Professor Keith Walters

Professor Keith Walters BSc, PhD, ARCS, MRSB, CBiol, FRES

Professor of Invertebrate Biology and Pest Management 

Contact details

Send Keith Walters a message

Tel: +44 (0)1952 815107
Academic Department: Crop and Environment Sciences
Building: Ancellor Yard
Office: AY05
Research profile: ORCID

Research Scientist (Insect Biology and Ecology) and Research Director/Manager.

Current research interests are organised under two (interrelated) multidisciplinary programmes focused on:

  1. The mitigation of environmental damage caused by chemical pollutants through the establishment of ecotoxicological hazards resulting from, and minimised reliance on, conventional chemical inputs to the agri-environment and their impact on surrounding natural habitats (including the integration of the principles and techniques of functional systems ecology to enhance biodiversity and support development of Integrated Pest Management strategies).
  2. The biology, impact assessment and response to invasive organisms introduced by the trade and, against a background of climate change, potential damage to both industry and the natural environment. 

In recent years my interests have been focused on multidisciplinary approaches at the interface between environmental biology and optical physics, fluid dynamics, electrical engineering, socio-biology and geography to mitigate risks of environmental damage.

Publications

Author of more than 135 books, chapters and scientific papers on both indigenous insects and species of quarantine significance (see "Publications" tab for examples).

Recent publications:

  • Identification of the aggregation pheromone of the melon thrips, Thrips palmi. Plos One (2014). (DOI: 01/2014; 9(8):e103315)
  • Neonicotinoids and bumble bees (Bombus terrestris): Effects on nectar consumption in individual workers. Pest Management Science (2014). (DOI: 10.1002/ps.3868)

Professional Memberships

  • Association of Applied Biologists (Organising committee of the AAB IPM and Biocontrol Group 2012 - current date)
  • Royal Entomological Society (Vice President 1994/95; Member of Council 1992-95 and 2008-2011; various other leadership roles and responsibilities)
  • Society of Biology

Research projects

Publications

  • Thompson, HM; Wilkins, S; Harkin, S, Milner, S & Walters, KFA (2014) Neonicotinoids and bumble bees (Bombus terrestris):  Effects on nectar consumption in individual workers. Pest Management Science (DOI: 10.1002/ps.3868)
  • Sudhakar, AVS; Kirk, WDJ, Murai, T, Walters, KFA, Hamilton, JGC (2014) Identification of the Aggregation Pheromone of the Melon Thrips, Thrips palmi. Plos One 9(8), e103315 (DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0103315)
  • Elston, C; Thompson, HM; Walters. KFA (2013) Sub-lethal effects of thiamethoxam, a neonicotinoid pesticide, and propiconazole, a DMI-fungicide, on colony initiation in bumblebee (Bombus terrestris) micro-colonies. Apidologie (DOI: 10.1007/s13592-013-0206-9). Apidologie (DOI: 10.1007/s13592-013-0206-9)
  • Walters, KFA (2013) Data, data everywhere but we don’t know what to think? Neonicotinoid insecticides and pollinators. Outlooks on Pest Management 24(4), 151-155
  • Cuthbertson, AGS; Mathers, JJ; Croft, P; Nattriss; N; Blackburn, LF; Luo, W; Northing, P; Muari, T; Jacobson, RJ; Walters,KFA (2012) Prey consumption rates and compatibility with pesticides of four predatory mites from the family Phytoseiidae attacking Thrips palmi Karny (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). Pest Management Science 68, 1289–1295. Pest Management Science 68, 1289–1295
  • Glass, CR; Walters, KFA; Gaskell, PH; Lee, YC; Thompson, HM; Emerson, DR; Gu, XJ (2010) Recent advances in computational fluid dynamics relevant to the modelling of pesticide flow on leaf surfaces. Pest Management Science 66, 2-9
  • Cuthbertson, AGS, Blackburn, LF, Northing, P, Luo, W, Cannon, RJC; Walters, KFA (2010) Chemical compatability testing of the entomopathogenic fungus Lecanicillium muscarium to control Bemisia tabaci in glasshouse environment. International. Journal of Environmental Science and Technology 7(2), 405-409.
  • Cuthbertson, AGS, Blackburn, LF, Northing, P, Luo, W, Cannon, RJC; Walters, KFA (2009) Leaf dipping as an environmental screening measure to test chemical efficacy against Bemisia tabaci on poinsettia plants. International Journal of Environmental Science and Technology 6(3), 347-352.
  • Down, RE; Cuthbertson, AGS; Mathers, JJ; Walters, KFA (2009) Dissemination of the entomopathogenic fungi, Lecanicillium longisporum and L. muscarium, by the predatory bug, Orius laevigatus, to provide concurrent control of Myzus persicae, Frankliniella occidentalis and Bemisia tabaci. Biological control 50, 172-178
  • Walters, KFA; Sansford, C; Slawson, D (2009) Phytophthora ramorum and Phytophthora kernoviae in England and Wales – Public Consultation and New Programme. In: Proceedings of the Fourth Sudden Oak Death Science Symposium , Santa Cruz, California, 25-33 ( )
  • Cuthbertson, AGS; Blackburn, LF; Northing, P; Mathers, JJ; Luo, W; Walters, KFA (2009) Environmental evaluation of hot water treatments to control Liriomyza huidobrensis infesting plant material in transit. International Journal of Environmental Science and Technology 6, 1-8
  • Thornham, DG; Blackwell, A; Evans, KA; Wakefield, M; Walters, KFA (2008) Locomotory behaviour of the seven-spotted ladybird, Coccinella septempunctata, in response to five commonly used insecticides. Annals of Applied Biology 152, 349-359.
  • Richards EH: DeMarzo D; Port GR; Dani P; Walters KFA (2008) Effects of the nematode Phasmarhabditis hermaphrodita and of venom from the endoparasitic wasp Pimpla hypochondriaca on survival and food consumption of the pest slug Deroceras reticulatum; Implications for novel biocontrol strategies. Pest Management Science 64, 711-719
  • Thornham, DG; Stamp, C; Walters, KFA; Mathers, JJ; Wakefield, M; Blackwell, A; Evans, KA (2007) Feeding responses of adult seven-spotted ladybirds, Coccinella septempunctata (Coleoptera, Coccinellidae), to insecticide contaminated prey in laboratory arenas. Biocontrol Science and Technology 17(10): 983-994
  • Cuthbertson, AGS; Walters, KFA; Northing, P; Luo, W (2007) Efficacy of the entomopathogenic nematode, Steinernema feltiae, against sweet potato whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae), under laboratory and glasshouse conditions. Bulletin of Entomological Research 97, 9-14.
  • Thornham,; Wakefield, ME; Blackwell, A; Evans, KA; Walters, KFA (2007) Sexual dimorphism in the distribution and biometrics of the palpal sensilla of Coccinella septempunctata, and a description of a new sensillum. Acta Entomologica Sinica 50, 667-674.
  • Cannon, RJC; Matthews,L; Collins, DW; Agallou, E; Bartlett, PW; Walters, KFA; Macleod, A; Slawson, DD; Gaunt, A (2007) Eradication of an invasive alien pest, Thrips palmi. Crop Protection 26, 1303-1314.
  • Cox, PD; Matthews, L; Jacobson, RJ; Cannon, R; MacLeod, A; Walters, KFA (2006) Potential for the use of biological agents for the control of Thrips palmi (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) outbreaks. Biocontrol Science and Technology 16, 871-891.
  • Mulligan, EA; Ferry, N; Jouanin, L; Walters, KFA; Port, GR; Gatehouse, AMR (2006) Comparing the impact of conventional pesticide and use of a transgenic pest-resistant crop on the beneficial carabid beetle Pterostichus melanarius. Pest Management Science 62, 999-1012.
  • North, JP; Cuthbertson, AGS; Walters, KFA (2006) The efficacy of two entomopathogenic biocontrol agents against adult Thrips palmi (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). Journal of Invertebrate Pathology 92, 77-80.
  • Hatherly, IS; Bale, JS; Walters, KFA (2005) UK winter egg survival in the field and laboratory diapause of Typhlodromips montdorensis. Physiological Entomology 30, 87-91.
  • Hatherly, IS; Bale, JS; Walters, KFA (2005) Intraguild predation and feeding preferences in three species of phytoseiid mite used for biological control. Experimental and Applied Acarology 37, 43-55.
  • Cuthbertson, AGS; Walters, KFA (2005) Pathogenicity of the entomopathogenic fungus Lecanicillium muscarium against the sweetpotato whitefly Bemisia tabaci under laboratory and glasshouse conditions. Mycopathologia 160, 315-319.
  • Cuthbertson, AGS, Walters, KFA and Deppe, C. (2005) Compatibility of the entomopathogenic fungus Lecanicillium muscarium and insecticides for eradication of sweetpotato whitefly, Bemisia tabaci. Mycopathologia 160, 35-41.
  • Smith, RM; Cuthbertson, AGS; Walters, KFA (2005) Extrapolating the use of an entomopathogenic nematode and fungus as control agents for Frankliniella occidentalis to Thrips palmi. Phytoparasitica 33, 436-440.
  • Cuthbertson, AGS; North, JP; Walters, KFA (2005) Effect of temperature and host plant leaf morphology on the efficacy of two entomopathogenic biocontrol agents of Thrips palmi (Thysanoptera:Thripidae). Bulletin of Entomological Research 95, 321-327.
  • Oakley, JN; Ellis, SA; Watling, M; Walters, KFA; Young, JEB (2005) Responses of summer cereal aphid populations to reduced rate aphicide applications in field plots of winter wheat. Agricultural and Forest Entomology 7, 211-218.
  • Cuthbertson, AGS; Walters, KFA; Northing, P. (2005) The susceptibility of Bemisia tabaci immature stages to the entomopathogenic fungus Lecanicillium muscarium, on tomato and verbena foliage. Mycopathologia 159, 23-29.
  • Gwynn, DM; Callaghan, A; Gorham, J; Walters, KFA; Fellowes, MDE (2005) Resistance is costly: trade-offs between immunity, fecundity and survival in the pea aphid. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B-Biological Sciences 272, 1803-1808.
  • Head, J; Lawrence, A.; Walters, (2004) KFAThe efficacy of the entomopathogenic nematode, Steinernema feltiae, against Bemisia tabaci in relation to plant species Journal of Entomology and Nematology 128, 543-547
  • Gladders, P; Evans, N; Fitt, B; Walters, K; Turner, J; Northing, P; Sutherland, K; Campbell, S; Selley, A; Hall, B; Ellerton, D; Naylor, D (2004) The PASSWORD project: a decision support system for managing pests and diseases of winter oilseed rape in the UK IOBC wprs Bulletin 27, 31-36
  • Northing, P; Walters, KFA; Barker, I; Foster, GN; Harrington, R; Taylor, MS; Tones, S; Morgan, D (2004) Use of Internet for provision of user specific support for decisions on the control of aphid-borne viruses. (In: Aphids in a New Millennium. . Proceedings of the VIth International Symposium on Aphids. (Ed. by J.-C.Simon, C.A.Dedryver, C.Rispe & M.Hullé), pp. 331-336. Versailles, INRA Editions.)
  • Foster, GN; Blake, S; Tones, S; Barker, I; Harrington, R; Taylor, M; Walters, KFA; Northing, P; Morgan, D (2004) Decision support for BYDV control in the UK: can a regional forecast be made field specific? (In: Aphids in a New Millennium. Proceedings of the VIth International Symposium on Aphids. (Ed. by J.-C.Simon, C.A.Dedryver, C.Rispe & M.Hullé), pp. 287-291. Versailles, INRA Editions.)
  • Hatherley, I.; Bale, J.S.; Walters, K.F.A.; Worland, MR (2004) Thermal biology of Typhlodromips montdorensis: implications for its introduction as a glasshouse biological control agent in the UK. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata 111, 97-109.
  • Singh, SR; Walters, KFA; Port, GR; Northing, P (2004) Consumption rates and predatory activity of adult and fourth instar larvae of the seven spot ladybird Coccinella septempunctata (L.), following contact with dimethoate residues and contaminated prey in laboratory arenas. Biological Control 30, 127-133.
  • Tosh, CR; Morgan, D; Walters, KFA; Douglas, AE (2004) The significance of overlapping plant range to a putative adaptive trade-off in the black bean aphid Aphis fabae Scop. Ecological Entomology 29, 488-497.
  • Birkle, LM; Minto, B; Walters, KFA; Douglas, AE (2004) Microbial genotype and insect fitness in an aphid-bacterial symbiosis. Functional Ecology 18, 598-604.
  • Brown, CL; Bale, JS; Walters, KFA (2004) Freezing induces a loss of freeze tolerance in an overwintering insect. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B-Biological Sciences 271, 1507-1511.

Additional Information

RECENT INTERNATIONAL / NATIONAL SYNERGISTIC ACTIVITIES:

  • European Environmental Monitoring Advisory Group (Terrestrial Organisms) (2012 - current date)
  • ICPPR – International Commission for Plant Pollinator Relationships;  Including 2014 Conference Organising Committee (2012 - current date)
  • Belgium Government (BELSPO) Science Reviewer (2012 - current date)
  • AAB Biological Control and Integrated Pest Management Group (2012 - current date)
  • Editor of SCI Journal “Environmental Toxicology & Chemistry” (2014 - current date)
  • Senior Editor of SCI Journal “Agricultural and Forest Entomology” (1999-2010)                                     
  • Advisory Panel of the Journal “Nature” (2011-2015)
  • UK Government Plant Health Strategy Board (2011-2012)
  • UK Government Interdepartmental Programme Board (Plant Health (2009-2011)
  • Wales Phytophthora Coordination Group (2009-2012)
  • Wales Phytophthora Operational Response Team (2009-2012) 
  • Scotland Phytophthora Steering Group (2010-2012)
  • England and Wales Phytophthora Project Board (2009-2012)
  • Defra Science Advisory Group (Phytophthora) (2009-2012)
  • Phytophthora Industry Liaison Group (2009-2012)
  • Phytophthora Modelling Steering group (2010-2012) 
  • Recent member of University Teaching Assessment Panel 
  • PhD External Examiner: Keele University; Imperial College London; University of York; University of Southampton

Tel: +44 (0)1952 815107
Academic Department: Crop and Environment Sciences
Building: Ancellor Yard
Office: AY05
Research profile: ORCID

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