Shasta Henry


Bug Girl!

I'm from: Launceston, Tasmania
Current Location: Hobart.
Position: PhD Candidate, School ofGeography, Planning and Spatial Sciences, University of Tasmania
Field of research/work: Entomology & Invertebrate Ecology
YTS Years: 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022

Shasta's Notable career moments

  • Quit my job as a white water raft guide to start Uni

  • Fail statistics exam (I've always been bad at Maths)

  • Internship at the Smithsonian museum of natural history, DC.

  • Several rejected PhD project proposals

  • Begin PhD on changing fire regimes and insect responses

  • Get diagnosed with ADHD - this explains the past 6 years!

    Finally complete PhD!

    Give a TEDx talk on naming Tasmanian insect species

About Shasta Henry

I am an entomologist – I study insects. Insects are the most abundant and diverse animals on the planet! Therefore they live in almost every environment and are involved in almost every ecosystem; and I find that diversity fascinating.

Because there are so many insects there are many ways to study them. I have worked on cotton farms, collecting caterpillar eggs and testing how pesticides work. I have worked on a team discovering new species of beetles from the Amazonian Rainforest. Insects are used in forensics to help solve crimes, to inspire drones and technology, to help fight invasive species and to produce more food for us.

At the University of Tasmania I study how our native insects are being impacted by climate change. When a fire burns the Wilderness World Heritage Area, which insects survive and which ones disappear – and how long for?
I also love insects because they are beautiful, with their shiny shells and bright patterns, or when they are ugly, spiny and gross. I love them because they are tiny but complete, working organisms – it’s like holding a galaxy the size of a marble in your hand.
“All children have a bug phase; I never grew out of mine.” E.O.Wilson.

Watch Shasta's videos

Introducing Shasta Henry: (suitable for all ages)

A day in the life of an Entomologist: (suitable for all ages)

Catching Insects with Shasta Henry: (suitable for all ages)

Problem Solving: Displaying insects in hand sanitiser! (suitable for all ages)

Caterpillar Science and Dreamtime Stories with Shasta Henry:

Shasta's Photo Gallery