Dr. Hans Klompen is an Professor in the Department of Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology and Director of the Acarology Collection at The Ohio State University. He studied Animal Ecology at the Catholic University in The Netherlands and received his PhD in Biology from the University of Michigan. Hans then worked as a Postdoctoral Associate at Georgia Southern University and Colorado State University in Fort Collins before coming to Ohio State. Hans is here with us today to tell us about his journey through life and science.
Born in the Netherlands, Hans did his undergraduate study in biology at the Radboud University in Nijmegen. There he majored in Animal Ecology, working on vipers, and minors in Genetics and Acarology (the study of mites). Hans obtained his PhD at the University of Michigan with Barry O’Connor, working on systematics and host associations of sarcoptic mange mites. This was followed by two postdocs working on tick systematics, using morphology (with Jim Oliver at Georgia Southern University) and molecules (with Bill Black at Colorado State University). In 1996, Hans was hired at Ohio State University where he is the Director of the Acarology Collection and main organizer of the annual Acarology Summer Program, a 1-3 week set of intensive workshops teaching identification of mites. His main research interests are mite systematics and evolution, working on a range of groups, including ticks, opilioacarids, and, more recently, deep soil mites. Specific problems Hans is interested in are host associations, evolution of asexual lineages, and the relationship between development and phylogeny. Finally, he has spend a lot of energy on databasing. The far majority of specimens in the OSU Acarology collection are now searchable on-line, a first for a mite collection