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To a close approximation, all animals on Earth are insects – both in terms of species numbers and biomass. To understand why insect communities are structured like they are, we need to understand how strongly different species interact with each other in time and space, how that affects their abundances, and how this is reflected in ecosystem functioning. The Spatial Foodweb Ecology Group focuses on general patterns in insect community structure across multiple sites in space and time, and on how such patterns translate into function. We are particularly interested in how insect food webs are built from first principles: how (meta)populations of multiple species interact, and how species-specific characteristics blend with interspecific interactions in shaping what insects occur where and at what abundances.