Ant ecology & adaptive strategies
A) Understanding how anthropogenic disturbance influences patterns of species community composition is important if we are to mitigate threats to biodiversity. This requires us not only to understand which species are more susceptible to change but also how alteration to species assemblages has cascading effects on community interactive processes between species, such as competition.
Supervising Masters student Ross Gray and in collaboration with Prof Rob Ewers we looked at how the disturbance of lowland dipterocarp rainforest forest in Borneo alters the ant species assemblages, and how this might lead to alterations in the competitive interactions between ant groups.
B) Ongoing project: How does temperature mediate the effect that ant colony size has on the level of functional role(s) in the environment ... more to come.