György Kriska, habil. PhD

kriska.gyorgy [at] okologia.mta.hu
+36 27 345-023
Brief description of the main scopes: 

György Kriska (30 July 1964, Vác, Hungary) is a senior researcher at Danube Research Institute, Centre for Ecological Research, Hungarian Academy of Sciences and assistant professor at Eötvös University in Budapest, Hungary. He has taught methodology in biology teaching and freshwater invertebrate identification for more than 20 years. He received his Ph.D. in biology from the Eötvös University, Budapest, in 2000. He has published numerous research papers in visual ecology, in addition to authoring a Springer monograph: Freshwater Invertebrates in Central Europe. His research interest is polarised light pollution and polarisation ecological traps.

Education:

2011 - Univ. Habil., Eötvös Loránd University (Budapest); No.: 719/2011, Reg.No.: F180798;
2000 – PhD (Biology), Eötvös Loránd University (Budapest), No.: P299/2000;
1983 - 1988 secondary school teacher of biology and chemistry, Eötvös Loránd University (Budapest), No.: 1037/1988, Reg.No.: IV-29/1983-84;
1978 - 1982 Madách Imre High School (Budapest), final examination;

Appointments:

2011 - senior researcher, Danube Research Institute, Centre for Ecological Research, Hungarian Academy of Sciences (Vácrátót);
1991 - assistant professor, Group for Methodology in Biology Teaching, Biological Institute, Loránd Eötvös University (Budapest);
1988 - 1991 teacher, Babits Mihály High School (Budapest);

Research Description:

[1] Polarized light pollution and polarization ecological traps
Ecological photopollution (EPP) has been defined as the degradation of the photic habitat by artificial light. We introduced a new term, the polarized light pollution (PLP), meaning all adverse effects on polarotactic aquatic insects attracted by horizontally polarized light reflected from artificial surfaces. PLP is a new kind of EPP, it is global and novel in an evolutionary sense. In numerous choice experiments with polarotactic insects and using imaging polarimetry we gave experimental evidence of PLP, such as (1) trapping of aquatic insects by dark oil surfaces; (2) dehydration of polarotactic insects attracted to black plastic sheets used in agriculture; (3) egg-laying of polarotactic mayflies onto dry asphalt roads; (4) attraction of aquatic insects to black, red or dark-coloured car paintwork; (5) deception of polarotactic dragonflies by shiny black gravestones; (6) attraction of mass-swarming polarotactic caddis flies to glass surfaces. All such highly and horizontally polarizing artificial surfaces can act as polarized ecological traps for polarotactic insects, because these surfaces are inappropriate for the development of eggs laid by the deceived insects. The mortality associated with PLP may threaten populations of endangered aquatic insect species. We pointed onto some possible benefits and/or disadvantages of predators (spiders, birds, bats) feeding on the polarotactic insects attracted to different sources of PLP. We also suggested several remedies of PLP, which is a byproduct of the human architectural, building, industrial and agricultural technology, and it may allow to function feeding webs composed of polarotactic insects and their predators. We emphasized that conservation planners should pay much more attention to aquatic insects because of their positive polarotaxis and their demonstrated vulnerability due to PLP.

[2] Polarization tabanid traps - TabaNOid technology
To know how tabanid flies locate their host animals, terrestrial rendezvous sites and egg-laying places would be very useful for control measures against them, because the haematophagous tabanid females are vectors of some severe animal/human diseases/parasites. In choice experiments we discovered that both males and females of several tabanid species have positive polarotaxis, i.e. they are attracted to horizontally polarized light stimulating their ventral eye region. The novelty of this is that polarotaxis has been described earlier only in connection with the water detection of aquatic insects ovipositing directly into water. A further particularity of our discovery is that in the order Diptera and among blood-sucking insects the studied tabanids are the first known species possessing ventral polarization vision and definite polarization-sensitive behaviour with known functions. The polarotaxis in tabanids makes it possible to develop new optically luring traps being more efficient than the existing ones. The development of our patented protective system, called TabaNOid, against tabanids for eco-farms, graziers and race-horse breeders is in progress.

Research topics (principal investigator, participant)

[1] 2007-2011 principal investigator: Direct and indirect polarotaxis in caddis flies and true flies", Hungarian Science Foundation (OTKA K-68462)
[2] 2009-2011 participant: EU 7. TabaNOid: Trap for the Novel Control of Horse-flies on Open-air Fields. No. 232366, Research for the Benefit of Small and Medium Enterprises, 265.000 EUR)

Decorations:

[1] 1997 Hundidac Gold Prize by: Ministry of Education and Hundidac Society Achievement: Life of wetlands I. – film (70 min.) – ELTE
[2] 1997 Hundidac Bronze Prize by: Ministry of Education and Hundidac Society Achievement: Three-dimensional visual aid
[3] 1999 Hundidac Gold Prize by: Ministry of Education and Hundidac Society Achievement: Life of wetlands II. – film (70 min.) – ELTE
[4] 2001 Hundidac Gold Prize by: Ministry of Education and Hundidac Society Achievement: Újpest and the surrounding area's natural values – film (60 min.) – Ocean TV
[5] 2009 Researcher of the Month (January 2009) by: Hungarian Science Fund Achievement: Polarized light pollution, polarization insect traps
[6] 2011 Innovative Researcher of the Year 2010 of the Eötvös University by: Eötvös Loránd University Achievement: Polarization insect traps, Reduction of polarized light pollution (2 Hungarian patents)
[7] 2013 Master Teacher Gold Medal by: National Scientific Student Council Achievement: talent management

Role in scientific community:

[1] 2006 - Member of the Hungarian Biological Society: Didactical Department
[2] 2007 - Instructor and dissertation supervisor of SzIE Doctoral School of Environmental Sciences
[3] 2007 - Member of the Hungarian Biological Society: Zoology Department
[4] 2007 - Member of the Hungarian Hydrological Society
[5] 2007 - Member of the National Scientific Student Council, Comittee of Education Methodology and Technology
[6] 2008 - 'The teaching of biology - methodology journal', member of the editorial board
[7] 2013 - Member of the adhoc comittee of HAS

Miscellaneous

Appearance in Nature and Science
NATURE

Ádám EGRI, Ákos HORVÁTH, György KRISKA, Gábor HORVÁTH (2010) Optics of sunlit water drops on leaves: Conditions under which sunburn is possible. New Phytologist 185: 979-987 + cover picture
Reviewed in:
Nature Photonics - volume 4, number 3, page 128 (1 March 2010) Research Highlights - Environmental Optics: Sunburn myth dispelled
--------------------
Gábor HORVÁTH, Miklós BLAHÓ, György KRISKA, Ramón HEGEDÜS, Balázs GERICS, Róbert FARKAS, Susanne AKESSON (2010) An unexpected advantage of whiteness in horses: The most horsefly-proof horse has a depolarizing white coat. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 277: 1643-1650
Reviewed in:
Nature - volume 463, number 7283, page 852 (18 February 2010) Research Highlights - Ecology: Why horses wear white
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György KRISKA, Gábor HORVÁTH, Sándor ANDRIKOVICS (1998) Why do mayflies lay their eggs en masse on dry asphalt roads? Water-imitating polarized light reflected from asphalt attracts Ephemeroptera. Journal of Experimental Biology 201: 2273-2286
Reviewed in:
Nature - volume 394, page 425 (30 July 1998) by Alison Mitchell: News and Views - Ecology: Polarized flight.
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SCIENCE
Ádám EGRI, Miklós BLAHÓ, György KRISKA, Róbert FARKAS, Mónika GYURKOVSZKY, Susanne AKESSON, Gábor HORVÁTH (2012) Polarotactic tabanids find striped patterns with brightness and/or polarization modulation least attractive: an advantage of zebra stripes. Journal of Experimental Biology 215 (5): 736-745 + electronic supplement
Reviewed in:
Science - Jane J. Lee: Mystery of zebra's stripes finally solved?
http://news.sciencemag.org/2012/02/mystery-zebras-stripes-finally-solved
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Gábor HORVÁTH, György KRISKA, Péter MALIK, Bruce ROBERTSON (2009) Polarized light pollution: a new kind of ecological photopollution. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 7: 317-325
Reviewed in:
Science - 7 January 2009 - Phil Berardelli: When a building is like a pond
http://sciencenow.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/2009/107/2
Science Podcast - Transcript 9 January 2009
http://podcasts.aaas.org/science_podcast/SciencePodcast_090109.mp3
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Kriska, G.; Csabai, Z.; Boda, P.; Malik P.; Horváth, G. (2006) Why do red and dark-coloured cars lure aquatic insects? The attraction of water insects to car paintwork explained by reflection-polarization signals. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 273: 1667-1671
Reviewed in:
Science - volume 313, number 5783, issue 7, page 25 (July 2006) Random Samples: Great moments in entomology.

Main profile in keywords: 
freshwater invertebrates, visual ecology, polarisation vision, ecological traps
Projects - leader at MTA ÖK:
Projects - participant:
2007 Direct and indirect polarotaxis in caddis flies and true flies (OTKA K 68462 - György Kriska, habil. PhD)
Selected publications: 

2015

Száz, D., Horváth, G., Barta, A., Robertson, B. A., Farkas, A., Egri, Á., Tarjányi, N., Rácz, G., Kriska, Gy. (2015): Lamp-lit bridges as dual light-traps for the night-swarming mayfly, Ephoron virgo: Interaction of polarized and unpolarized light pollution. PLoS ONE 01/2015; 10(3):e0121194. More ››

2014

Blahó M., Herczeg T., Kriska Gy., Egri Á., Száz D., Farkas A., Tarjányi N., Czinke L., Barta A., Horváth G. (2014): Unexpected attraction of polarotactic water-leaving insects to matt black car surfaces: mattness of paintwork cannot eliminate the polarized light pollution of black cars. Public Library of Science ONE (PLoS ONE) 9 (7): e103339 + electronic supplement More ››
Herczeg T., Blahó M., Száz D., Kriska Gy., Gyurkovszky M., Farkas R., Horváth G. (2014): Seasonality and daily activity of male and female tabanid flies monitored in a Hungarian hill-country pasture by new polarization traps and traditional canopy traps. Parasitology Research 113 (11): pp. 4251-4260. More ››

2013

Bernáth B., Blahó M., Egri Á, Barta A., Kriska G., Horváth G. (2013): Orientation with a Viking sun-compass, a shadow-stick, and two calcite sunstones under various weather conditions Applied Optics 52: pp. 6185-6194 More ››
Egri Á., Blahó M., Száz D., Barta A., Kriska G., Antoni G., Horváth G. (2013): A new tabanid trap applying a modified concept of the old flypaper: Linearly polarizing sticky black surfaces as an effective tool to catch polarotactic horseflies International Journal for Parasitology 43: pp. 555-563 More ››
Egri Á., Blahó M., Száz D., Kriska G., Majer J., Herczeg T., Gyurkovszky M., Farkas R., Horváth G. (2013): A horizontally polarizing liquid trap enhances the tabanid-capturing efficiency of the classic canopy trap Bulletin of Entomological Research 103: pp. 665-674 More ››
Kriska Gy. (2013): Freshwater Invertebrates in Central Europe - A Field Guide Springer–Verlag, Wien – Heidelberg – New York – Dordrecht – London (ISBN 978-3-7091-1546-6), p. 411 More ››

2012

Blahó M, Egri Á, Báhidszki L, Kriska Gy, Hegedüs R, Akesson S, Horváth G (2012): Spottier targets are less attractive to tabanid flies: on the tabanid-repellency of spotty fur patterns. Public Library of Science ONE (PLoS ONE) 7(8): pp. e41138. + supporting information More ››
Blahó M, Egri Á, Barta A, Kriska G., Antoni G, Horváth G. (2012): How can horseflies be captured by solar panels? A new concept of tabanid traps using light polarization and electricity produced by photovoltaics. Veterinary Parasitology 189: pp. 353-365. More ››
Blahó M, Egri Á, Hegedüs R, Jósvai J, Tóth M, Kertész K, Bíró L P, Kriska Gy, Horváth G. (2012): No evidence for behavioral responses to circularly polarized light in four scarab beetle species with circularly polarizing exocuticle. Physiology and Behavior 105: pp. 1067-1075. More ››
Egri Á, Blahó M, Kriska Gy, Farkas R, Gyurkovszky M, Åkesson S, Horváth G. (2012): Polarotactic tabanids find striped patterns with brightness and/or polarization modulation least attractive: An advantage of zebra stripes. Journal of Experimental Biology 215: 736-745. + electronic supplement More ››
Egri Á, Blahó M, Sándor A, Kriska Gy, Gyurkovszky M, Farkas R, Horváth G. (2012): New kind of polarotaxis governed by degree of polarization: attraction of tabanid flies to differently polarizing host animals and water surfaces. Naturwissenschaften 99: pp. 407-416. More ››
Horváth G, Farkas E, Boncz I, Blahó M, Kriska, G. (2012): Were cavemen better at representing realism of walking quadrupeds than modern artists? Erroneous walking illustrations in the fine arts from prehistory to today. Public Library of Science ONE (PLoS ONE) 7(12): pp. e49786. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0049786 + supporting information More ››

2011

Horváth G, Móra A, Bernáth B, Kriska Gy. (2011): Polarotaxis in non-biting midges: female chironomids are attracted to horizontally polarized light. Physiology and Behavior 104: pp. 1010-1015. + cover picture More ››
Málnás K, Polyák L, Prill É, Hegedüs R, Kriska Gy, Dévai Gy, Horváth G, Lengyel Sz. (2011): Bridges as optical barriers and population disruptors for the mayfly Palingenia longicauda: an overlooked threat to freshwater biodiversity? Journal of Insect Conservation 15: pp. 823-832. More ››

2010

Egri Á, Horváth Á, Kriska Gy, Horváth G. (2010): Optics of sunlit water drops on leaves: conditions under which sunburn is possible. New Phytologist 185: pp. 979–987. + cover picture More ››
Horváth G, Blahó M, Egri Á, Kriska Gy, Seres I, Robertson B. (2010): Reducing the maladaptive attractiveness of solar panels to polarotactic insects. Conservation Biology 24: pp. 1644-1653. + electronic supplement More ››
Horváth G, Blahó M, Kriska Gy, Hegedüs R, Gerics B, Farkas R, Susanne A. (2010): An unexpected advantage of whiteness in horses: The most horsefly–proof horse has a depolarizing white coat. Proceedings B of the Royal Society 277: pp. 1643-1650. More ››
Molnár Á, Hegedüs R, Kriska Gy, Horváth G. (2010): Effect of cattail (Typha spp.) mowing on water beetle assemblages: changes of environmental factors and the aerial colonization of aquatic habitats. Journal of Insect Conservation 15: pp. 389-399. More ››
Robertson B, Kriska Gy, Horváth V, Horváth G. (2010): Glass building as bird feeders: urban birds exploit insects trapped by polarized light pollution. Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae 56(3): pp. 283-293. More ››

2009

Horváth G, Csapó A, Nyeste A, Gerics B, Csorba G, Kriska Gy. (2009): Erroneous quadruped walking depictions in natural history museums. Current Biology 19(2): pp. 61–62. More ››
Horváth G, Kriska Gy, Malik P, Robertson B. (2009): Polarized Light Pollution: A New Kind of Ecological Photopollution. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 7(6): pp. 317–325. More ››
Kriska Gy, Bernáth B, Farkas R, Horváth G. (2009): Degrees of polarization of reflected light eliciting polarotaxis in dragonflies (Odonata), mayflies (Ephemeroptera) and tabanid flies (Tabanidae). Journal of Insects Physiology 55: pp. 1167–1173. More ››

2008

Bernáth B, Kriska Gy, Suhai B, Horváth G. (2008): Insectivorous birds as insect indicators on plastic sheets attracting polarotactic aquatic insects. Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae 54(1): pp. 145–155. More ››
Horváth G, Majer J, Horváth L, Szivák I, Kriska Gy. (2008): Ventral polarization vision in tabanids: horseflies and deerflies (Diptera: Tabanidae) are attracted to horizontally polarized light. Naturwissenschaften 95: pp. 1093–1100. More ››
Kriska Gy, Barta A, Suhai B, Bernáth B, Horváth G. (2008): Do brown pelicans mistake asphalt roads for water in deserts? Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae 54(1): pp. 157–165. More ››
Kriska Gy, Malik P, Szivák I, Horváth G. (2008): Glass buildings on river banks as 'polarized light traps' for mass–swarming polarotactic caddis flies. Naturwissenschaften 95: pp. 461–467. More ››
Malik P, Hegedüs R, Kriska Gy, Horváth G. (2008): Imaging polarimetry of glass buildings: why do verticalglass surfaces attract polarotactic insects? Applied Optics 47(24): pp. 4361–4374. + cover picture More ››
Sipöcz B, Hegedüs R, Kriska Gy, Horváth G. (2008): Spatiotemporal change of sky polarization during the total solar eclipse on 29 March 2006 in Turkey: polarization patterns of the eclipse sky observed by full–sky imaging polarimetry. Applied Optics 47(34): pp. 1–10. More ››

2007

Horváth G, Malik P, Kriska Gy, Wildermuth H. (2007): Ecological traps for dragonflies in a cemetery: attraction of Sympetrum species (Odonata: Libellulidae) by horizontally polarizing black gravestones. Freshwater Biology 52: pp. 1700–1709. More ››
Kriska Gy, Bernáth B, Horváth G. (2007): Polarotaxis in a mayfly that needs not search for water: polarotactic water detection in Palingenia longicauda (Ephemeroptera). Naturwissenschaften 94: pp. 148–154. More ››

2006

Csabai Z, Boda P, Bernáth B, Kriska Gy, Horváth G. (2006): A ‘polarisation sun–dial’ dictates the optimal time of day for dispersal by flying aquatic insects. Freshwater Biology 51: pp. 1341–1350. More ››
Kriska Gy, Csabai Z, Boda P, Malik P, Horváth G. (2006): Why do red and dark–coloured cars lure aquatic insects? The attraction of water insects to car paintwork explained by reflection–polarization signals. Proceedings B of the Royal Society 273: pp. 1667–1671. More ››
Kriska Gy, Malik P, Csabai Z, Horváth G. (2006): Why do highly polarizing black burnt–up stubble–fields not attract aquatic insects? An exception proving the rule. Vision Research 46: pp. 4382–4386. More ››

2001

Mizera F, Bernáth B, Kriska Gy, Horváth G. (2001): Stereo Videopolarimetry: Measuring and Visualizing Polarization Patterns in Three Dimensions. Journal of Imaging Science and Technology 45(4): pp. 393–399 More ››

1998

Kriska Gy, Horváth G, Andrikovics S (1998): Why do mayflies lay their eggs en masse on dry asphalt roads? Water–imitating polarized light reflected from asphalt attracts Ephemeroptera. Journal of Experimental Biology 200: 2273–2286. More ››