People from all over the world visit Phasmatodea.com every day, which went online in 2000. The website began as a project funded by phasmid experts Oskar Conle and Frank Hennemann. The clear goal was to provide a broad source of information, photographs and possibilities for the identification of species of this fascinating order of insects; not only for scientists but also for breeders and anyone interested in these insects. We are now the world's leading phasmid website, with the largest photo gallery and most comprehensive content on this insect order.
Oskar Conle and Frank Hennemann began their love of entomology and, specifically, stick insects when they were children. From a very young age, they began to write their first scientific articles. Frank was the first to publish in a magazine specialized in stick insects, back in 1992; Oskar also began publishing shortly after, in 1995. Since then, they have not stopped working and publishing on different taxonomic issues related to these insects. They are considered the leading experts on neotropical stick insects. Additionally, Frank is also an expert on stick insects from Sri Lanka and Sulawesi.
To date, they have more than 100 publications and more than 220 new species for science. In 2018, they were awarded the prestigious J.O. Westwood Medal with Marsh Prize for Excellence in Insect Taxonomy together with Dr. Francis-Seow Choen and Paul Brock.
They are currently affiliated researchers at the State Collection of Zoology of Bavaria, Germany (SNSB).
The addition of biologists Bruno Kneubühler (Switzerland) and Pablo Valero Riquelme (Spain) to the team gave new impetus.
Bruno joined the team around 2011 and brought new and interesting methods applied to the maintenance and breeding of stick insects in captivity. His ingenuity and dedication led him to be the first (and sometimes the only) to have success with species that are difficult to keep in captivity. He is considered by many to be the best stick insect breeder of all time. Today, Bruno no longer maintains stick insects, but his legacy remains on this website.
Pablo, like Oskar and Frank, also began to be interested in entomology from an early age. He started breeding stick insects when he was only 10 years old. His interest in entomology ended up leading him to study Biology at the University of Murcia, Spain. He immediately entered, as an intern student, the Department of Zoology and Physical Anthropology. There he was allowed to open a new line of research focused on the stick insects of the Iberian Peninsula and thanks to this he discovered and described his first new species for science, Pijnackeria recondita Valero & Ortiz, 2015.
When he joined the “Phasmatodea Team”, back in 2017, his first contribution was to completely renew the website. Since then he has dedicated himself full-time to taxonomic research on stick insects in collaboration with Oskar and Frank. He is currently an expert on stick insects from Europe and America.
Currently, Oskar, Frank and Pablo maintain open lines of research in collaboration with universities from different countries in Europe and America.