Ben McGraw, Ph.D.

  • Associate Professor of Turfgrass Science
Ben McGraw, Ph.D.
243 ASI Bldg.
University Park, PA 16802
Work Phone: 814-865-1138

Areas of Expertise

  • Turfgrass Entomology
  • Biological Control
  • Insect Ecology


  1. PhD, Entomology, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, 2009
  2. M.S., Entomology, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA, 2005
  3. B.S., Animal Science, University of Maine, Orono, ME, 1998




50% Research

50% Teaching

Research Interests

Entomology; Turfgrass Science, Biology and Ecology of Turfgrass Insects; Insect Behavior; Spatial Distribution of Populations; Biological Control; Entomopathogenic Nematodes

My research program focuses on understanding the biology and ecology of turfgrass insect populations to improve current management practices and develop novel, more sustainable management and monitoring programs.  Given the heavy reliance on chemical controls in many managed turfgrass systems, little is known about the ecology of many soil arthropod pests and communities.  I have used the annual bluegrass weevil (Listronotus maculicollis Kirby), a severe and widespread pest of intensely managed turfgrass, as a model to explore many questions that I have regarding insect ecology.

Professional Background:

  • State University of New York (SUNY) - Delhi, Delhi, NY - Associate professor (2011-14)
  • State University of New York (SUNY) - Delhi, Delhi, NY - Assistant professor (2009-11)
  • Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ- Post- doctoral researcher (2009)
  • AgraQuest Inc., Davis, CA- Associate Biologist-Entomology (2001 – 02)      
  • Dow AgroSciences, Indianapolis, IN- Associate Biologist- Entomology -Biotechnology Division, (2000 – 2001)          
  • Mycogen Corporation/ Dow AgroSciences, San Diego, CA, Assistant Biologist-Entomology, (1998 – 2000)

Selected Publications

Journal Articles (Refereed):

  • McGraw, B.A. and M.J. Schlossberg. 2017.  Fine-scale spatial analysis of soil moisture and entomopathogenic nematode distribution following release in wetting agent-treated turf. Applied Soil Ecology.  114: 52-61. doi: 10.1016/j.apsoil.2017.02.016.
  • McGraw, B.A. and A.M. Koppenhöfer. 2017. A survey of regional trends in annual bluegrass weevil (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) management on golf courses in eastern North America.  Journal of Integrated Pest Management.  8 (1): 2 – 11. doi: 10.1093/jipm/pmw014. 
  • McGraw, B.A. and A.M. Koppenhöfer. 2015. Spatial analyses of Listronotus maculicollis immature stages demonstrate strong associations with conspecifics and turfgrass damage, but not optimal hosts on golf course fairways.  Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata. 157: 307–316. 
  • McGraw, B.A., C. Rodriguez-Saona, R. Holdcraft, Z. Szendrei and A.M. Koppenhöfer.  2011.  Behavioral and electrophysiological responses of Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) to volatiles released from intact and mechanically damaged turfgrass.  Environmental Entomology 40 (2): 412-419.
  • McGraw, B.A. and A.M. Koppenhöfer. 2010.  Spatial distribution of colonizing Listronotus maculicollis populations: implications for targeted management and host preference.  Journal of Applied Entomology.  134: 275-284.
  • McGraw, B.A., P. J Vittum, R.S. Cowles and A.M. Koppenhöfer. 2010.  Field evaluation of entomopathogenic nematodes for the biological control of the annual bluegrass weevil, Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) in golf course turfgrass. Biocontrol Science and Technology.  20 (2): 149-163.
  • McGraw, B.A. and A.M. Koppenhöfer. 2009. Development of binomial sequential sampling plans for forecasting Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) larvae based on the relationship to adult counts and turfgrass damage.  Journal of Economic Entomology 102(3): 1325-1335.
  • McGraw, B.A. and A.M. Koppenhöfer. 2009.  Population dynamics and interactions between endemic entomopathogenic nematodes and annual bluegrass weevil populations in golf course turfgrass. Applied Soil Ecology 41: 77-89.
  • McGraw, B.A. and A.M. Koppenhöfer. 2008.  Evaluation of two endemic and five commercial entomopathogenic nematode species (Rhabditida: Heterorhabditidae and Steinernematidae) against annual bluegrass weevil (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) larvae and adults.  Biological Control 46: 467-475.

Book Chapters:

  • Koppenhöfer, A.M., O. S. Kostromytska, B. A. McGraw, and L. Ebssa. 2014. “Entomopathogenic nematodes in turfgrass: ecology and management of important insect pests in North America” in Entomopathogenesis: Nematode ecology and applied technologies for plant and crop protection, R. Campos-Herrera, ed.  In press.
  • Koppenhöfer, A.M., R. Latin, B.A. McGraw, J.T. Brosnan and W. T. Crow.  2013.  “Integrated Pest Management”, in Turfgrass: Biology, Use, and Management, J. Stier, B. Horgan, and S. Bonos (eds.).  pp. 933 - 1006. 
  • McGraw, B.A. and A.M. Koppenhöfer.  2007. “Biology and Management of the Annual Bluegrass Weevil, Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae)”, in Handbook of Turfgrass Management and Physiology, M. Pessarakli (ed.).  Taylor and Francis, Boca Raton, FL. pp. 335-350.

Courses Taught:

ENT 317 (residential and through World Campus)

ENT 952A

TURF 235 (World Campus)



Research Interests

Turfgrass Science