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My teaching spans different fields including zoology, behavioural ecology, community ecology and statistics:

  • Since 2019 (4 terms), I co-lecture the course Arthropoda in the 2nd bachelor of Biology (, 3 credits), Ghent University. In this course, I give an overview of the taxonomy, ecology and evolution of the terrestrial groups of arthropods. My colleague Prof. M. De Troch teaches the aquatic arthropods. My theoretical lectures are spread over 10 hours. In addition, I organize practicals for this course. For my partim, students need to collect different arthropod species and then identify them using available keys. Their results are then bundled and discussed in a report. Students can ask questions to assistants and the lecturers about their identifications during 2 contact moments. 

  • 2018-2022 (5 terms), I gave every year two invited lectures on ecological networks as part of the course ‘Terrestrial Ecology” (, 3 credits), 3rd bachelor Ghent University. In these classes (3 hours), I outline the use and importance of ecological network research in modern ecology. 

  • Since 2021, I teach two invited lectures (3 hours, 3 terms) to the master students of UCL/UNamur (, 5 credits) and give an assignment. I explain the use of statistical models applied to biological research questions. 

  • I was involved in the guidance and organization of different practicals (Zoology Kuleuven, Arthropoda Ghent University) and field courses.



Twelve Bachelor and seven Master students completed their thesis under my supervision.

Currently I am supervising 3 Master projects:

Dries De Beule: ant-aphid interactions in heathland

Kobe Van Belleghem: microbiome of Messor ants and associates (together with Prof. Nicky Wybouw)

Tessa Van de Walle: endosymbionts in Myrmica ants (together with Prof. Nicky Wybouw)

I am the supervisor of the PhD of Trésor Kisimba (started 2023) on the functioning and assembly of termite communities along a recovery gradient of Miombo woodlands.


associate editor BMC Zoology


I was invited as a member of the jury for the following PhD defenses:

  • Helena Mendes Ferreira: Proximate and ultimate factors regulating reproduction and division of labour in insect societies, KU Leuven, 7/11/23

  • Chu Wang: Strumigenys ants: tiny gems in the study of exocrine gland diversity, KU Leuven, 19/6/23

  • Peihua Zhang: Plant-plant interactions mediated by soil nematodes, Ugent, 12/06/20

I was external referee for the following PhD:

  • Paride Balzani: Analysis of introduced and autochthonous populations of the red wood ant Formica paralugubris: ecological interactions and conservation issues. University of Parma, 22/01/22


I thoroughly enjoy giving seminars, advising on nature management, and participating in scientific activities aimed at reaching a wide public audience. Feel free to reach out to me. Here are some examples of previous outreach initiatives:

  • Supplying municipalities with information for the eradication of invasive ants and identifying insects, including invasive ants, provided by the public

  • Engaging with nature conservationists through regular meetings with foresters and nature managers to provide guidance on the optimal protection of red wood ants

  • Science festivals: Zeekerweten Burgerwetenschap, invited speaker: Nerdland festival '23, workshops for seconday school students, internships for high school students

  • Interviews: central guest radio show Weetikveel on ants (radio 1), radio interview on invasive ants (radio 2), Beestenboel Knack, het Nieuwsblad, initiating citizen science projects for distribution red wood ants (Biodiversa+ project)

  • Invited seminars for peers: ULB Bruxelles, UNamur, Polish Academy of Sciences, University of Córdoba

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