Martin Hill

SARCHI Research Chair in Entomology

Professor and Head of Entomology

Director: Centre for Biological Control

PhD, Entomology, Rhodes University (1995)

Office: F18, First Floor, Life Science Building
046 603 8712


Prof. Hill completed his PhD at Rhodes University in 1995. He worked at the Plant Protection Research Institute (PPRI) of the Agricultural Research Council in Pretoria from 1995 to 2002 and moved to Rhodes University as Head of Entomology from 2002.  Promoted to full Professor in January 2009 and to Distinguished Professor in January 2018.  Currently holds the South Africa Research Chair Initiative chair in “Insects in sustainable agricultural ecosystems”.

Professor Hill’s research interests include the biological control of invasive alien aquatic weeds and insect pests. He has worked extensively throughout Africa on the control of aquatic weeds such as water hyacinth, salvinia, water lettuce, red water fern and parrot’s feather.  Recent research includes the development of microbial agents (entomopathogenic fungi and viruses) for the control of pests in citrus and other crops.

Recent Publications

Coombes, C.A., Hill, M.P., Moore, S.D. and Dames, J.F. 2017.  Potential of the entomopathogenic fungal isolates for control of the soil-dwelling life stages of Thaumatotibia leucotreta Meyrick (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) in citrus.  African Entomology 25: 235-238.

Uyi, O., Zachariades, C., Marais, E. and Hill, M.P. 2017. Reduced mobility but high survival: thermal tolerance and locomotor response of the specialist herbivore, Pareuchaetes insulata (Walker) (Lepidoptera: Erebidae), to low temperatures.  Bulletin of Entomological Research 107: 448–457.

Canavan, K., Paterson, I.D. and Hill, M.P. 2017. Testing the enemy release hypothesis on tall-statured grasses in South Africa, using Arundo donax, Phragmites australis and Phragmites mauritianus as models Invasive Plant Science and Management 10:53–60.

Zachariades, C., Paterson, I.D., Strathie, L.W., Hill, M.P. and van Wilgen, B.W. 2017. Biological control as a management tool for suppression of invasive alien plants in South Africa. Bothalia 47 (2):

Hill, M.P. and Coetzee, J., 2017. The biological control of aquatic weeds in South Africa: Current status and future challenges.  Bothalia 47(2):

Arp, R., Fraser, G.C.G. and Hill, M.P. 2017. Quantifying the economic   water savings benefit of water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) control in the Vaalharts Irrigation Scheme. Water SA 43: 58-66.

Van Achterberg, C., Thackeray, S.R., Moore, S.D. and Hill, M.P.  2017. A new species of Phanerotoma Wesmael (Hymenoptera: Braconidae: Cheloninae) reared from carob moth in South Africa.  Zoo Taxa 4227(1): 127-134.

Jones, R.W., Hill, J.M., Coetzee, J.A., Avery, T.S., Weyl, O.L.F. and MP Hill. 2017. The abundance of an invasive freshwater snail Tarebia granifera (Lamarck, 1822) in the Nseleni River, South Africa. African Journal of African Journal of Aquatic Science 42 (1): 75-81, DOI: 10.2989/16085914.2017.1298984.

Thackeray, S.R., Moore, S.D., Kirkman, W. and Hill, M.P. Biology and rearing of Ectomyeolis ceratonaie Zeller (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae), carob moth, a pest of multiple crops in South Africa.  African Entomology 25(2): 474-480.

Ngxande-Koza, S., Heshula, U.L.P. and Hill, M.P. 2017. Changes in chemical composition of essential oils from leaves of different Lantana camara L. (Verbenaceae) varieties after feeding by the introduced biological control agent, Falconia intermedia Distant (Hemiptera: Miridae).  African Entomology 25(2): 462-473.

Lloyd, M., Knox, C.M., Thackeray, S.R., Hill, M.P. and Moore, S.D. 2017.  Isolation, identification and genetic characterisation of a microsporidium isolated from carob moth, Ectomyelois ceratoniae (Zeller) (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae). African Entomology 25(2): 529-533.

Van der Merwe, M., Jukes, M.D., Rabalski, L., Knox, C.M., Opoku-Debrah, J., Moore, S.D., Krejmer-Rablaska, M., Szewczyk, B. and Hill, M.P.  2017.  Genome analysis and genetic stability of the Cryptophlebia leucotreta granulovirus (CrleGV-SA), after 15 years of commercial use as a biopesticide.  International Journal of Molecular Sciences 18: 2327. DOI:10.3390/IJMS18112327.

Weaver, K.N., Hill, J.M., Martin, G.D., Paterson, I.D., Coetzee, J.A. and Hill, M.P. 2017. Community entomology: insects, science and society. Journal for New Generation Sciences 15 (1): 176-186.

Coetzee, J.A. Hill, M.P., Ruis-Tellez, T., Starfinger, U. and Brunnel, S. 2017. Monographs on Invasive Plants in Europe: Eichhornia crassipes (Mart.) Solms-Laub.  Botany Letters. 164 (4): 303-326.

Jones, R.W., Hill, J.M., Coetzee, J.A. and Hill, M.P. 2018. The contributions of biological control to reduced plant size and biomass of water hyacinth populations.  Hydrobiologia 807: 377–388.

Osariyekemwen, O.U., Zachariades, C., Heshula, L.U. and Hill, M.P. 2018. Development and reproductive performance of a specialist herbivore depend on seasonality of, and light conditions experienced by the host plant. PLoS ONE 13(1): e0190700.

Canavan, K., Paterson, I.D., Lambertini, C. & Hill, M.P.; 2018. Expansive reed populations—alien invasion or disturbed wetlands?, AoB PLANTS 10(2): ply014,

Marsberg, T., Jukes, M.D., Krejmer-Rabalska, M., Rabalsk, L.., Knox, C.M., Moore, S.D., Hill, M.P. and Szewczyk, B. 2018. Morphological, genetic and biological characterisation of a novel alphabaculovirus isolated from Cryptophlebia peltastica (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae). Journal of Invertebrate Pathology 157: 90-99.

Martin, G.D., Hill, M.P., Coetzee, J.A., Weaver, K.N. and Hill J.M. 2018. Synergies between research organisations and the wider community in enhancing weed biological control in South Africa. BioControl, 63: 437 - 447.

Maseko, Z., Coetzee, J.A. and Hill, M.P. 2018. The effect of shade and eutrophication on the biological control of Salvinia molesta by the weevil, Cyrtobagous salviniae. Austral Entomology.

Mvandaba, S.F., Coetzee, J.A., Owen, C.A. and Hill, M.P. 2018. The thermal physiology of Stenopelmus rufinasus and Neohydronomus affinis (Coleoptera: Curculionidae), two biological control agents for the invasive alien aquatic weeds, Azolla filiculoides and Pistia stratiotes in South Africa. Biocontrol Science and Technology. DOI: 10.1080/09583157.2018.1525484

Nepgen, E. Moore, S.D. and Hill, M.P. 2018. Integrating chemical control with sterile insect releases in an IPM programme for Thaumatotibia leucotreta. Journal of Applied Entomology 142: 421-427.

Strange, E.F., Hill, J.M. and Coetzee, J.A. 2018. Evidence for a new regime shift between floating and submerged invasive plant dominance in South Africa. Hydrobiologia 817: 349.

Uyi, O.O., Zachariades, C., Heshula, L.U. and Hill, M.P. 2018. Development and reproductive performance of a specialist herbivore depend on seasonality of, and light conditions experienced by the host plant. PLoS ONE 13(1):e0190700.

Book Chapters

Hill, M.P. and Coetzee, J.A. 2017. Chapter 7. Biological Control of Waterhyacinth Restores Ecosystem Functioning To An Impoundment In South Africa In: (Eds) van Driesche, and Reardon, R.C. Supressing Over-abundant Invasive Plants and Insects in Natural Areas by Use of Their Specialiazed Natural Enemies.  The Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team (FHTET), FHTET-2017-02.  pp 48-52. 

Last Modified: Thu, 16 Apr 2020 14:41:43 SAST