Ben McGraw, Ph.D.

Ben McGraw, Ph.D.

  • Associate Professor of Turfgrass Science
243 ASI Bldg.
University Park, PA 16802

Areas of Expertise

  • Turfgrass Entomology
  • Insect behavior
  • Biological Control
  • Cultural and mechanical control
  • Insect Ecology
  • Insecticide resistance


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


50% Teaching

25% Research

25% Extension

Research Interests

Entomology; Turfgrass Science, Biology and ecology of turfgrass insects; insect behavior; spatial distribution of populations; biological control; entomopathogenic nematodes, insecticide resistance development and management 

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

Simard, A., Gendjar, M., Merewitz, E., & McGraw, B. A. Inducible defense phytohormones in annual bluegrass (Poa annua) and creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera) in response to annual bluegrass weevil (Listronotus maculicollis) infestation. Journal of Economic Entomology. Accepted

McGraw, B. A., Koppenhofer, A., Kostromytska, O., Wu, S., & Alm, S. (2022). Insecticidal activity of a petroleum-derived spray oil and an organosilicone surfactant on Listronotus maculicollis (Kirby) adults in laboratory and greenhouse bioassays. Insects 13(11). DOI:

Landschoot, P., Spargo, J. T., & McGraw, B. A. (2022). Survey of turfgrass irrigation water quality in Pennsylvania. Crop, Forage, and Turfgrass Management 8. DOI:

McGraw, B. A., Price, G. Y., Simard, A., & Vittum, P. J. (2021). Reproductive phenology and feeding patterns of Listronotus maculicollis during spring emergence: implications for spring management. Crop Science 61(5), 3197-3205. DOI: 10.1002/csc2.20367

Van Dyke, A., & McGraw, B. A. (2021). First Report of Chaetocnema minuta (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) Associated With Turfgrass Damage in the Desert Southwest United States. Journal of Integrated Pest Management 12(1), 1-5.

Simard, A., Czyzewski, B. D., Price, G. Y., & McGraw, B. A. (2021). Evaluation of nitrogen fertility and plant growth regulator impacts on annual bluegrass weevil (Listronotus maculicollis) oviposition behavior and larval survivorship. International Turfgrass Society Research Journal.

McGraw, B. A., Price, G. Y., Simard, A., & Trotta, K. J. (2021). Empirical and theoretical assessment of mechanical and injection cultivation methods to manage white grubs in turfgrass. International Turfgrass Society Research Journal

Koppenhofer, A. M., McGraw, B. A., Kostromytska, O. S., & Wu, S. Variable effect of larval stage on the efficacy of insecticides against Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) populations with different levels of pyrethroid resistance. (2019) Crop Protection, 125, 1-7.

Czyzewski, B. D., & McGraw, B. A. (2018). Detection of Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) turfgrass canopy activity with the use of a novel fluorescent marking system suggests opportunities for improved mechanical control. Environmental Entomology, 47(6), 1525-1531.

Schlossberg, M. J., McGraw, B. A., & Sebring, R. L. (2018). Ammonia volatilization from putting greens foliarly-fertilized by conventional or stabilized urea. Agricultural and Environmental Letters, 3(1), 1-5. http://doi:10.2134/ael2018.04.0019.

Schlossberg, M. J., McGraw, B. A., Sebring, R. L., & Hivner, K. A. (2018). Nitrogen recovery and loss from Kentucky bluegrass fertilized by conventional or enhanced-efficiency urea granules. Agronomy, 8(144), 1-13.

Czyzewski, B. D., & McGraw, B. A. (2017). Mowing height influences Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) oviposition behavior and mechanical removal from golf course putting greens, but not larval development. Journal of Economic Entomology, 110, 2165 – 

Larson, J. L., Dale, A., Held, D., McGraw, B. A., Richmond, D. S., Wickings, K., & Williamson, R. C. (2017). Optimizing pest management practices to conserve pollinators in turf landscapes: current practices and future research needs. Journal of Integrated Pest Management, 8(1), 1-10. http://doi: 10.1093/jipm/pmx012.

McGraw, B. A., & Schlossberg, M. J. (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.

Schlossberg, M. J., McGraw, B. A., Hivner, K. A., & Pruyne, D. T. (2017). Flux-chamber measurement of NH3 volatilization from putting greens foliarly-fertilized by urea. CLEAN- Soil, Air, Water, 45(9), 1-9. http://doi: 10.1002/clen.201700085.

McGraw, B. A., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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. http://doi: 10.1093/jipm/pmw014.

Van Dyke, A., Ramirez, R. A., & McGraw, B. A. (2015). First report of the invasive crane fly, Tipula oleracea, damaging turfgrass in Utah. Crop, Forage and Turfgrass Management, 1(1), 1-3. ISBN/ISSN #/Case #/DOI #: 10.2134/cftm2015.0124

McGraw, B. A., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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., Rodriguez-Saona, C., Holdcraft, R., Szendrei, Z., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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., Vittum, P. J., Cowles, R. S., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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., & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (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.

Parts of Books

McGraw, B. A & Held, D. (2019). Insect pests. In B. Clarke, L. Treadway, J. Kerns, and M. Tomaso-Peterson (Eds.), Compendium of Turfgrass Diseases [Submitted 2019].

Koppenhöfer, A. M., Kostromytska, O. S., McGraw, B. A., & Ebssa, L. (2015). Entomopathogenic nematodes in turfgrass: ecology and management of important insect pests in North America. In R. Campos-Herrera (Ed.), Entomopathogenesis: Nematode ecology and applied technologies for plant and crop protection (pp. 309 - 327). Switzerland: Springer International Publishing.

Koppenhöfer, A. M., Latin, R., McGraw, B. A. , Brosnan, J. T., & Crow, W. T. (2013). Integrated Pest Management. In J. Stier, B. Horgan, and S. Bonos (Eds.), Turfgrass: Biology, Use, and Management (pp. 933 - 1006). Madison, WI: American Society of Agronomy.

McGraw, B. A. & Koppenhöfer, A. M. (2007). Biology and Management of the Annual Bluegrass Weevil, Listronotus maculicollis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae). In M. Pessarakli (Ed.), Handbook of Turfgrass Management and Physiology (pp. 335-350). Boca Raton, FL: Taylor and Francis.

Courses Taught

ENT 317, Turfgrass Insect Pest Management, (Residential and online classes)

ENT 952A, Cool & Warm Season Turf Arthropod Pests

INTAG 499J, Turfgrass Management Practices in the United Kingdom

TURF 235, Turfgrass (online)

TURF 495, Internship 

TURF 496, Indep Studies