Beth Capaldi

Elizabeth Capaldi

Professor of Biology, Animal Behavior
Director of Neuroscience | Director of Animal Behavior
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About Elizabeth Capaldi

Educational Background

  • Ph.D., Michigan State University

Teaching Interests

Professor Capaldi teaches in the Department of Biology and the Animal Behavior Program.

  • Animal Behavior (BIOL/ANBE/PSYC 266)
  • Biology of Social Insects (BIOL/ANBE 355)
  • Animal Behavior Laboratory (ANBE/PSYC 296)
  • General Biology (BIOL122)
  • Tropical Ecology (BIOL/ANBE 354)
  • Neuroethology (BIOL/ANBE 342)

Research Interests

I am a behavioral biologist who studies the relationship between insect behavior and brain structure. One goal of my research is to explore the neurobiological underpinnings of ecologically relevant behaviors. I focus my research on honey bees, but I also study other bees found in temperate and tropical habitats. I am interested in how insects find their way in the world and in how social behavior is shaped by the environment. My work fits within the integrative discipline of neuroethology, which combines field research using insects in nature with laboratory studies of learning and the brain.

  • Studies of honey bee biology, including harmonic radar
  • Comparative studies of tropical bees, brains, and behaviors
  • Native bee distributions in Pennsylvania

Laboratory Facilities

  • Colonies of honey bees (Apis mellifera) kept in standard deep Langstroth hives
  • Specialized observation hive laboratory
  • Beekeeping equipment: a 20 frame extractor, uncapping tank, solar wax melter, deep supers, electric uncapping knife, nucleus hives, observation hives
  • Equipment for collecting insects and for ecological research with native bees and other insects
  • Microscopy suite with Nikon stereomicroscopes with photography attachment, fiber optic light
  • Modern histology laboratory for analysis of insect anatomy, including an ice maker, slide warmers, microtomes, distiller, incubator, and fume hood
  • Digital video cameras and editing equipment

Selected Publications

Evans, E.C. & C.A. Butler, 2010. Why do Bees Buzz? Fascinating Answers to Questions about Bees. Rutgers University Press: Piscataway, NJ.

Shah, K.S. E.C. Evans, & M.C. Pizzorno. 2009. Localization of deformed wing virus (DWV) in the brains of the honeybee, Apis mellifera L. Virology Journal 6:182 (30 October 2009).

Capaldi, E.A, S.N. Benson & W.McDiffett. 2008. Native bee diversity in the Central Susquehanna Valley of Pennsylvania. Journal of the Pennsylvania Academy of Sciences 81(2/3): 53-58.

Capaldi, E.A., C.J. Flynn & W.T. Wcislo. 2007. Sex ratio and nest observations of Euglossa hyacinthina (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Euglossini). Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society 80(4): 395-399.

Clause, A.R. & E.A. Capaldi. 2006. Caudal autotomy and regeneration in lizards, Journal of Experimental Zoology 305A: 965-973.

Further Information

Contact Details