Peru State College
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Dr. Mike Barger
Dr. Barger with small Crocodile

Contact Information:

Office: Hoyt 311

Office Phone: (402) 872-2326



Office Hours:

Mon & Wed: 8 - 9 am & 4 - 5 pm

Tues & Thurs: 10 - 11 am





14 Fall Course Offerings:

Biol 355 (sections 000A & 000B) - Wildlife Techniques & Lab

Biol 490 (sections 000B ) - Undergraduate Research Thesis

Esci 230 (sections 000A & 000B) - Limnology & Lab


15 Spring Course Offerings:

Biol 317 (section 000A & 000B) - Ecology & Lab

Biol 414 (section 000A) - Internship in Wildlife Management

HP 305 (section 000A) - Microscopic Monarchs: Disease



My research focuses on population and community ecology of parasitic helminths (worms) in freshwater fishes, turtles, small mammals, and terrestrial snails. I have ongoing projects on: 1) the community ecology of endohelminths in the fishes of streams in southeastern Nebraska; 2) biodiversity survey and inventory of parasites of fishes, amphibians, and reptiles in the Big Thicket National Preserve in Texas; 3) population biology of trematode (fluke) parasites of small mammals and terrestrial snails; and 4) the biology, taxonomy, and ecology of acanthocephalan (thorny-headed worms) parasites of fishes and turtles. My research ranges from species discovery and description through traditional ecology to landscape ecology. I am particularly interested in how parasite life cycles function in real space and habitats, how host specificity and landscape features interact to govern parasite community structure, and in the population ecology of acanthocephalans and trematodes. Undergraduate research is a key component of my research program, and my goal is to train students who will pursue graduate education in biology and its allied disciplines.



  • Barger, M.A. 2012. Lifespan of Cercariae of Postharmostomum helicis (Trematoda: Brachylaimidae) Under Different Temperatures and Relative Humidity. Comparative Parasitology 79: 169-172.
  • Barger, M.A. 2012. Redescription of Polylekithum catahoulensis (Trematoda) and anatomical differentiation from Polylekithum ictaluri. Comparative Parasitology 79: 143-146.
  • Barger, M.A. 2011. Tests of ecological equivalence of two species of terrestrial gastropods as second intermediate hosts of Panopistus pricei (Trematoda: Brachylaimidae). Journal of Parasitology 97: 8-13.
  • Barger, M.A. 2011. Microhabitat use of Panopistus pricei and Brachylaima thompsoni in terrestrial gastropods in southeastern Nebraska, U.S.A. Comparative Parasitology 78: 185-187.
  • Barger, M.A. 2010. A new species of Caecincola (Trematoda: Cryptogonimidae) from spotted bass (Micropterus punctulatus) in the Big Thicket National Preserve, Texas, U.S.A. Comparative Parasitology 77: 6-8.
  • Barger, M.A. 2010. A new species of Lissorchis (Trematoda: Lissorchiidae) from creek chubsuckers (Erimyzon oblongus) in the Big Thicket National Preserve, Texas, U.S.A. Comparative Parasitology 77: 1-5.
  • Barger, M.A., and J. Hnida. 2008. Survey of trematodes from terrestrial gastropods and small mammals in southeastern Nebraska, U.S.A. Comparative Parasitology 75: 308-314.
  • McAllister, C. T., M. A. Barger, and J. N. Stuart. 2008. Neoechinorhynchus emyditoides Fisher, 1960 (Acanthocephala: Neoechinorhynchidae) from the Mexican Plateau Slider, Trachemys gaigeae (Testudines: Emydidae), in west central New Mexico, U.S.A. Comparative Parasitology 75: 135-137.
  • Barger, M.A. 2007. Congruence of endohelminth community similarity in creek chub (Semotilus atromaculatus) with drainage structure in southeastern Nebraska. Comparative Parasitology 74: 185-193.
  • *Robinson, H.A., and M.A. Barger. 2007. Microhabitat specificity of Paulisentis missouriensis (Acanthocephala: Neoechinorhynchidae) in creek chub (Semotilus atromaculatus) in southeastern. Nebraska. Comparative Parasitology 74: 355-358.
  • Richardson, D.J., and M.A. Barger. 2006. Redescription of Oligacanthorhynchus major (Machado Filho, 1963) Schmidt, 1972 (Acanthocephala: Oligacanthorhynchidae) from the white-lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari) in Bolivia. Comparative Parasitology 73: 157-160.
  • Barger, M.A. 2006. Spatial heterogeneity in the parasite communities of creek chub (Semotilus atromaculatus) in southeastern Nebraska. Journal of Parasitology 92: 230-235.
  • Richardson, D.J., and M.A. Barger. 2005. Microhabitat specificity of Macracanthorhynchus ingens in the raccoon (Procyon lotor). Comparative Parasitology 72: 173-178.
  • Barger, M.A. 2005. A new species of Neoechinorhynchus (Acanthocephala: Neoechinorhynchidae) from turtles in Florida. Comparative Parasitology 72: 6-9.
  • Lindeman, P.V., and M.A. Barger. 2005. Acanthocephalan (Neoechinorhynchus emydis) infections in Texas map turtles (Graptemys versa). Southwestern Naturalist 50: 12-16.
  • Barger, M.A. 2004. The Neoechinorhynchus of turtles: distribution, host use, and specimen base. Comparative Parasitology 71: 118-129.
  • Barger, M.A., and B. B. Nickol. 2004. A key to the species of Neoechinorhynchus (Acanthocephala:  Neoechinorhynchidae) from turtles. Comparative Parasitology 71: 4-8.
  • Barger, M.A., V.E. Thatcher, and B. B. Nickol. 2004. A new species of Neoechinorhynchus (Acanthocephala:  Neoechinorhynchidae) from a turtle in Mexico.  Comparative Parasitology 71: 1-3.
  • Esch, G.W., M.A. Barger, and J. Fellis. 2002. The transmission of digenetic trematodes: style, elegance, complexity. Integrative and Comparative Biology 42: 304-312.
  • Barger, M.A., and G.W. Esch. 2002. Host specificity and the distribution-abundance relationship in a community of parasites infecting fishes in streams of North Carolina. Journal of Parasitology 88: 446-453.
  • Esch, G.W., L.A. Curtis, and M.A. Barger. 2001. A perspective on the ecology of larval trematode communities. Parasitology 123: S57-75.
  • Barger, M.A., and G.W. Esch. 2001. Downstream changes in the composition of the parasite community of fishes in an Appalachian stream. Journal of Parasitology 87: 250-255.
  • Barger, M.A., and G.W. Esch. 2000. Plagioporus sinitsini: A 1-host trematode life cycle. Journal of Parasitology 86: 150-153.
  • Barger, M.A., and G.W. Esch. 1999. Allopodocotyle chiliticorum n. sp. (Digenea:  Opecoelidae) from redlip shiners, Notropis chiliticus, in Basin Creek, North Carolina. Journal of Parasitology 85: 891-892.
  • Barger, M.A., and B.B. Nickol. 1999. Effects of coinfection with Pomphorhynchus bulbocolli on development of Leptorhynchoides thecatus (Acanthocephala) in amphipods (Hyalella azteca). Journal of Parasitology 85: 60-63.
  • Barger, M.A., and B.B. Nickol. 1998. Structure of Leptorhynchoides thecatus and Pomphorhynchus bulbocolli (Acanthocephala) eggs in habitat partitioning and transmission. Journal of Parasitology 84: 534-537.
  • Barger, M.A., and J. Janovy, Jr. 1995. Host specificity of Rhabdochona canadensis (Nematoda: Rhabdochonidae) in Nebraska. Journal of Parasitology 80: 1032-1035.