EEB Marquee Image Map

Charles S. Henry, Professor (Ph.D., Harvard University)

Check out: The cryptic song species of Chrysoperla
Picture of C. Henry from 2011







Contact Information:

Dr. Charles S. Henry
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology
University of Connecticut
75 North Eagleville Road, Unit 3043
Storrs, CT 06269-3043
Tel: (860) 486-4450, Fax: (860) 486-6364

Current Areas of Research:
Insect behavior and evolution. Processes of speciation. Behavioral ecology, morphology, systematics, and evolution of Neuroptera. Life history, courtship, and communication in lacewings and other insects. Acoustic behavior of insects and bioacoustics.

An area of particular interest to me is the presence of hidden taxonomic diversity in insects, as exemplified by the carnea group of the green lacewing genus Chrysoperla (family Chrysopidae). One Holarctic morpho-species, Chrysoperla carnea (Stephens), has been shown to be made up of perhaps dozens of cryptic species, isolated by species-specific, substrate-borne vibrational songs. The songs are produced by jerking motions of the insect's abdomen. There is no percussive contact with the substrate; instead, the insects "shake" their twigs or leaves upon which they are standing, a phenomenon known as tremulation. In a given song species, the male and female songs are nearly identical. During courtship, the partners will exchange songs more-or-less "politely" in a precise duet, which is a prerequisite for successful copulation.

Examples of the songs of these cryptic species, in oscillograph, sonograph, and sound-clip format, can be experienced by clicking here and then choosing a taxon.

Selected Publications (with a link to papers and number of citations in Google Scholar):

Wells, M. M. and C. S. Henry. 1994. Behavioral responses of hybrid lacewings (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) to courtship songs. J. Insect Behav. 7:649-662.

Henry, C. S., S. J. Brooks, J. B. Johnson & P. Duelli. 1996. Chrysoperla lucasina (Lacroix): a distinct species of green lacewing, confirmed by acoustical analysis (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Syst. Entomol. 21:205-218.

Henry, C. S.  1997.  Modern mating systems in archaic Holometabola: sexuality in neuropterid insects. In Choe, J. C., and B. J. Crespi, Eds., The Evolution of Mating Systems in Insects and Arachnids, pp. 193-210.  Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Wells, M. M., and C. S. Henry.  1998.  Songs, reproductive isolation and speciation in cryptic species of insects: a case study using green lacewings.  In Howard, D., and S. Berlocher, Eds., Endless Forms: Species and Speciation, pp. 217-233.  New York, New York: Oxford University Press.

Henry, C. S., M. L. M. Wells, and C. M. Simon.  1999.  Convergent evolution of courtship songs among cryptic species of the carnea-group of green lacewings (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae: Chrysoperla). Evolution 53(4): 1165-1179.

Henry, C. S., S. J. Brooks, P. Duelli, and J. B. Johnson. 1999. Revised concept of Chrysoperla mediterranea (Hölzel), a green lacewing associated with conifers: Courtship songs across 2800 kilometers of Europe (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Syst. Entomol. 24(4): 335-350.

Henry, C. S., S. J. Brooks, D. Thierry, P. Duelli, and J. B. Johnson. 2001. The common green lacewing (Chrysoperla carnea s. lat.) and the sibling species problem. In McEwen, P. K., T. R. New, and A. E. Whittington, Eds., Lacewings in the Crop Environment, pp. 29-42. Cambridge, England, UK: Cambridge University Press. 546 pp.

Henry, C. S., Brooks, S. J., Duelli, P. & Johnson, J. B. 2002. Discovering the true Chrysoperla carnea (Stephens) (Insecta: Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) using song analysis, morphology, and ecology. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 95: 172-191.

Henry, C. S., Wells, M. L. M. and Holsinger, K. E. 2002. The inheritance of mating song in two cryptic, sibling lacewing species (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae: Chrysoperla). Genetica 116: 269-289.

Henry, C. S., Brooks, S. J., Duelli, P. and Johnson, J. B. 2003. A lacewing with the wanderlust: the European song species 'Maltese', Chrysoperla agilis sp.n., of the carnea group of Chrysoperla (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Systematic Entomology 28: 131-148.

Henry, C. S., Wells, M. L.M.  2004.  Adaptation or random change? The evolutionary response of songs to substrate properties in lacewings (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae: Chrysoperla). Animal Behaviour 68: 879-895.

Henry, C. S.  2006. Acoustic Communication in Neuropterid Insects. In: Drosopoulos S, Claridge M (eds) Insect Sounds and Communication: Physiology, Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution. CRC Press (Taylor and Francis Group), Boca Raton, Florida, pp 153-166.

Henry, C. S., Brooks, S. J., Duelli, P., and Johnson, J. B.  2006.  Courtship song of the South African lacewing Chrysoperla zastrowi (Esben-Petersen) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae): evidence for a trans-equatorial geographic range? Journal of Natural History 40: 2173-2195.

Henry, C. S., Wells, M. L. M.  2006.  Testing the ability of males and females to respond to altered songs in the dueting green lacewing, Chrysoperla plorabunda (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 61: 39-51.

Henry, C. S., Wells, M. L. M.  2007.  Can what we don't know about lacewing systematics hurt us?  A cautionary tale about mass rearing and release of "Chrysoperla carnea" (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). American Entomologist 53: 42-47.

Henry, C. S., Mochizuki, A., Nakahira, K., Haruyama, N. & Nomura, M. 2009. Courtship songs of Chrysoperla nipponensis (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) delineate two distinct biological species in eastern Asia. Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 102, 747-758

Henry, C. S. & Wells, M. L. M.  2009. Sexually dimorphic intrasexual duetting in an otherwise monomorphic green lacewing (Neuroptera, Chrysopidae, Chrysoperla plorabunda): Sexual selection or sex recognition? Journal of Insect Behavior, 22, 289-312.

Noh, S. & Henry, C. S.  2010. Sexually monomorphic mating preferences contribute to premating isolation based on song in European green lacewings. Evolution, 64, 261-270.

Henry, C. S., Brooks, S. J., Johnson, J. B., Venkatesan, T. & Duelli, P.  2010. The most important lacewing species in Indian agricultural crops, Chrysoperla sillemi (Esben-Petersen), is a subspecies of Chrysoperla zastrowi (Esben-Petersen) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Journal of Natural History 44, 2543-2555.

Henry, C. S. & Wells, M. L. M.  2010. Acoustic niche partitioning in two cryptic sibling species of Chrysoperla green lacewings that must duet before mating. Animal Behaviour 80, 991-1003.

Henry, C. S., Brooks, S. J., Johnson, J. B., Wells, M. L. M., & Duelli, P.  2011. Song analysis reveals a permanent population of the Mediterranean green lacewing Chrysoperla agilis Henry (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) living in Central Alaska. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 104, 649-657.

Henry, C. S., Brooks, S. J., Duelli, P., Johnson, J. B., Wells, M. L. M., & Mochizuki, A.  2012. Parallel evolution in courtship songs of North American and European green lacewings (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Biological Journal of the Linnaean Society 105, 776-796.

Henry, C. S., Brooks, S. J., Duelli, P., Johnson, J. B., Wells, M. L. M., & Mochizuki, A. (Accepted for publication) Obligatory duetting behavior in the Chrysoperla carnea-group of cryptic species (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae): its role in shaping evolutionary history. Biological Reviews.

Courses Taught:
Undergraduate Level -- General Entomology; Insect Classification and Identification; Introductory Biology (for biology majors); Evolutionary Biology.
Graduate Level -- Evolution; Insect Phylogeny.

Undergraduate and Graduate Student Advisees (recent and current):

Maxi Polihronakis. Maxi entered the Ph.D. program in the Fall of 2002, graduating in May, 2008.  For her Ph.D. work, her interests were focused on the behavioral ecology and systematics of the May-June beetles, genus Phyllophaga in Scarabaeidae (order Coleoptera). She was (and is) particularly intrigued by the evolution of asymmetrical genitalia in these beetles.  After leaving UConn, Maxi took a postdoctoral position with Dr. Michael Caterino working on the California Beetle Project at the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.  In September 2010 will be working with Dr. Teri Markow as Stock Manager at the UC San Diego Drosophila Stock Center.

Suegene Noh. Suegene entered the Ph.D. program in the Fall of 2003, graduating in December, 2009. She is interested in insect communication and speciation, especially as those relate to acoustical signals.  After some initial behavioral investigations of sexual signaling in treehoppers (order Hemiptera), she turned her attention for her Ph.D. project to acoustic preference functions in the European cryptic species of the green lacewing genus Chrysoperla (carnea group).  She is currently (August 2010) in a postdoctoral position with Jeremy Marshall at Kansas State University, using proteomic approaches to study premating, postzygotic reproductive isolation among closely related species of crickets.

Manuel Morales. Manuel completed his Ph.D. degree at UConn in September, 1999. He then took a position for two years as an RTG Postdoctoral Associate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Maryland, working principally with David Inouye on mutualism. In Fall, 2001, he assumed a full time, tenure-track position as Assistant Professor at Williams College, Williamstown, Massachusetts.  He has been granted tenure at Williams, effective in the 2008-09 academic year.

Collaborators: Janine Caira, Marta Martínez Wells, and Chris Simon

(page updated 22 August 2012)