Dr. Kistner-Thomas is an agroecologist specializing in the ecology and management of major crop pests. She has expertise in invasive species management, climate change, bioclimatic niche modeling, applied biological control, quantitative risk assessment, and specialty crop production systems. She currently serves as a Research Fellow with the USDA Midwest Climate Hub. Her current research involves examining how recent climatic conditions and future conditions projected under climate change impacts insect pest populations and distribution in agroecosystems. The goal of her work is to inform crop pest forecasting and management by identifying high pest risk regions in light of a changing climate.
Dr. Kistner-Thomas received a Ph.D. in biology from the University of Notre Dame in 2014 and an M.S. in Zoology from Washington State University in 2009. Dr. Kistner joined the USDA Midwest Climate Hub in 2016.
Current and Ongoing Projects
- Speciality Crops and Climatic Variability
- Climate Change Impacts on Grasshoppers
Climate Eco-Modeling Work and Publications
- Climate Change Impacts on Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
- Climate Change Impacts on Palmer Amaranth
- Climate Change Impacts on Japanese Beetle
Entomology Today. Climate Change Could Open Doors, Closes Others for Spread of Japanese Beetle. By Andrew Porterfield. Published online April 3 2019.
Inside Science. Earth. Climate Change May Worsen Spread of Invasive Superweed. By Nala Rogers. Published online Sept 21 2018.
Contributed Book Chapters
Hatfield, J. L., E. Kistner-Thomas, C. Dold. 2018. Biological Linkages to Climatology. In: J. L. Hatfield, M. V.K. Sivakumar, J. H. Prueger, editors, Agroclimatology: Linking Agriculture to Climate, Agron. Monogr. 60. ASA, CSSA, and SSSA, Madison, WI. doi:10.2134/agronmonogr60.2016.0004
Selected Peer Reviewed Publications
Kistner, E.J., M. Lewis, E. Carpenter, N. Melhem, C. Hoddle, V. Strode, J. Oliva, M. Castillo, and M.S. Hoddle. 2017. Digital video surveillance of natural enemy activity on Diaphorina citri (Hemiptera: Liviidae) colonies infesting citrus in the southern California urban landscape. Biological Control 115: 141-151. doi:10.1016/j.biocontrol.2017.10.004
Kistner, E.J., N. Melhem, E. Carpenter, M. Castillo, and M.S. Hoddle. 2016. Abiotic and biotic mortality factors affecting Asian citrus psyllid (Hemiptera: Liviidae) demographics in Southern California. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 109: 860-871. doi:10.1093/aesa/saw053
Kistner, E.J., R. Amrich, M. Castillo, V. Strode, and M.S. Hoddle. 2016. Phenology of Asian citrus psyllid (Hemiptera: Liviidae) with special reference to biological control in the residential landscape of southern California. Journal of Economic Entomology 109: 1047-1057. doi:10.1093/jee/tow021
Kistner, E.J. and G.E. Belovsky. 2014. Host dynamics determine responses to disease: additive versus compensatory mortality in a grasshopper-pathogen system. Ecology 95: 2579-2588. doi:10.1890/13-0969/1