Dr. Jernej Polajnar

Working place: Research Associate

Telephone number: +386 (0)59 23 27 80
Department: Department of Organisms and Ecosystems Research


  • 1999–2006: Masters study program: Biology. Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubljana
  • 2009–2013: Graduate program (PhD): Biosciences. Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubljana

Employment and titles:

  • 2007–2010, 2012–2013: Department of Entomology, National Institute of Biology, Ljubljana. Junior Developer, 2010-05-11 elected Assistant.
  • 2013–2015: Centro Ricerca e Innovazione, Fondazione Edmund Mach, San Michele all'Adige (TN), Italy. Post-doc researcher.
  • from 2015: Department of Organisms and Ecosystems Research, National Institute of Biology, Ljubljana. Research Assistant, 2017-01-25 elected Research Associate.

Research activity:

During undergraduate and graduate studies at the then Department of Entomology (NIB), I worked on vibrational communication of insects, with focus on the influence of biotic and abiotic factors on courtship behaviour in the southern green stink-bug (Nezara viridula).

After obtaining my doctorate, I was working at the Fondazione Edmund Mach (Italy) between 2013 and 2015, developing a method for mating disruption of the American grapevine leafhopper (Scaphoideus titanus) by playback of vibrational noise, and later researching vibrational communication of the invasive brown marmorated stink-bug (Halyomorpha halys).

My current work focuses on the topic of behavioural ecology of Aphrodes leafhoppers, but I continue to be involved in research on the use of vibrations in biorational pest control.

Selected publications:

  • Prešern J., Polajnar J., De Groot M., Zorović M., Virant-Doberlet M. (2018). On the spot: utilization of directional cues in vibrational communication of a stink bug. Scientific Reports 8: 5418. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-018-23710-x.
  • Mazzoni V., Polajnar J., Baldini M., Rossi Stacconi M.V., Anfora G., Guidetti R., Maistrello L. (2017). Use of substrate-borne vibrational signals to attract the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, Halyomorpha halys. Journal of Pest Science 90: 1219–1229. DOI: 10.1007/s10340-017-0862-z.
  • Polajnar J., Maistrello L., Bertarella A., Mazzoni V. (2016). Vibrational communication of the brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha halys). Physiological Entomology 41(3): 249–259. DOI: 10.1111/phen.12150.
  • Polajnar J., Eriksson A., Virant-Doberlet M., Mazzoni V. (2016). Mating disruption of a grapevine pest using mechanical vibrations: from laboratory to the field. Journal of Pest Science 89: 909–921. DOI: 10.1007/s10340-015-0726-3.
  • Polajnar J., Eriksson A., Lucchi A., Anfora G., Virant-Doberlet M., Mazzoni V. (2015). Manipulating behaviour with substrate-borne vibrations – potential for insect pest control. Pest Management Science 71(1): 15–23. DOI: 10.1002/ps.3848.
  • Polajnar J., Eriksson A., Rossi Staconi M.V., Lucchi A., Anfora G., Virant-Doberlet M., Mazzoni V. (2014). The process of pair formation mediated by substrate-borne vibrations in a small insect. Behavioural Processes 107: 68–78. DOI: 10.1016/j.beproc.2014.07.013.
  • Polajnar J., Svenšek D., Čokl A. (2012). Resonance in herbaceous plant stems as a factor in vibrational communication of pentatomid bugs (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae). Journal of the Royal Society Interface 9(73): 1898–1907. DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2011.0770.
  • Virant-Doberlet M., King R.A., Polajnar J., Symondson W.O.C. (2011). Molecular diagnostics reveal spiders that exploit prey vibrational signals used in sexual communication. Molecular Ecology 20(10): 2204–2216, DOI 10.1111/j.1365-294X.2011.05038.x.
  • Polajnar J. & Čokl A. (2008). The effect of vibratory disturbance on sexual behaviour of the southern green stink bug Nezara viridula (Heteroptera, Pentatomidae). Central European Journal of Biology 3(2): 189-197. DOI: 10.2478/s11535-008-0008-7 (PDF)


  • (2016) »Excellent in Science 2016«. Slovenian Research Agency; for the review paper on the use of vibrations in pest control, published in Pest Management Science (2015).
  • (2013) »Exceptional Scientific Achievement 2012«. Slovenian Research Agency; for the paper on resonant properties of plants, published in J R Soc Interface.


Profiles on scholarly portals: SICRIS (SLO), Google Scholar, ResearchGate, Publons (review work), ORCID.

Personal bibliography (COBISS)