A Mississippi State University graduate student has earned a national award for his paper on the biology of insect pests.

Nathan Little of Charleston, a graduate student in the Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Entomology and Plant Pathology, received the annual student award titled “Appreciation for the Natural History of Insect Pests.” His paper on subterranean termites was described as the most interesting and novel peer-reviewed research paper among more than 20 applications that were reviewed this year from students around the world.

The award is sponsored by the TREE Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to tree research, exploration and education. The award is conferred by the Ambrosia Symbiosis Research Group.

The title of Little’s paper is “Preference of Native Subterranean Termites for Wood Containing Bark Beetle Pheromones and Blue-Stain Fungi,” and it was published in the Journal of Insect Behavior.

The Tallahatchie County native earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in forest products from MSU. He is pursuing a doctorate in entomology. His advisor is John Riggins.