Skip to content

About Quinn McFrederick

At the broadest level, I am interested in applying evolutionary and ecological theory to the conservation of wild organisms.  For example, I am currently studying interactions amongst the microbiota of wild bees, with the goal of determining how these interactions affect host phenotype.  Previously, I studied human impacts on wild bee populations.  As an evolutionary biologist, I use a combination of phylogenetics, population genetics and genomics, bacterial community next-generation sequencing surveys, and experimentation to answer these questions.  It is all fascinating to me, so I feel lucky to be able to do what I do. Besides science, my other passions are bike racing, music, and my lovely wife and daughter. I have pretty diverse tastes in bike racing and music, but my favorite kind of bike racing is cyclocross.

Quinn McFrederick’s CV:

Assistant Professor, University of California, Riverside.

Department of Entomology
900 University Avenue
University of California, Riverside
Riverside, California 92521
(951) 827-5817

quinnmc(put at symbol here)


2010 Ph.D., Summer 2010. University of Virginia, Biology (Douglas R. Taylor, advisor).

2004 M.A., San Francisco State University, Conservation Biology (Gretchen LeBuhn, advisor)

1992 B.A., University of California, Berkeley, Integrative Biology

Postdoctoral Research

2011-2013, NSF Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Biology, University of Texas at Austin (Ulrich Mueller, Bill Wcislo, advisors).

2010 June-December. Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Rochester (John Jaenike, advisor).

Research Grants

2011-13 NSF Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Biology (award number 1003133, $189,000)

2008-10 NSF Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant (co-PI with Douglas R. Taylor, award number 0808454, $11,913)

2005 Exploratory Research Award, Department of Environmental Sciences, the University of Virginia ($1,000)


2010 Award for Excellence in Scholarship in the Sciences from the Vice-President for Research, University of Virginia.  The award recognizes “excellence in original scholarship by Ph.D. students at the University” ($5,000)

2010 Graduate Teaching Assistant Award from the Department of Biology, University of Virginia ($250)


2014 Corby-Harris V, Snyder LA, Schwan MR, Maes P, McFrederick QS, Anderson KE. Origin and effect of Alpha 2.2 Acetobacteraceae in honey bee larvae and description of Parasaccharibacter apium gen. nov., sp. nov. Appl Environ Microbiol 80:7460–7472.

2014 McFrederick QS, Wcislo WT, Hout MC, and Mueller UG. Host species and developmental stage, but not host social structure, affect bacterial community structure in socially polymorphic bees. FEMS Microbiology Ecology. 88: 398-406.

2014 McFrederick QS, Mueller UG, James RR. Interactions between fungi and bacteria influence microbial community structure in the Megachile rotundata larval gut. Proceedings of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences. 281: 20132653.

2013 Engel P, James R, Koga R, Kwong WK, McFrederick QS, Moran NA. Standard methods for research on Apis mellifera gut symbionts. Journal of Apicultural Research (Part of the COLOSS BEEBOOK). 52: 07.

2013 McFrederick QS, Roulston, T, and Taylor D.  Evolution of conflict and cooperation of nematodes associated with solitary and social sweat bees.  Insectes Sociaux. 60: 309-317.

2013 McFrederick QS, Cannone, J.J., Gutell, R.R., Kellner, K, Plowes, R.M. and Mueller, U.G.  Host specificity between Hymenoptera and lactobacilli (Lactobacillales: Lactobacillaceae) is the exception rather than the rule.  Applied and Environmental Microbiology. 79: 1803-1812

2013 McFrederick QS, Haselkorn T, Verocai G, and Jaenike J.  Cryptic Onchocerca species infecting North American cervids, with implications for the evolutionary history of host associations in Onchocerca.  Parasitology. 140: 1201-1210.

 2013 McFrederick QS, and Taylor D.  Evolutionary history of nematodes associated with sweat bees. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 66: 847-856.

2012 McFrederick QS, Wcislo W, Taylor D, Ishak H, Dowd S, and Mueller U. Environment or kin: whence do bees obtain acidophilic bacteria? Molecular Ecology 21: 1754-1768.

2011 Antonovics J, Boots M, Abbate J, Baker C, McFrederick QS and Panjeti V. Biology and evolution of sexual transmission. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1230: 12-24.

2009 McFrederick QS, Fuentes JD, Roulston TH, Kathilankal JC and Lerdau, M. Effects of Air pollution on biogenic volatiles and ecological interactions. Oecologia 160: 411-420.

2008 McFrederick QS, Kathilankal JC and  Fuentes JD. Air pollution modifies floral scent trails. Atmospheric Environment 42: 2336-2348.

2006 McFrederick, QS and LeBuhn, G. Are urban parks refuges for bumble bees (Hymenoptera, Apidae)? Biological Conservation 129: 372-382.

Additional Training

2012.  Quantitative Evolutionary and Comparative Genomics: Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology.  The workshop consists of seminars, tutorials, and independent research projects in genomics.

2003 The Bee Course: AMNH’s Southwestern Research Station.  The course consists of lectures, field collection, and hands-on identification of native bees.

Press Coverage

2009 Virginia Public Radio, interview with myself and Tara Adiseshan (my advisee) on her winning the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair grand prize ($50,000 scholarship).

2008 International media coverage of my work investigating the destruction of floral s scents by air pollution and how it may affect ecological interactions:

Newspaper and magazine coverage: Washington Post (front page), Harpers and many others.

Radio interviews: Canadian Broadcast Corporation’s nationally syndicated “As it Happens”, non-syndicated interviews with radio stations in Virginia, Australia and Ireland.

Television: Nationally syndicated Associated Press news segment.

2003 San Francisco Chronicle newspaper article on Master’s research. “Biologists abuzz over bumblebee’s decline.”

Conference Presentations


2011 Ecological Society of America, Austin, Texas, Oral presentation: The microbiota of halictid bee nests: Do wild bees use probiotics?

2010 Entomological Society of America, San Diego, California, Oral presentation: Transmission and fitness effects of nematode associates of social and solitary sweat bees.

Evolution, Portland, Oregon, Oral presentation: Effective transmission and evolution of nematode associates of social and solitary sweat bees.

2009 Evolution, Moscow, Idaho, Oral presentation: Evolution of nematodes in social and solitary sweat bees.

2007 Entomological Society of America annual meeting, San Diego, California, Oral presentation: Halictid bees harbor cryptic species of host specific nematodes.

2004 Society for Conservation Biology Annual meeting, New York, New York, Oral presentation: Are urban parks refuges for bumble bees?

Bay Area Conservation Biology Symposium, Davis, California, oral presentation: Bumble bees in San Francisco’s urban parks.


2006 International Union for the Study of Social Insects Congress. Washington DC, poster presentation: Nematode associates of social and solitary sweat bees.

Invited Seminars and Lectures

2011  University of Texas, Austin. Population Biology Seminar

Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Presentation for University of Panama students as part of a workshop in chemical ecology (in Spanish).

2010 University of Rochester, Behavorial Ecology. Invited lecture. Instructor: Jack Werren.

Blandy Experimental Farm Summer Research Series.

Emory University PBEE Seminar, invited by Leslie Real and Vijay Panjeti.

2009 University of Virginia, August Teaching Workshop. Led workshop on grading student writing for incoming graduate students and faculty at the University of Virginia.

2008 University of Virginia, Conservation ecology. Invited lecture. Instructor: Deborah Lawrence.

General Public Talks

2004 San Francisco Natural History Lecture Series. Public talk on bumblebee conservation.

City College of San Francisco Biology Lecture Series. Public talk on bumblebee conservation.

Professional Society Affiliations

Entomological Society of America

Society for the Study of Evolution

Teaching Experience

University of Virginia, Graduate Teaching Assistant

2009 Introductory Molecular and Cell Biology (lab).

Ecology and Evolution (discussion).

2008 Comparative Vertebrate Morphology (lab).

Introductory Organismal Biology (lab and head teaching assistant).

2007 Comparative Vertebrate Morphology (lab).

Introductory Organismal Biology (lab).

2006 Introductory Molecular and Cell Biology (lab).

Statistics for the Environmental Sciences (lab).

2005 Fundamentals of Ecology (lab).

2004 Fundamentals of Ecology (lab).

Mentoring experience

2011-12 Jaclyn Ly (undergraduate), University of Texas at Austin.  Research Project: Viruses in social and solitary bees.  Recipient of an Undergraduate Research Award from UT Austin ($1000) and a Research Experience for Undergraduates supplement from the NSF ($7,491).

2009-10 Aine O’Sullivan (undergraduate) and Corlett Wood (graduate student), University of Virginia.  Research project: The effects of social structure on inbreeding: comparisons between closely related social and solitary sweat bees.

2008-09 Tara Aidesheshan, home schooled high school student. Research project: molecular phylogenetics of halictid bees that host nematodes.  Project received grand award best of show at the Virginia Piedmont Regional Science Fair, March 5, 2009 and the grand prize (one of the top three finalists receiving a $50,000 scholarship) at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Reno, Nevada May 10-15 2009.

2007-08 Jessica Wignall, University of Virginia undergraduate. Research project: Population structure in nematode associates of halictid bees: effects of sociality.

2005 Lindsay Parsons, Blandy Experimental Farm Research Experience for Undergraduates student. Research project: Nematode infection rates of females versus males in a solitary halictid bee.

Professional Service

Reviews for FEMS Microbiology Ecology, Microbial Ecology, Molecular Ecology, PLoS One, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Rob Unckless permalink
    September 20, 2010 12:52 am

    Great job so far! (just wanted to let you know that someone is reading)

  2. tia dias permalink
    January 29, 2011 10:35 pm

    Very impressive, a long list. We need to hear you present sometime. Great pic. How is your lovely wife? Send flowers, lots of flowers.

  3. Mom and Pop permalink
    April 4, 2011 9:01 pm

    I did not realize the extensive list of all you have accomplished. Very impressive so far, keep up the good work, you make your parents proud.

  4. Tom Chester permalink
    May 15, 2012 7:06 pm

    Quinn, I have been thinking about you and today did a google search to find you. Congrats on landing in Austin for a post-doc. Your academic career is impressive.

    I still have bees, about two dozen colonies. I saw a small paper wasp nest last weekend, and it reminded me of the one you had in the aqaurium at the Randall. I’d like to set one up like that. Any suggestions?

    Please send me a note when you have a chance. My email address is still


  1. Why we need bees: Pollinator conservation in the 21st century – Quinn McFrederick in Jan 2014 Café | Central Valley Café Scientifique

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: