Conrad Gillett


Conrad Gillet

Conrad Gillett with Dynastes hercules and Megasoma actaeon in Orellana, Ecuador,
August 2007.



Although my professional entomological work has concentrated on developing advanced high-throughput molecular tools for characterizing beetle diversity, evolution, and biology, with a focus on the highly diverse phytophagous superfamily Curculionoidea (weevils, bark, and ambrosia beetles), my interest in scarabs remains undiminished. I have studied and scarabs, and other beetles, since childhood, when I was brought up in Brazil, acquiring a passion for nature in general, and for beetles in particular.

My present primary scarab interests lie in the systematics, faunistics, and ecology of the subfamilies Scarabaeinae and Dynastinae, although I also have strong interests in Cetoniinae, and Rutelinae, as well as Geotrupidae and Lucanidae. My main ‘expertise’ is in the Palaearctic fauna, especially that of my home continent, Europe and that of the Arabian Peninsula (where I resided for several years). I also have a very good knowledge of several Neotropical groups.

After completing a M.Sc. in taxonomy and biodiversity at The Imperial College, London, where I focused on the phylogeny of Cerambycidae, I worked as curator of Coleoptera in the (former) Department of Entomology at the Natural History Museum (NHM) in London for three years, gaining valuable experience in one of the finest and most comprehensive entomological collections in the world. Concurrently, I also regularly volunteered at the Hope Entomological Collections of the Oxford University Museum of Natural History, where I identified and mounted scarabs and re-curated some of their holdings. During 2009-2010, I was the curator of invertebrates at the National Zoological Collections of Suriname, where I undertook research fieldwork in Amazonia and developed the collections.

I gained a Ph.D. from the NHM and the University of East Anglia in 2014, conducting
original biomolecular research on the higher-level relationships within the weevils. This
project was supervised by Dr. B. Emerson and Prof. A. Vogler, culminating in the successful
reconstruction of the most densely sampled molecular phylogeny of weevils to that date. In
addition to traditional taxonomic methods, I am trained in advanced molecular phylogenetics laboratory techniques and in computational bioinformatics analyses of genomic data obtained through contemporary high-throughput sequencing technologies.

I have since worked in diverse academic positions, including as a lecturer and module
organizer in biodiversity, and as a senior research assistant in evolutionary biology in the
laboratory of Prof. M. Gage at UEA, studying the effects of sexual selection in
a Tribolium model system. My postdoctoral experience has included working as a research
scholar at the University of Florida in the research group of Dr. J. Hulcr, investigating
ambrosia beetle-fungal-bacterial symbioses.

I am presently a postdoctoral research fellow in Dr. D. Rubinoff’s lab at the University
of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, investigating the diversity, evolution, and conservation of the native
Hawaiian scolytines through targeted fieldwork and molecular techniques:

I have always enjoyed fieldwork and have lived on five “continents”, undertaking insect
sampling in: the Atlantic rainforest, Amazon basin, Brazilian cerrado and caatinga, the
Guyanan shield, tropical and temperate Andes, Patagonia, Central America, Eastern and
Western North America, the Caribbean, the Arabian Peninsula, tropical and southern Africa,
tropical and temperate Asia, Polynesia, the and across much of Europe, especially the
Mediterranean countries.



Conrad P.D.T. Gillett | Postdoctoral Research Fellow
University of Hawaiʻi Insect Museum
Department of Plant and Environmental Protection Sciences, Entomology
College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources
University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, 3050 Maile Way, Room 310
Honolulu, HI, 96822-2231, USA



Gillett, C.P.D.T., I. Pulakkatu-thodi, and D. Rubinoff (2018) Rediscovery of an enigmatic bark beetle endemic to the Hawaiian Islands (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae). The Coleopterists Bulletin 72(4): 811-815.

Li, You., Y. Ruan, M. Kasson, E. Stanley, C.P.D.T. Gillett, A. Johnson, M. Zhang, and J. Hulcr (2018). 3-D structure of the ambrosia beetle mycangia and prothoracic musculature revealed through micro-CT. Journal of Insect Science 18(5): 1-8; DOI: 10.1093/jisesa/iey096

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and I. Barr (2018). New country records of scarab dung beetles in Swaziland and Zambia (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae). The Coleopterists Bulletin 72(3):433-438; DOI: 10.1649/0010-065X-72.3.433.

Linard, B., A. Crampton-Platt, J. Moriniere, M.J.T.N. Timmermans, C. Andujar, P. Arribas, K. E. Miller, J. Lipecki, E. Favreau, A. Hunter, C. Gómez-Rodríguez, C. Barton, R. Nie, C.P.D.T. Gillett, T. Breeschoten, L. Bocak, and A.P. Vogler (2018). The contribution of mitochondrial metagenomics to large-scale data mining and phylogenetic analysis of Coleoptera. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 128: 1-11; DOI:1 0.1016/j.ympev.2018.07.008

Gillett, C.P.D.T., C.H. Lyal, A.P. Vogler, and B.C. Emerson (2018). Statistical evaluation of monophyly in the ‘broad-nosed weevils’ through molecular phylogenetic analysis combining mitogenomic and single-locus sequences (Curculionidae: Entiminae, Cyclominae, and Hyperinae). Diversity 10(2), 21; Commemorative Special Issue "Systematics and Phylogeny of Weevils" DOI: 10.3390/d10020021

Toussaint, E.F.A. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2018). Rekindling Jeannel’s Gondwanan vision? A first glance at the evolution of Carabinae with a focus on Calosoma caterpillar hunter beetles. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 123(1): 191-207;
DOI: 10.1093/biolinnean/blx128

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and D. Rubinoff (2017). A second adventive species of pinhole-borer
(Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Platypodinae) on the islands of Oahu and Hawaii. Proceedings of the Hawaiian Entomological Society 49: 51-57;

Gillett, M.P.T. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2017). New observations on three species of eucraniine dung beetles in Mendoza and San Juan Provinces, Argentina (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae). The Coleopterists Bulletin 71(4): 817-820; DOI: 10.1649/0010-065X-71.4.817.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and M.P.T. Gillett (2017). Records of the tiger beetles Cylindera(Plectographa) apiata apiata (Dejean, 1825) and C. (P.) drakei drakei (Horn, 1892) from Mendoza Province, Argentina (Coleoptera: Carabidae: Cicindelinae). Cicindela 49(2-3): 37-40.

Gillett, C.P.D.T., A.J. Johnson, I. Barr, and J. Hulcr (2016). Metagenomic sequencing of dung beetle intestinal contents directly detects and identifies mammalian fauna. bioRxiv; DOI:10.1101/074849

Young, M.T., L. Steel, D. Foffa, S.L. Brusatte, J.J.N. Kitson, C.P.D.T. Gillett, M.A. Bell, R. Allain, and Y. Lepage (pre-print, 2016). An early origin and diversification of macrophagous metriorhynchid crocodylomorphs, with evidence for multiple instances of parallel evolution. PeerJ; DOI: 10.7287/peerj.preprints.1345v1

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and M.P.T. Gillett (2015). The Dynastinae of the island of Saba, Dutch
Caribbean (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Insecta Mundi 0433: 1-9.

Linard, B., A. Crampton-Platt, C.P.D.T. Gillett, M.J.T.N Timmermans, and A.P. Vogler (2015). Metagenome skimming of insect specimen pools: potential for comparative genomics. Genome Biology and Evolution 7(6): 1474-1489; DOI: 10.1093/gbe/evv086

Gillett C.P.D.T., A. Crampton-Platt, M.J.T.N Timmermans, B.H. Jordal, B.C. Emerson, and A.P. Vogler (2014). Bulk de novo mitogenome assembly from pooled total DNA elucidates the phylogeny of weevils (Coleoptera: Curculionoidea). Molecular Biology and Evolution 31(8): 2223-2237; DOI:10.1093/molbev/msu154

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and R. Preziosi (2010). A new record and locality for the Neotropical scarab beetle Ontherus compressicornis Luederwaldt, 1931 (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae). Lambillionea 110(1): 88-90.

Gillett, C.P.D.T., M.P.T. Gillett, J.E.D.T. Gillett and F.Z. Vaz-de-Mello (2010). Diversity and
distribution of the scarab beetle tribe Phanaeini in the northern states of the Brazilian
Northeast (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae). Insecta Mundi 0118:1-19.

Gillett, C.P.D.T., A. Drumont and Y. Ponchel (2010). The rare rhinoceros beetle Ceratophileurus lemoulti Ohaus, 1911 in French Guiana and Suriname (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidea: Dynastinae: Phileurini). Zookeys 34: 193-198;
DOI: 10.3897/zookeys.34.240

Noriega, J.A., C.P.D.T. Gillett, A. Sandoval-Mojica, J.I. Blanco, L.C. Pardo, G. Valencia and A. Santibáñez (2009). New records and distributional range extension for Phanaeus haroldi Kirsch, 1871 (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae): A consolidation of biological and biogeographic information. Lambillionea 109(4):403-414.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2009). A new country record for Chrysina (Plusiotis) diversa Ohaus, 1912 (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Rutelinae) in Central America. Insecta Mundi 0108: 1-3.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2009). New records of dynastine scarab beetles in the tribes Oryctini,
Agaocephalini and Dynastini from Cayo district, Belize (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Dynastinae). Insecta Mundi 0099: 1-9.

Gillett, M.P.T and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2009). Confirmation of the occurrence of Temnorhynchus baal Reiche and Saulcy on the island of Naxos, Greece (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Dynastinae). Lambillionea 109(2):198-199.

Gillett, C.P.D.T, W.D. Edmonds and S. Villamarin (2009). Distribution and biology of the rare scarab beetle Megatharsis buckleyi Waterhouse, 1891 (Coleoptera: Scarabaeinae: Phanaeini). Insecta Mundi 0080: 1-8.

Moravec, J. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2009). Annotated list of specimens of Madagascan Cicindelidae deposited in The Natural History Museum London. Folia Heyrovskyana, series A 16(4): 131-154.

Gillett, M.P.T. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2009). Cleridae of the United Arab Emirates and Northern Oman. Lambillionea 109(1): 89-94.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2009). Dichotomius maya Peraza and Deloya, 2006 (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae: Coprini) in Belize, a new country record for this Central American dung beetle. Insecta Mundi 0064: 1-4.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and M.P.T. Gillett (2008). Bubas bubaloides Janssens, 1938 (Coleoptera:
Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae) in Europe. Lambillionea 108(4): 529-533.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2007). A new record and locality for Megapenthes lugens (Redtenbacher, 1842) (Elateridae) in Southern England: Silwood Park, Berkshire. The Coleopterist 16(3): 146-148.

Rejzek, M., C.P.D.T. Gillett, A. Drumont and M.P.T. Gillett (2005). On the distribution and biology of the Genus Anthracocentrus Quentin and Villiers, 1983 in the Persian Gulf region (Coleoptera, Cerambycidae, Prioninae). Lambillionea 105(3): 353-369.

Gillett, M.P.T. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2002). A winter survey of insects and other terrestrial
invertebrates on Marawah Island, Abu Dhabi. Tribulus 12(2): 12-19.

Gillett, M.P.T. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (1997). A solitary representative of the flower chafer beetles in the Al Ain region: Stalagmosoma albella (Pallas, 1781) (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). Tribulus 7(1): 22.

Book chapters, newsletter and magazine articles, book prefaces etc.

Gillett M.P.T. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2005). Insects and other arthropods. In: The Emirates: A Natural History. Hellyer P. and Aspinall S. J. [eds], pp 168-194 and 352-356. Trident Press, London.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2011). Preface. In Carvajal L., C. Villamarin, and A. M. Ortega A. Escarabajos del Ecuador: Principales géneros. Serie Entomología, No. 1. Instituto de Ciencias Biológicas. Escuela Politécnica Nacional, Quito, Ecuador.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and A. Sedláček (2010). Beginner’s guide: Geotrupidae. Beetle News 2(2): 5- 8.

Gillett, C.P.D.T (2010). Scarabeoid species of the day. Scarabs 60: 8.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2010) Surinamese scarabaeological sojourn - A Year in the Amazon, Part 2: March-May 2009. Scarabs 56: 1-7.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2010) Surinamese scarabaeological sojourn - A Year in the Amazon, Part 1: March-May 2009. Scarabs 55: 1-7.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and M. Bunalski. (2009). Beginner’s guide: Scarabaeidae: Onthophagus. Beetle News 1(2): 7- 11.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2009). Beautiful scarabs in the collection of the Natural History Museum, London. Scarabs 46:4-7.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. and M.P.T. Gillett (2009). A very simple and effective trap for necrophagous Scarabaeinae. Scarabs 42: 17-21.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2009). Some unusual scarabs from the collections of the Natural History Museum, London (BMNH). Scarabs 40: 1-5.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2009). A passion for French rose chafers: an exceptional site for Cetoniinae in Ardèche, France. Scarabs 36:1-12.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2009). Anonymous contributions gratefully accepted! Scarabs 35: 4-5.

Gillett, C.P.D.T. (2008). Collecting in Belize May/June 2006. Scarabs 29: 1-14.

Sturge, H. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2013) Ask the scientist. Wild World 6:10-11 (interview for NHM children’s magazine).

Sturge, H. and C.P.D.T. Gillett (2008). What’s it like to work at the museum? Second Nature 25:19 (interview for NHM children’s magazine).

Publications in the media

Science – ‘Can’t find that rare leopard anywhere? Ask a dung beetle.’

Popular Science – ‘The DNA inside dung beetles' guts could help to identify other animals.’


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