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Maxwell Helmberger

Advisor: Dr. Kyle Wickings

Research Interests

I am interested in population and community ecology, primarily of insects and other invertebrates within the soil. The cryptic nature of the soil environment and the small size of many soil organisms mean that even basic ecological interactions are difficult to study. As such, soil can be difficult to manage and manipulate to ensure proper deliver of ecosystem services. My thesis research will focus on the potential of soil microarthropods such as mites and springtails to reduce the biological control efficacy of entomopathogenic nematodes through predation, and how soil biotic and abiotic factors affect predation rates.