Piotr Naskrecki is an entomologist and conservation biologist, currently at the Museum of Comparative Zoology of Harvard University, where he works on conservation, biogeography, and evolution of sound-producing insects.
Piotr received his PhD in Entomology at the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Connecticut in 2000. Here, he researched host plant affiliations in mites and the evolution of the acoustic behavior of insects. Between 2002 and 2009 he served as the Director of the Invertebrate Diversity Initiative at the Center for Applied Biodiversity Science of Conservation International (CI). Piotr's work at CI focused on gathering and synthesizing species- and specimen-level data on distribution of numerous groups of invertebrates. This information was then applied to the conservation decision-making process, such as designations of hotspots of biodiversity. He also continues his efforts to eliminate the taxonomic impediment in invertebrate conservation by developing identification tools and resources for invertebrate biologists and conservation practitioners.
His publications, both technical and popular, strive to promote appreciation and conservation of invertebrate animals. His book "The Smaller Majority" (Harvard University Press 2005) illustrates a multitude of threats faced by invertebrate animals. Piotr's new book “Relics: Travels in Nature’s Time Machine” (Chicago University Press 2011) discusses some of the most ancient organisms and ecosystems of the world, and numerous conservation issues they face. Currently Piotr is working on documenting and describing the unique insect fauna of South Africa, and is preparing a monograph and Red List assessment of katydids of this country. At the same time he is involved in an attempt to create a new national park in Ghana to protect the ancient forest of Atewa Plateau. Aside from being a scientist, Piotr is also a superb and innovative photographer, who has mastered the art of creating portraits of some of the smallest, but often exceedingly beautiful organisms.