- November 2023
Delta Research and Extension Center
Year in position/at MSU: one
Although Omar Martinez grew up in Colombia and spent the past two decades in Brazil, he felt at home when joining the Mississippi State University Delta Research and Extension Center (DREC) experts in Stoneville last year.
“The station offers all the necessary facilities for conducting research, and the culture and environment are exceptionally friendly,” Martinez said. “My parents are farmers, so, from the outset, this felt like home to me.”
During the initial years of his education in animal science, Martinez was introduced to the world of honey bees, which immediately captured his attention and led to a two-decade journey spanning both the academic and commercial sectors.
“The focus of DREC to generate knowledge and simplify its transmission to the community aligns perfectly with my own interests and aspirations. Working here gives me the opportunity to engage in those activities,” Martinez said.
As a postdoctoral associate, his research project, “Honey bee queen reproduction plasticity and the effect on the performance of progenies," helps improve the quality of queens and the apiculture industry. Honeybees pollinate more than 100 crops nationwide and add an estimated $18 billion in crop value, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
“I am deeply passionate about working in the field of beekeeping, and the opportunity to develop and carry out a research project aimed at addressing specific issues within the beekeeping sector represents an important goal in my professional life,” Martinez said.
In his leisure time, Martinez treasures moments spent with his wife and has plans to visit national parks. He enjoys fishing and has developed a passion for running, which not only contributes to his physical well-being but has also introduced him to the world of trail running. Whenever possible, he and his wife visit family both in Colombia and Brazil.