Charles L. Remington
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Charles L. Remington
Charles Remington with Madagascar Hissing Roaches on his hands
Charles Remington holding Madagascar Hissing Roaches (Gromphadorhina)

Charles Lee Remington (b. 1922, d. 2007) spent his early years in Illinois, obtained his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1948, and joined the Yale University faculty immediately thereafter. He was a curator in the Yale Peabody Museum Division of Entomology and served Yale for 44 years as a professor, retiring from the Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology and the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies in 1992.

During his tenure as its first curator, Remington brought the Entomology Division’s holdings from modest beginnings into a world-class insect collection. Remington was an active mentor of entomologists and other biologists of all stripes. At Yale he helped oversee the doctoral and masters degree programs, and senior theses, for over 100 students. He was widely known and respected for his oratory skills and lectures, and taught courses in ecology, evolution, genetics, entomology and bioethics. After his retirement he taught courses that focused on population and the environment, endangered species and the biodiversity crisis.

Remington’s research focused broadly on topics in ecology, genetics and evolution, with particular emphasis on hybridization, endemism, population structure, island biology and animal introductions. He worked and published on a wide variety of arthropods and their relatives, with some favorites being Lepidoptera (especially swallowtail and sulphur butterflies), centipedes, cockroaches and cicadas, and authored an important early treatise on animal and plant hybridization.

In 1947, Remington and the late Harry Clench (Carnegie Museum, Pittsburgh) founded The Lepidopterists’ Society, the principal international organization dedicated to fostering collaborative research and exchange on butterflies and moths. He also helped found the Connecticut Entomological Society, the Xerces Society and Zero Population Growth.