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The user name Pompilid refers to a group of wasps that prey on spiders, the best known of which is the Tarantula Hawk, a conspicuous resident of the Sonoran Desert where I live.

My name is Michael J. Plagens. I was borne in Detroit, Michigan, USA 1954. I attended Lakeview H.S. in St. Clair Shores and Wayne State University in Detroit. I eventually migrated to Tucson in Arizona where I completed Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Entomology. I took botany as a minor.

In 1981 I began my Ph.D. at the University of Florida in Gainesville. My dissertation was on spider ecology in corn fields. My PhD with major in entomology and minor in zoology was completed in 1985.

I returned to Arizona in 1986 and have devoted my spare time to the study and enjoyment of the Sonoran Desert.

On May 12, 2005 I was married to Zahra, a Nandi from Kenya. She is teaching me Kalenjin and Kiswahili. I am looking forward to many years of nature study in Kenya!

Digital Photographs Flora



Digital Photographs Arthropoda


Other Biota