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Edward Mondor - Georgia Southern University. Statesboro, GA, US

Edward Mondor

Associate Professor | Georgia Southern University


Ed Mondor specializes in Insect Ecology and Forensic Entomology.


Ed Mondor was born and raised in Brandon, MB, Canada. He attended his hometown university, Brandon University, where he received a BSc in Psychology with a minor in Botany (1993). Ed then attended the University of Alberta where he received his MSc in Zoology (1996), working on tachinid parasitoids of the forest tent caterpillar. He received his PhD from Simon Fraser University (2001), with a project focusing on the evolution of alarm signaling behavior in aphids. He completed postdocs at the University of Calgary (2003) and the University of Wisconsin-Madison (2005) and was employed as a Junior Entomologist with the University of Hawaii (2005-2006), prior to arriving at Georgia Southern University (2006 - Present). Ed now retains the rank of Associate Professor in the Department of Biology at Georgia Southern. Along with teaching three courses every semester, he has almost 40 peer-reviewed publications in journals such as Ethology, Functional Ecology, Global Change Biology, Journal of Evolutionary Biology, Journal of Insect Behavior, and PLoS One, and has had his research featured in the Editor’s Choice section of Science Magazine. In addition to his studies on insect behavior, ecology, and evolution, he is the only practicing Forensic Entomologist in Georgia. He has assisted various law enforcement agencies (e.g., Bulloch County Sheriff’s Office, Georgia State Patrol, Savannah-Chatham Metro Police Homicide Unit) with determining the “time of death” of human decedents.

Areas of Expertise (3)

Environmental Science

Insect Ecology

Forensic Entomology

Education (2)

Simon Fraser University: Ph.D.

University of Alberta: M.Sc.

Media Appearances (3)

Life recycled on a wilderness gravel bar

Juneau Empire  


Flies are “the first, and arguably most dominant, organisms that colonize and decompose vertebrate remains,” wrote biologist Edward Mondor of Georgia Southern University in his readable paper “The Ecology of Carrion Decomposition.”...

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From Flesh to Bone: The Role of Weather in Body Decomposition

weather.com  online


“Temperature is the number one thing that influences the rate of decomposition,” affecting the bacteria and insects that aid in the process, Edward Mondor, associate professor of insect ecology at Georgia Southern University, told Weather.com.

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Editors' Choice

Science Magazine  online


Mondor et al. show that the aphid Uroleucon nigrotuberculatum, which feeds on goldenrod, exhibits phenotypic variation in the production of winged and nonwinged offspring as carbon dioxide and ozone concentrations increase, and that these responses interact with responses to beetle predators and hymenopteran parasitoids.

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Articles (4)

Reply: A Correspondence From a Maturing Discipline

Journal of Medical Entomology

EB Mondor

2014 In his letter to the editor of the Journal of Medical Entomology, Dr. Wells raises concerns regarding a proliferation of terms used to describe various subcomponents of the postmortem interval (PMI). These terms have arisen with the development of various models to understand the period of time that passes between death, colonization by insects, and the discovery of remains (Amendt et al. 2007, Villet and Amendt 2011, Tomberlin et al. 2011b).

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Transgenerational behavioral plasticity in a parthenogenetic insect in response to increased predation risk

Journal of Insect Behavior

CN Keiser, EB Mondor

2013 Reliable cues of increased predation risk can induce phenotypic changes in an organism’s offspring (i.e. transgenerational phenotypic plasticity). While induction of defensive morphologies in naïve offspring in response to maternal predation risk is widespread, little is known about transgenerational changes in offspring behavior. Here we provide evidence for transgenerational behavioral plasticity in the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum. When pre-reproductive individuals of two genotypes (“pink” and “green”) were exposed to the alarm pheromone (E)-β-Farnesene (EBF), a reliable cue of increased predation risk, next-generation offspring altered their feeding site choices relative to the location of the maternal aphids. Offspring of EBF-treated aphids occupied “safer” feeding sites: green offspring occupied “safer” feeding sites in the natal colony, while pink offspring dispersed to occupy sites on neighboring plant leaves.

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All clone-mates are not created equal: fitness discounting theory predicts pea aphid colony structure

Journal of Insect Behavior

KM Duff, EB Mondor

2012 As many animals form aggregations, group-living is believed to be adaptive. It is not clear, though, if clonal aggregations should have spatial structure, as protecting clone-mates is the genetic equivalent of protecting self. ‘Fitness discounting’ theory states that immediate reproductive opportunities are of greater value than are delayed opportunities. Thus, we hypothesized that spatial structure should exist in colonies of unequal-aged, clonal organisms like aphids. We predicted that, compared to reproductive (5th instar) individuals, young (2nd and 3rd instar) juveniles (i.e., the youngest instars capable of emitting an alarm signal) should occupy the most dangerous feeding positions. As individuals approach reproductive maturity and alarm signals decline (4th instar), they should occupy increasingly safer feeding positions. We tested these predictions by documenting the spatial distribution of two (green and pink) pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, asexual lineages (“clones”) at 1, 3, 6, 24, 48, 72, 96, and 120 h after host plant colonization. Confirming our hypothesis, we found that early (2nd and 3rd) instar aphids occupied feeding positions with the highest predation risk. Upon reaching the penultimate (4th) instar, individuals dispersed from the colony to colonize other leaves. Thus, pea aphid colonies are not random aggregations; aphid colony structure can be explained by fitness discounting theory.

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The Ecology of Carrion Decomposition

Nature Education Knowledge

Mondor, E. B., Tremblay, M. N., Tomberlin, J. K., Benbow, E. M., Tarone, A. M. & Crippen, T. L.

2012 Carrion, or the remains of dead animals, is something that most people would like to avoid — it is visually unpleasant, emits foul odors, and may be the source of numerous pathogens. Decomposition of carrion, however, provides a unique opportunity for scientists to investigate how nutrients cycle through an ecosystem. Many people might ask, "Why is this subject important?" Simply put, understanding carrion decomposition is important from both a basic and applied perspective. Carrion decomposition experiments allow us to better understand how ecosystems function so that we can more effectively manage natural environments. It also enhances our abilities to identify the factors influencing decomposition rates, and to solve the forensic mysteries surrounding the unexplained deaths of animals, including humans.

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