Insect Behavioural Ecology

We strongly support our friends and colleagues in the EU.

Our research group believes in international collaborations, and we remain committed to a strong EU, even if the UK no longer wishes to be a part of it. Collaborations between scientists, be they early-stage researchers or established PIs, break down intellectual and social barriers, and enrich us all. Dave strongly opposes leaving the EU.

We study the evolution and ecology of insect behaviour, particularly sexual and reproductive behaviour.Shuker and Simmons 2014

We are interested in how natural and sexual selection interact to shape behavioural diversity across insects. In particular, we consider how conflicting processes of selection resolve themselves into the patterns of phenotypic evolution we see around us. Our research uses theory-led whole-organism and genetic approaches, in the lab and the field, to try and understand phenotypic evolution and its ecological context.

Our work at the moment focuses on two groups of insects – parasitoid wasps and lygaeid seed-bugs – and current research includes the genetic basis of adaptive sex allocation, the evolution of polyandry, the context-dependence of reproductive decision-making, the interaction between pre- and post-copulatory sexual selection, and the links between sexual conflict over mating and reproductive interference.

If these are the sorts of questions that interest you, for theĀ latest news on available post-doc positions, PhD studentships, and undergraduate research experience, please see ourĀ opportunities page or email me at:

Dr David Shuker
Harold Mitchell Building
University of St Andrews
St Andrews
KY16 9TH
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)1334 463376
Fax: +44 (0)1334 463366