Year of Honorary Fellowship, 2001
Dr Guy Louis Bush’s study of the apple maggot fly, Rhagoletis pomonella, has taken him all over the world, including Door County. An insect infestation in the fruit of the local cherry orchards by a species of fly that had previously only attacked apple and hawthorn trees provided Dr. Bush an ideal field research opportunity.
Dr. Bush graduated from Iowa State University with a Bachelor of Science in entomology, which was followed by a Masters of Science from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and a Ph.D. in biology from Harvard. Dr. Bush also spent two years in Australia on a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Melbourne. A significant part of his work was the collection of specimens from the field and this allowed him to travel throughout Australia.
When asked why he chose entomology, Dr. Bush gets a smile on his face and says, “I have always been interested in the natural world and insects in particular. And I have always been a collector. When I was younger we lived in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and I would spend my free time in the rainforest gathering all kinds of wild things – insects, snakes, birds. I covered the trees in my back yard with orchids and epiphytes and I installed an aviary on the roof for my bird collection.” Dr. Bush’s father was working for the U.S. Department of Agriculture as an Agricultural Attaché. He had posts in Brazil and Cuba during Guy’s youth. The diverse species that Bush encountered while traveling with his father in these foreign areas furthered his interest in the natural world and how it worked.
He always told his entomology and evolutionary biology students at the beginning of the semester:
“You have to find the right insect to study, to take you to the right places.”