Christine Johnson

Curatorial Associate

(212) 769-5605


Ph.D. Psychology, Biopsychology subprogram, January 2000
The Graduate School & University Center of The City University of New York
M.A. Psychology, Biopsychology subprogram, June 1997
The Graduate School & University Center of The City University of New York
B.A. Psychology, May 1992 New York University

Research Interests

Christine Johnson is a behavioral ecologist, whose research focuses on interactions between social parasites and their hosts, with a specialization on slave-maker ants. Social parasites specialize in parasitizing the behaviors of their host and often use chemical manipulation as well as aggression to invade societies of other species. Her other research focuses on the ultimate and proximate mechanisms that drive divergent life history strategies in ants, as well as reproductive dominance hierarchies in species that lack a morphologically driven division of labor. She is also working on a revision of the plant bug genus Reuteroscopus (Miridae: Phylini), the males of which have elaborate feathered genitalia. Much of her time in the Division of Invertebrate Zoology is focused on getting the specimens databased and imaged so that the data can be preserved in an alternative form and shared with the public for research use.

If you are interested in volunteering on one of the projects below, reach out! There are many rewarding opportunities! [email protected]

Collections Responsibility: Collections overall

Current Projects:

Digitizing the Terrestrial Polyneoptera, NSF-PEN

Digitizing the Marine Invertebrate Collection, NSF-TCN DigIn

Digitizing Meliponini Bees, NSF-TCN

Past Projects:

Coral Rehousing & Databaing Project, IMLS


Entomologica Americana, Managing Editor

Journal of Negative Results, Associate Editor

Annales Zoologici Fennici, Associate Editor


Weirauch, C., Seltmann, K. C., Schuh, R. T., Schwartz, M. D., Johnson, C. A., Feist, M. & Soltis, P. S. 2016. Areas of endemism in the Nearctic: a case study of 1,339 species of Miridae (Insecta: Hemiptera) and their plant hosts. Cladistics doi:10.1111/cla.1216

Johnson, C.A. (2012) Reflections on Toby Schuh: His person, his accomplishments, his ways. Entomologica Americana Special Festschrift Volume 118(1): 25-26.

Henry, T. J. & Johnson, C.A. (2012) Randall Tobias Schuh: A celebration of his career and accomplishments on the occasion of his 70th birthday. Entomologica Americana Special Festschrift Volume 118(1): 2-6.

Johnson, C.A. & Sündstrom, L. (2012) Cuticular chemistry in the facultatively polygyne ant Formica truncorum (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Annales Zoologici Fennici, 49(1-2):1-17.

Lommelen, E., Wenseleers, T., Johnson, C.A., Drijfhout, F.P., Billen, J., & Gobin, B. (2010) A combination of fertility signals and aggression  regulates reproduction in the ant Gnamptogenys striatulaJournal of Insect Behavior. 23(3): 236-249

Slater, J. A., Schuh, R.T., Cassis, G., Johnson, C.A. & Pedraza-Peñalosa. (2009) Revision of Laryngodus Herrich-Schaeffer, an Allocasuarina feeder, with comments on its biology and the classification of the family (Heteroptera: Lygaeoidea: Rhyparochromidae). Invertebrate Systematics 23:111-133.

Johnson, C.A., Phelan, L.P., & Herbers, J.M. (2008) Stealth and reproductive dominance in a rare parasitic ant. Animal Behaviour 76:1965-1976.                                                 

Johnson, C.A. (2008) Slave-maker ant competition for a shared host and the effect on coevolutionary dynamics. Ecological Monographs 78:445-460.                                                      

Lommelen, E., Johnson, C.A., Drijfhout, F.P., Billen, J., & Gobin, B. (2008) Egg marking in the queen-less ant Gnamptogenys striatula: the source and mechanism. Journal of Insect Physiology 54:727-392.

Herbers, J.M. & Johnson, C.A. (2007). Social structure and winter survival in acorn ants. Oikos 116:829-835.

Johnson, C.A. & Herbers, J.M. (2006). Impact of parasite sympatry on the geographic mosaic of coevolution. Ecology 87:382-394.

Lommelen, E., Johnson, C.A., Drijfhout, F.P., Billen, J., Wenseleers, T. & Gobin, B. (2006). Cuticular hydrocarbons provide reliable cues of fertility in Gnamptogenys striatulaJournal of Chemical Ecology32:20023-2034.

O’Hara, B., Fowler, M.S., & Johnson, C.A. (2006). Why negatives should be viewed as positives. Nature Correspondence439:782 (non-refereed).

Johnson, C.A., Sundström, L., & Billen, J. (2005). Development of alary muscles in single- and multiple-queen populations of the wood ant Fomica truncorumAnnales Zoologici Fennici 42:225-234.

Johnson, C.A., Topoff, H., Vander Meer, R.K., & Lavine, B. (2005). Do these eggs smell funny to you?: A study of egg discrimination by hosts of a slave-maker ant. Behavioral Ecology & Sociobiology 57:245-255.

Kotze, D.J., Johnson, C.A., O’Hara, R.B., Vepsäläinen, K., & Fowler, M. (2004). The need for a journal of negative results in ecology & evolutionary biology. Journal of Negative Results – Ecology & Evolutionary Biology 1:1-4.

Johnson, C.A., Lommelen, E., Allard, D. & Gobin, B. (2003). The emergence of collective foraging in the arboreal Gnamptogenys menadensisNaturwissenschaften, 90:332-336.

Johnson, C.A., Topoff, H., Vander Meer, R.K., & Lavine, B. (2002). Host queen killing by a slave-maker ant queen: when is a host queen worth attacking? Animal Behaviour, 64:807-815.

Johnson, C.A., Vander Meer, R.K., & Lavine, B. (2001). Changes in the cuticular hydrocarbon patterns of a slave-maker queen after killing a Formica host queen. Journal of Chemical Ecology, 27:1787-1804.

Johnson, C.A., Agosti, D., Delabie, J.H., Dumpert, K., Williams, D.J., von Tschirnhaus, M. & Maschwitz, U. (2001). Acropyga and Azteca ants with scale insects: 20 million years of intimate symbiosis. American Museum Novitates, 3335:1-18.

Johnson, C.A. (2000). Responses of two potential host species to pupae of the obligatory slave-making ant, Polyergus brevicepsJournal of Insect Behavior, 13:711-720.

Teaching Experience

Richard Gilder Graduate School, AMNH, Biological Specimen Informatics, Spring 2013

New York Botanical Garden, NY. Entomology, Spring 2013

Columbia University, NY. Insect Diversity (Adjunct Faculty), Fall 2009

Pace University, NY. Entomology (Adjunct Faculty). Fall 2007

The Ohio State University, OH.  Guest Lecturer, Social Insect Biology - 2004, 2005, Evolution -2006

The Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium. Elements of Kin Recognition (Guest Lecturer).  Spring 2002.

Hunter College, NY.  Psychology (Instructor).  September 1996 – December 1997.

Hunter College, NY.  Ethology (Instructor).  September 1996

School of Visual Arts, NY.  Animal Behavior (Adjunct Faculty).  September 1996.

Hunter College, NY.  Social Psychology (Teaching Assistant).  Spring 1997.

Hunter College, NY.  Introductory Psychology (Teaching Assistant).  Fall 1995 -  Spring 1996.

Hunter College, NY.  Experimental Psychology (Teaching Assistant).  Fall 1993 – Spring 1994.

New York University, NY.  Introduction to Statistics (Teaching Assistant).  Fall 1992.

Graduate Committees

  • Kevin Purce, CUNY
  • Sam Marquand, Animal Behavior & Conservation Program, Hunter College