We study the ecology of plants and insects in a variable and changing world

The Wetzel Lab and The Herbivory Variability Network are recruiting a postdoctoral scholar and a data science research technicianFull job postings here. Please get in touch if you’re interested!

Our research focuses on how heterogeneity—including biological diversity and climate variability—influences interactions among plants, insect herbivores, and predators. We work in natural and agricultural ecosystems and strive to answer fundamental questions that have relevance for agricultural sustainability or global change biology. We do experiments and observational studies in the field and greenhouse and use statistical and mathematical modeling to link ecological processes and patterns across scales from individuals to communities. Our work integrates population and community ecology, plant biochemistry, and insect physiology and behavior. We also run The Herbivory Variability Network, a global collaboration that includes 200+ scientists across 35+ countries.

The Wetzel Lab strives to be a safe and supportive space for diversity in science. We fight injustice and work to make STEM and academia more inclusive, diverse, and equitable. Black lives matter!

The Wetzel Lab is in the departments of Entomology and Integrative Biology at Michigan State University. We’re part of the Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior Program and affiliated with the Kellogg Biological Station and the Plant Resilience Institute.

Recent press:

The Wetzel Lab at MSU’s Kellogg Biological station in summer 2018

We and the Weber Lab in Plant Biology run the MSU Plant–Arthropod Ecology & Evolution Group (affectionately known as PLARG), which includes members from 10+ labs across 4+ departments. We meet weekly Fall and Spring Semesters to share our research, discuss papers, and hatch new ideas about the ecology and evolution of plant–arthropod interactions. Here is the PLARG schedule.

The Wetzel Lab and friends (Bradburd, Meek, and Weber labs) at a fall potluck