Photo of Wise, David H.

David H. Wise, PhD


Biological Sciences


Building & Room:

3476 SES


845 W. Taylor St.

Office Phone:

(312) 413-9191


My students, collaborators, and I have conducted research on the behavioral, population and community ecology of spiders; conservation biological control; restoration ecology; and the structure and dynamics of the detritus-based, arthropod-focused soil food web of deciduous forests. Building upon much of this empirical work, my research program now utilizes mathematical modeling to better understand (1) how the structure of energy channels in soil food webs affects web dynamics, (2) the impact of cannibalism on the dynamics of intra-guild predation (IGP) systems, and (3) how a physically complex substrate can alter rates of cannibalism.

Selected Publications

(Complete list of publications on Google Scholar)

  1. Heneghan, L., L. Westphal, K. Ross, C. Watkins, P. Gobster, B. Iannone III, J. Vining, M. Tudor, A. Wali, M. Zellner and D. H. Wise. 2020. Institutional diversity in restoration planning yields similar vegetation outcomes. Society & Natural Resources. Publ. on-line Dec 2019: (pp 1-19).
  2. Melguizo-Ruiz, N., G. Jiménez-Navarro, E. De Mas, J. Pato, S. Scheu, A. T. Austin, D. H. Wise and J. Moya-Laraño. 2020. Field exclusion of large soil predators impacts lower trophic levels, and decreases leaf-litter decomposition in dry forests.  Journal of Animal Ecology 89: 334-346.
  3. Wise, D. H. and J. R. Lensing2019. Impacts of rainfall extremes predicted by climate-change models on major trophic groups in the leaf-litter arthropod community.  Journal of Animal Ecology 88: 1486-1497.
  4. McCary, M. A., M. L. Zellner, and D. H. Wise.  2019.  The role of plant-mycorrhizal mutualisms in deterring plant invasions: Insights from an individual-based model. Ecology and Evolution 9: 2018-20.
  5. Lawrence, K. L. and D. H. Wise. 2017.Long-term resource addition to a detrital food web yields a pattern of responses more complex than pervasive bottom-up control.  PeerJ 5: e3572.
  6. Iannone, B. V. III, M. L. Zellner, and D. H. Wise. 2014. Modeling the impacts of life-history traits, canopy dynamics, and establishment location on woodland shrub invasions. Ecological Applications 24: 467–483.
  7. Orlando, P. A., J. S. Brown and D. H. Wise.  2012. Coexistence and community structure in a consumer resource model with explicit stoichiometry.  Theoretical Population Biology 82: 77-84.
  8. Moya-Laraño, J. and D. H. Wise. 2007. Two simple strategies of analysis to increase the power of experiments with multiple response variables. Basic and Applied Ecology 8: 398-410.
  9. Wise, D. H.  1993.  Spiders in Ecological Webs.  Cambridge Studies in Ecology, Cambridge University Press.  Cambridge (UK).  328 p. (Paperback Edition, 1995).
  10. Wise, D. H.  1989. Modelling of energy flow in forest decomposer communities (Zur Funktion der Fauna in einem Mullbuchenwald 19). Verhandlungen der Gesellschaft für Ökologie 17: 327-340.


PhD, University of Michigan

MS, University of Michigan

BA, Swarthmore College

Selected Presentations

Wise, D. H.2019. “Trophic interactions in the leaf-litter community: Insights from mesocosm experiments in North American deciduous forests,” Research Training Group in the Enrichment of European Beech Forests with Conifers, Georg-August-Universität, Göttingen, Germany.

Wise, D. H. 2019.  “Analysis of ecological field experiments with the new statistics,” Animal Ecology Working Group, Georg-August-Universität, Göttingen, Germany.

Wise, D. H.2017. “The strength of top-down and bottom-up control processes in the soil food web: Insights from field experiments,” Second Weaver Symposium, Estación Experimental de Zonas Áridas (CSIC) and Universidad de Almería, Spain.

Wise, D. H.,K. L. Lawrence, and J. R. Lensing.  2014. “Impacts of global climate change on the leaf-litter arthropod community:  Effects of altered detrital input and rainfall extremes in two long term field experiments in a deciduous forest,” Symposium on Assessing the Pressures and Threats: Impacts of Global Change on Soil Communities, Ecosystem Functioning and Ecosystem Services, First Global Soil Biodiversity Conference, Dijon, France.