Mathieu Laparie

INRAE URZF (Forest Zoology Research Unit), Orléans, France

My re­search in­ter­ests lie in the re­la­tion­ship bet­ween the du­rable suc­cess of in­va­sive or range expanding insects and the way they fit to the no­vel se­lec­tion regimes en­coun­te­red as they ex­pand and/or dis­turb co­lo­ni­zed ha­bi­tats, as well as the fa­ci­li­ta­ting ef­fects of cli­mate change. Such ad­just­ments re­sult from plas­tic and evo­lu­tio­na­ry changes, which I in­ves­ti­gate using both field and ex­pe­ri­men­tal ap­proaches (main­ly tools in eco­phy­sio­lo­gy, me­ta­bo­lo­mics and mor­pho­me­trics). I aim to ad­dress ques­tions such as:

  • how does the process of range ex­pan­sion drive to evo­lu­tio­na­ry changes and syn­dromes?
  • what is the role of plas­ti­ci­ty (phy­sio­lo­gi­cal, tro­phic, etc.) in the co­lo­ni­za­tion of new en­vi­ron­ments?
  • do in­va­ders and native range expanders have scope to per­sist over the long term des­pite the eco­lo­gi­cal per­tur­ba­tions in­du­ced by their own re­si­dence?

I started my research by studying how invasive and endemic insects deal with the bad but rapidly changing conditions in the sub-Antarctic islands. I then moved to Forest Entomology and started working on the northward expansions of insects such as the winter-active pine processionary moth (Thaumetopoea pityocampa) across Europe, and the winter moth (Operophtera brumata) in northern Fennoscandia. I am also interested in alien invasive species succeeding in new habitats despite new ecological challenges, such as the Asian longhorned beetle (Anoplophora glabripennis) and the box tree moth (Cydalima perspectalis).