DR. INOKA KARUNARATNE is a visiting Fulbright Fellow from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. She received her B.Sc. in Zoology (Honors) in 1998 from the University of Peradeniya. She did her Ph.D. in Taxonomy and Ecology of Bees of Sri Lanka. She is the pioneer in bee research in Sri Lanka and published the checklist for bees of Sri Lanka in 2005 and lodged the total collection of 138 species of bees in the Invertebrate Systematics and Diversity Facility (ISDF) in University of Peradeniya to facilitate others working on Sri Lankan bees. After receiving her Ph.D. in Entomology in 2004 she worked for two years as a graduate research associate in the Entomology Laboratory and joined the Faculty of Science, University of Peradeniya in 2007. She is a member of the Pollinator Conservation Advisory Group formed by the Ministry of Environment, Sri Lanka. In collaboration with Dr. Rhett D. Harrison, World Agroforestry Institute (ICRAF, CGIAR), China, she is working on fig pollinators of Sri Lanka.
In the FLIES Facility, Inoka is training on the fundamentals of forensic entomology with a view to initiate forensic entomology research in Sri Lanka on her return. Currently, she is investigating the impact of scavenging on blow fly communities colonizing decaying rat carcasses. This work is in collaboration with two undergraduate students (Michael Banfield and Whitney West). She is also training to identify the blow flies and carrion beetles in the insect collection of the Department of Entomology with the help of Mr. Edward Riley.