Ebony G Murrell

  • Postdoctoral Scholar
411 Agricultural Sciences and Industries Building
University Park, PA 16802
Work Phone: 814-867-1270

Areas of Expertise

  • Community Ecology
  • Plant-Insect Interactions


  1. PhD 2012 Illinois State University
  2. MS 2007 Illinois State University
  3. BS 2002 Illinois Wesleyan University

Research Interests

Broadly speaking, my research encompasses pest insect community ecology.  I study how insect species interact with each other (interspecific competition, predation), how they interact with their environment (oviposition behavior, plant-herbivore interactions), and how insect communities may change in response to environmental variables (habitat age, habitat complexity).  In the past I have worked most extensively with larval mosquitoes that inhabit water-filled containers (treeholes, tires, buckets, etc.), and more recently with soil-plant-insect interactions in organic row crops (corn, soybean, and alfalfa).  My current role in the Kaye lab is investigating changes in multitrophic interactions based on different cover crop and tillage practices in organic PA cropping systems.


Ebony Murrell's CV

Cover Crop Cocktails Project

Kaye Biogeochemistry Lab

Select Publications

Murrell, E.G., and B.T. Barton. Warming alters prey density and biological control in conventional and organic agricultural systems.  Integrative & Comparative Biology, in review.

Schipanski, M., M.E. Barbercheck, E.G. Murrell, J. Harper, D.M. Finney, J.P. Kaye, R.E. Smith, and D.A. Mortensen.  2017  Rotation strategies for balancing multiple objectives in organic feed and forage cropping systems.  Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, 239:219-227.

Murrell, E.G., M.E. Schipanski, D.M. Finney, M.C. Hunter, M. Burgess, J.C. LaChance, B. Baraibar, C.M. White, D.A. Mortensen, and J.P. Kaye. 2017. Achieving diverse cover crop mixtures: Effects of planting date and seeding rate.  Agronomy Journal, 109:1–13.

Murrell, E.G., C.R. Hanson, and E.M. Cullen.  2015.  European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis) oviposition response to soil fertilization practices and arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization of corn. Ecosphere 6(6):art95.

Murrell, E.G., B.H. Noden, and S.A. Juliano.  2015.  Contributions of temporal abundance, oviposition behavior, and multispecies competitive response to invasion success of Aedes japonicus (Diptera: Culicidae) in North America. Biological Invasions, 17(6):1669-1681.

Murrell, E.G., and E.M. Cullen.  2014. Conventional and organic farming practices affect corn nutrition and Ostrinia nubilalis (Lepidoptera:  Crambidae) larval performance.  Environmental Entomology, 43(5):1264-1274.

Murrell, E.G., Ives, A.R., and Juliano, S.A. 2014.  Intrinsic and extrinsic drivers of succession:  Effects of habitat age and season on an aquatic insect community.  Ecological Entomology, 39(3):316-324.

Murrell, E.G., and Juliano, S.A. 2013.  Predation resistance does not trade off with competitive ability in early-colonizing mosquitoes.  Oecologia 173(3):1033-1042.

Murrell, E.G., and Juliano, S.A. 2012.  Competitive abilities in experimental microcosms are accurately predicted by a demographic index for R*. PloS One 7(9): e43458.