell, and L. E. Hurd. 2015. Seasonal shifting in diet of the Chinese mantid, Tenodera aridifolia sinensis Saussure (Mantodea: Mantidae) as revealed by oxygen and hydrogen isotopes. Entomological News 125: 153-162.
Rose, R. K. and L. E. Hurd. 2016. Coexistence of two congeneric praying mantids: a seven- year field study of reproductive success and failure. Environmental Entomology
Hurd, L. E., R. G. C. Sousa, F. K. Siqueira-Souza, G. Cooper, J. R. Kahn, and C. E. C. Freitas. 2016. Amazon floodplain fish communities: habitat connectivity and conservation in a rapidly deteriorating environment. Biological Conservation 195:118-127.
Siqueira-Souza, F. K., C. E. C. Freitas, L. E. Hurd and M. Petrere, Jr. 2016. Amazon flood plain fish diversity at different scales: Do time and place really matter? Hydrobiologia 776:99-110.
deHart, P.A.P., J.M. Taylor, J.M. Doran, O., Howell and L.E.Hurd. 2017. Trophic niche differences in arachnid predators between field and forest ecosystems. Entomological News 126:328-336.
Tribuzy-Neto, I.A., K.G. Conceição, F.K. Siwueira-Souza, L.E. Hurd and C.E.C.Freitas. 2017. Condition factor variations over time and trophic position among four species of Characidae from Amazonian floodplain lakes: effects of an anomalous drought. Brazilian Journal of Biology DOI.org/10.1590/1519-6984.166332.
Gall, C.A., R.K. Rose and L.E. Hurd. 2017. Cohabiting with the enemy: comparative population ecology of two mantid species in a successional old field. Environmental Entomology 46:766-770.
Sousa, R.G.C., M.A. Mereles, F.K. Siqueira-Souza, L.E. Hurd and C.E.C. Freitas. 2018. Small dams for aquaculture negatively impact fish diversity in Amazonian streams. Aquaculture Environment Interactions 10:89-98.
Cooper, G.J. and L.E. Hurd. 2019 (publ. 2020). The house and the household: Habitat, demographic independence and ecological populations. Philosophical Topics 47:21-43.
Hurd, L.E., K. Cheng. J. Abcug, L. Calhoun, M. Geno, R. Merhige, and I. Rosenthal. 2020. Climate change, succession, and reproductive success of a praying mantid. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 113:202-206.
Lubich, C.C.F., A.R. Martins, C.E.C. Freitas, L.E. Hurd and F.K. Siqueira de Souza. 2021. Vampire fish (Paracanthopoma sp.) associated with thorny catfish (Doras phlyzakion) in a tributary of the Middle Rio Negro, Brazilian Amazon. Acta Ichthyologica et Piscatoria 51:241-244. DOI 10.3897/aiep.51.64324.
Siqueira-Souza, F.K., L.E. Hurd, K.C. Yamamoto, M.G.M. Soares, C.R.O. Silva, J.P. Lima, P.H.R. Aride, G.J. Cooper, J.R. Khan and C.E.C. Freitas. 2021. Patterns of pelagic fish diversity in floodplain lakes of whitewater and blackwater drainage systems within the Amazon River Basin. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution DOI: 10.3389/fevo.2021.602895.
Hurd LE, Baccaro FB, Pouilly M and Freitas CEC. 2021. Editorial: The Ecology, Evolution, and Preservation of Biodiversity in Amazonian Floodplain Ecosystems. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 9:794472. doi: 10.3389/fevo.2021.794472
Shi, P., Y. Jiao, K.J. Niklas, Y. Li, X. Guo, K. Yu, L. Chen and L.E. Hurd. 2022. Sexual dimorphism in body size and wing loading for three cicada species. Annals of the Entomological Society of America. Annals of the Entomological Society of America, doi.org/10.1093/aesa/saac006.
Oliveira, ACB, CEC Freitas, M Pouilly, KC Yamamoto, LE Hurd, PAP deHart, E.E. Silva, F. Noronha, C.E. Rezende, M.G. de Almeida and F.K. Siqueira-Souza. 2022. Energy transfer by hub species and feeding strategy of fish living in macrophyte meadows of Amazonian floodplain lakes. Foodwebs (in press).
Pereira, L.S., N.S. Oliveira, L.E. Hurd, C.E.C. Freitas and R.G.C. Sousa. Amazonian Arapaima changes its status from threatened species to one of the planet’s most feared invaders of freshwater ecosystems (in review).
Professor and Head, Department of Biology, Washington and Lee University, 1993-2008; Pesquisador Visitante Especial, Universidade Federal do Amazonas, Manaus, AM, Brasil 2013-2015; Editor-in-Chief, Annals of the Entomological Society of America 2007-present; Associate Editor, Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 2021-preent.
Professor of Biology, Ecology Program, School of Life and Health Sciences, University of Delaware, 1973-1993. Joint appointments: (1) College of Marine Studies (1974-1984); (2) Department of Entomology and Applied Ecology, College of Agriculture (1985-1993).
Postdoctoral Fellow, Cornell University, 1972-1973. Studies of population genetics and agro-ecosystems with D. Pimentel
Postdoctoral Fellow, Costa Rica, summer 1972. Behavioral ecology of tropical hummingbirds with L. L. Wolf
American Association for the Advancement of Science
Ecological Society of America (Life Member)
Entomological Society of America (Editorial Board)
Royal Entomological Society of London (Fellow)
Linnean Society of London (Fellow)