Extreme close up of ant army

Integrative Ecology Lab

Examining what drives the ecology of animals and plants
We bridge the divides between different approaches to doing ecology – integrating behaviour and physiology with patterns and processes at community and landscape scales.
View of native habitat with view of Sydney Harbour

Our aims

Our work focuses on the ecology of terrestrial arthropods and their interactions with plants. We are currently working on a diverse range of research questions related to both community ecology and landscape ecology.

Our projects ideally include an experimental component, feature arthropods as main the study taxa, and are situated in the terrestrial environment.

Our research

Our people

  • Associate Professor Dieter Hochuli, Lead
  • Dr Helen Smith, Research Associate
  • Dr Caragh Threlfall, research Associate
  • Dr Oisin Sweeney, Sydney Policy Lab fellow
  • Margot Law, Research assistant
  • Joanna Haddock, PhD candidate
  • Matthew Hall, PhD candidate
  • Jayne Hanford, PhD candidate
  • Ryan Keith, PhD candidate
  • Casey Taylor, PhD candidate
  • Caitlyn Drayton-Taylor, PhD candidate
  • Daniel Jin, PhD candidate
  • Manuel Eduardo Lequerica Tamara, PhD Candidate
  • Ryan Leonard, PhD candidate (under examination)
  • Henry Lydecker, PhD Candidate (under examination)
  • Lucy Taylor, PhD candidate (under examination)

From the School of Life and Environmental Sciences at the University of Sydney:

From the University of Sydney:

Key external collaborators:

  • Dr Caragh Threlfall (The University of Melbourne)
  • Associate Professor Stephen Livesley (The University of Melbourne)
  • Dr John Martin (Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney)
  • Dr Alicia Burns (Taronga Zoo)
  • Dr Dave Kendal (The University of Tasmania)
  • Professor Lisa Given (Swinburne University of Technology)
  • Dr Brad Law (Department of Primary Industries)


We strive to maintain an active and friendly atmosphere in the lab. This includes encouraging an inclusive approach to involvement with each other's projects to gain the breadth of experiences and develop the range of skills you need to succeed in biology. I strongly encourage any prospective lab members to contact any of the group and learn of life in the lab, my expectations and my idiosyncrasies. 

I'm interested in discussing ideas for projects that may fall outside my specific research areas, but the work we do is usually ecologically based. Projects should ideally have an experimental component, feature arthropods as main the study taxa, and are situated in the terrestrial environment. The research interests and current projects pages are a good indication of the sorts of projects I am keen to pursue.

For information about opportunities look at my Research Supervisor Connect page.

Dieter Hochuli

  • +61 2 9351 4119
  • Room 401 Heydon-Laurence Building (A08) The University of Sydney, NSW, 2006