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Durland Fish, PhD

Professor Emeritus of Epidemiology (Microbial Diseases); Affiliated Faculty, Yale Institute for Global Health

Contact Information

Durland Fish, PhD

Office Location

Mailing Address

  • Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases

    PO Box 208034, 60 College Street

    New Haven, CT 06520-8034

    United States



Durland Fish, a native of Berwick, Pennsylvania, received his B.S. degree at Albright College in Reading, PA in 1966 with a major in biology and a minor in chemistry. Upon graduation he was employed with the Pennsylvania Department of Health as a sanitarian and in 1967 became Regional Vector Control Coordinator in charge of insect and rodent-borne diseases. His investigation of a fatal case of Rocky Mountain spotted fever in 1968 stimulated a career in public health entomology. In 1970, Fish entered the graduate program in entomology at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst where he received his M.S. in 1973. He went on to continue his graduate studies at the University of Florida where he received his Ph.D. in entomology with a minor in ecology in 1976.

Fish studied vector ecology at the University of Notre Dame with a fellowship from the National Institutes of Health. He went to New York in 1980 as Assistant Professor of Biology at Fordham University, where he taught ecology and medical entomology. In 1985, he joined the faculty at New York Medical College where he was Associate Professor in the Department of Community and Preventative Medicine and Director of the Medical Entomology Laboratory, and became Director of Lyme Disease Research Center in 1990.

He joined the faculty at Yale School of Public Health in 1994 where became Professor of Epidemiology in the Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases with a secondary appointment to Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Fish also served on the faculty of the interdisciplinary Microbiology Ph.D. Program and the Yale College Environmental Studies Program. He is founding Director of the Yale Institute of Biospheric Studies Center for EcoEpidemiology and serves on the Steering Committee of the Yale Climate and Energy Institute. His research on epidemiology and prevention of vector-borne disease has been supported by the National Institutes of Health, National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Sandia National Laboratory, New York State Dept. of Health, the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Mathers Charitable Foundation, and the American Lyme Disease Foundation. He has been awarded the honorary degrees of Doctor of Science from Albright College and Master of Arts from Yale University. He was recipient of a Mentor of the Year Award at Yale School of Public Health in 2012 and received the Hoogstraal Medal in Medical Entomology from the American Society of Tropical Medicine and hygiene in 2015.

Fish retired on July 1, 2015 and is now Professor Emeritus at Yale School of Public Health where he remains active in research, writing, and advising students.

He is a member of many professional scientific societies including the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Entomological Society of America and the Ecological Society of America. He has served as chairman of the Medical and Veterinary Entomology Section of the Entomological Society of America, president of the New York Entomological Society, and president of the International Northwestern Conference on Diseases in Nature Communicable to Man. He has also served on Executive Boards for the Society for Vector Ecology, Acarological Society of America, and the American Committee on Medical Entomology of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. He has served on Editorial Boards for Emerging Infectious Diseases and the Journal of Medical Entomology, and is Founding Editor of Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases. He has presented over 100 papers at professional meetings and has published more than 130 scientific journal articles in entomology, ecology, and medicine. His work has been featured in Time Magazine, Newsweek, Science, Science News, Audubon Magazine and the New York Times, and he has appeared on numerous television programs including NBC News, NBC Today Show, ABC Nightline, CBS This Morning, and was featured in documentaries produced by The Discovery Channel and BBC.

Education & Training

  • PhD
    University of Florida, Entomology/Ecology (1976)
  • MS
    University of Massachusetts, Entomology (1972)
  • BS
    Albright College, Biology (1966)


  • Chikungunya Outbreak in Dominica
    Dominica 2014
    Working with public health officials in Dominica to try to understand what happened, after efforts to contain the virus by isolating febrile patients from mosquitoes with bed nets so they could not infect mosquitoes, and also treating houses with insecticide to kill any mosquitoes that the patient may have already infected failed, and the epidemic moves through the Caribbean and onto the mainland.
  • Evolutionary Medicine
    Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland; Copenhagen, Capital Region, Denmark; Cambridge, England, United Kingdom; Oxford, England, United Kingdom; Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan 2011
    Program aims to establish the first world-wide research and training program in Evolutionary Medicine and to set the agenda for this rapidly developing field.

Honors & Recognition

AwardAwarding OrganizationDate
Hoogstraal Award for Excellent Achievements in Medical Entomology American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 2015
Mentor of the Year AwardYale School of Public Health2012
Honorary Master DegreeYale University2002
Honorary Doctor of ScienceAlbright College2002

Departments & Organizations