social insect integrative biology

kennesaw state university

Our Research

Research in the Penick lab focuses on the evolution and ecological success of social insects (ants, bees, wasps, and termites). Pound for pound, social insects and humans make up the largest animal biomass on dry land and occupy nearly every terrestrial ecosystem. To understand the traits that have facilitated this success, our research takes an integrative approach that combines techniques in ecology, physiology, behavior, and evolution. We work with a broad variety of species from ecosystems that range from remote tropical forests to the sidewalks of New York City.

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in the news

Lab News

  • Recruiting MS students for Fall 2020

    The Penick lab is looking for MS students to start Fall 2020. Are you interested in social insect ecology and evolution? Contact me!
  • Honeycombs at NASA Biocene workshop

    Dr. Penick and Dr. Bhate of ASU presented their work on insect honeycomb and 3D-printing at NASA’s Biocene workshop in Cleveland, OH
  • New paper out in Proceedings B

    Just like humans, ants have a distinct microbiome that is associated with their nests. One thing that’s different: ants are better keeping their nurseries clean!
  • Penick Lab Fall 2019 at KSU

    The Penick Lab joined Kennesaw State University this Fall. We’re now accepting students!


Kennesaw State University

370 Paulding Ave NW

Kennesaw, GA 30144

Lab: SC 350

Office: SC 324

©2019 Penick Lab