Jan Hrcek
Head of the Laboratory of Experimental Ecology
Research Associate, University of Oxford

I am interested in ecology of interactions between insects and their parasites and in processes which structure complex natural networks of these interactions. I want to build a bridge between field community ecology and typical laboratory experiments with single interactions to allow deep mechanistic understanding of complex food webs.


Mélanie Thierry
PhD student

My PhD focuses on the impact of temperature on host-parasitoid food webs, using Australian Drosophila and their parasitoids as a model system. I will investigate how host, parasitoid and endosymbiotic bacteria interactions structure the community in a climate change context using lab experiments and DNA metabarcoding methods.


Joel James Brown
PhD student

My PhD focus is on host-parasitoid food webs. I study Drosophila and their respective parasitoids along altitudinal gradients in tropical rainforests in Australia and Papua New Guinea. I will be focusing specifically on the abiotic and biotic factors that influence this community and the effects that endosymbiotic bacteria may be having, using DNA metabarcoding methods and experimental manipulations.


Martin Libra
PhD student

My main interest is in caterpillar – parasitoid interactions. I study composition of parasitoid community and parasitoid interactions with its hosts along altitudinal gradient in tropical rain forests of Papua New Guinea. I am also involved in project explaining latitudinal trends in global biodiversity of insects.


Anna Jandová
Research Assistant

My task in Jan's lab is to assist colleagues with the practical aspects of their daily research. More specifically, I would like to introduce and maintain highly efficient system of Drosophila-parasitoid breeding and provide reliable molecular data to support the research in the lab. Apart from that, as a parasitologist I'm naturally interested in Drosophila parasites.


Michaela Borovanska
Molecular Lab Manager

I am interested in insect physiology and molecular ecology. I did a PhD in insect thermal physiology and then took up lab manager role in the molecular laboratory of the Department of Ecology. There I help students and colleagues with a wide range of molecular methods including DNA barcoding and metabarcoding, detection methods and population studies.


Chris Jeffs
Visiting Postdoc

I am a postdoc investigating the effects of climate change on host-parasitoid food webs, focusing on Australian Drosophila and their parasitoids. I'm visiting Jan's lab to develop and use DNA metabarcoding to survey the focal food webs.


Owen Lewis

I am a community ecologist and conservation biologist. My interest is in the processes that maintain, structure and threaten biodiversity, particularly in highly diverse tropical forest ecosystems. The research I collaborate on with Jan's lab is focussed on the structure and dynamics of food webs involving insect herbivores and their parasitoids and on the impact of climate change on interspecific interactions.



Charles Godfray, University of Oxford: Microbial symbiosis

Alex Smith, University of Guelph: DNA barcoding

Scott Miller, Smithsonian Institution: Moth taxonomy, DNA barcoding

Donald Quicke, Chulalongkorn University, Thailand: Parasitoid taxonomy

Graham Stone, University of Edinburgh: Molecular ecology, DNA metabarcoding

Vojtech Novotny, Biology Centre CAS: Food web ecology, Papua New Guinea fieldwork

Vladimir Kostal, Biology Centre CAS: Insect physiology