Ariel Leib Leonid (Laibale) Friedman
Collection manager of Coleoptera and Odonata, the Steinhardt Museum
Ariel Leib Leonid (Laibale) Friedman is a collection manager of Coleoptera and Odonata at the Steinhardt Museum. Laibale was born in Borisov, Minsk district, Belarus, and lived in Minsk until he was 16 years old. When he arrived in Israel in 1990, he already considered himself an experienced entomologist. Animals in general and insects in particular were always his main interest. He started his own entomological collection before his first grade, and Israeli insects were added to it on the first day of his arrival in the country. He received his BSc in Biology from Bar Ilan University, and his MSc in Ecology and Environmental Studies from Tel Aviv University in 1999. His main interests are taxonomy, systematics and faunistics of weevils (Coleoptera: Curculionoidea).
To date, Laibale has described 20 new species and 4 new genera of weevils and leaf beetles, and continues to survey different groups of these beetles in the field. He published several identification keys for Israeli beetles: four small weevil families (Apionidae, Attelabidae, Rhynchitidae and Brachyceridae), part of the large “true weevils” family Curculionidae (Anthonomini, Hipporhinini, Sitonini, Smicronychini), aquatic and semiaquatic weevils, the leaf-beetle subfamily Chrysomelinae, flat bark beetles (Silvanidae), and was involved in preparation of keys to Israeli ground beetles (Carabidae) and tiger beetles (Cicindelidae). Laibale participated in numerous collecting trips around Israel and in a few entomological expeditions to Cyprus, Greece, Turkey, Egypt (Sinai), Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, South Africa, Madagascar and Papua New Guinea. His current research focuses on the survey of several groups of weevils in Israel (Anthribidae, Nanophyidae, Baridinae, Entiminae, Hyperinae, Cyclominae), study of Palaearctic and Afrotropical Brachyceridae, Tropical Apionidae and Nanophyidae, preparation of the Red Book of beetles in Israel and on the history of entomological research in Israel. He has authored or co-authored approximately 50 scientific articles.