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Darren Ward

Senior Researcher - Entomologist
Darren Ward
Contact Darren

Research interests

I study the biology of insects, especially ants, bees, social and parasitoid wasps (collectively known as Hymenoptera)

My main interests are insect diversity across different landscapes, invasive species, and taxonomy.

Currently I am interested in compiling and using big datasets to answer environmental questions, and particularly using historical information from natural history collections, such as insect decline, and spatial and temporal patterns of biodiversity.


Williams HE, Brockerhoff EG, Liebhold AM, Ward DF Early Access 2021. Mechanisms driving component Allee effects during invasions: using a biological control agent as model invader. Ecological Entomology. WOS:000673498900001.

Williams HE, Brockerhoff EG, Liebhold AM, Ward DF 2021. Probing the role of propagule pressure, stochasticity, and Allee effects on invasion success using experimental introductions of a biological control agent. Ecological Entomology 46(2): 383-393. WOS:000591435400001.

Probert AF, Ward DF, Beggs JR, Bury SJ, Hermans SM, Lear G, Stanley MC 2021. High dietary niche overlap between non-native and native ant species in natural ecosystems. Environmental Entomology 50(1): 86-96. WOS:000637035600010.

Horrocks KJ, Ward D, Suckling DM 2020. Can natural enemies of current insect pests provide biotic resistance to future pests? Agricultural and Forest Entomology 22(1): 20-29. WOS:000482095700001.

Quicke DLJ, Ward DF, Belokobylskij SA, Butcher BA 2020. Zealastoa Quicke & Ward, gen. nov., a new basal cyclostome braconid wasp (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) from New Zealand. Austral Entomology 59(3): 455-466. WOS:000565514700003.

Fernandez-Triana JL, Ward DF 2020. Notogaster, a new genus of Microgastrinae (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) from New Zealand. Zootaxa 4801(2): 251-279. WOS:000540902100003.

Quicke DLJ, Belokobylskij SA, Braet Y, van Achterberg C, Hebert PDN, Prosser SWJ, Austin AD, Fagan-Jeffries EP, Ward DF, Shaw MR, Butcher BA 2020. Phylogenetic reassignment of basal cyclostome braconid parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera) with description of a new, enigmatic Afrotropical tribe with a highly anomalous 28S D2 secondary structure. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 190(3): 1002-1019. WOS:000593445900008.

Bartomeus I, Stavert JR, Ward D, Aguado O 2019. Historical collections as a tool for assessing the global pollination crisis. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B-Biological Sciences 374(1763). WOS:000450501500004.

Quicke DLJ, van Achterberg K, Ward D, Butcher BA 2019. Three new species of the New Zealand endemic, Neptihormius van Achterberg & Berry (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), with diverse host records. Austral Entomology 58(3): 515-523. WOS:000483807600005.

Edney-Browne E, Brockerhoff EG, Ward D 2018. Establishment patterns of non-native insects in New Zealand. Biological Invasions 20(7): 1657-1669

Seebens H, Blackburn TM, Dyer EE, Genovesi P, Hulme PE, Jeschke JM, Pagad S, Pysek P, van Kleunen M, Winter M, Ansong M, Arianoutsou M, Bacher S, Blasius B, Brockerhoff EG, Brundu G, Capinha C, Causton CE, Celesti-Grapow L, Dawson W, Dullinger S, Economo EP, Fuentes N, Guenard B, Jager H, Kartesz J, Kenis M, Kuhn I, Lenzner B, Liebhold AM, Mosena A, Moser D, Nentwig W, Nishino M, Pearman D, Pergl J, Rabitsch W, Rojas-Sandoval J, Roques A, Rorke S, Rossinelli S, Roy HE, Scalera R, Schindler S, Stajerova K, Tokarska-Guzik B, Walker K, Ward DF, Yamanaka T, Essl F 2018. Global rise in emerging alien species results from increased accessibility of new source pools. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 115(10): E2264-E2273. WOS:000426671900017.

Hodge S, Ward DF, Merfield CN, Liu WYY, Gunawardana D 2017. Seasonal patterns of drosophilid flies and parasitoid wasps attracted to rotting fruit and vegetable baits in Canterbury, New Zealand. New Zealand Entomologist 40(1): 7–15.

Kendall LK, Ward DF 2016. Habitat determinants of the taxonomic and functional diversity of parasitoid wasps. Biodiversity and Conservation 25(10): 1955–1972.

Groenteman R, Forgie SA, Hoddle MS, Ward DF, Goeke DF, Anand N 2015. Assessing invasion threats: novel insect-pathogen-natural enemy associations with native New Zealand plants in southern California. Biological Invasions 17(5): 1299–1305.

Ward DF 2015. The insidious threat of invasive invertebrates. In: Stow A, Maclean N, Holwell GI ed. Austral ark : the state of wildlife in Australia and New Zealand. Cambridge, U.K., Cambridge University Press. Pp. 162–185.

Ward D, Edney-Browne E 2015. Poles apart: comparing trends of alien Hymenoptera in New Zealand with Europe (DAISIE). PLOS One 10(7): e0132264.

Ward D, Anderson D, Barron M 2014. Progress on the eradication of Argentine ants. Landcare Research Contract Report ; LC1876. Landcare Research. 18 p.

Barron MC, Ward DF, Anderson DP 2014. How do we know the zeroes are real? - Surveillance to declare eradication. Protect (Spring 2014): 17–18.

Lester PJ, Brown SDJ, Edwards ED, Holwell GI, Pawson SM, Ward DF, Watts CH 2014. Critical issues facing New Zealand entomology. New Zealand Entomologist 37(1): 1–13.

Ward DF, Young M, Booth KAM, Beggs JR 2014. Patterns of beetle diversity in kauri forest. New Zealand Entomologist 37(2): 75–82.

Ward D 2014. Options for the biological control of Vespula wasps in New Zealand. Landcare Research Contract Report ; LC1684. Landcare Research. 15 p.

Lester PJ, Beggs JR, Brown RL, Edwards ED, Groenteman R, Toft RJ, Twidle AM, Ward DF 2013. The outlook for control of New Zealand’s most abundant, widespread and damaging invertebrate pests: social wasps. New Zealand Science Review 70(4): 56–62.

Fernández-Triana J, Ward DF, Cardinal S, Van Achterberg C 2013. A review of Paroplitis (Braconidae, Microgastrinae), and description of a new genus from New Zealand, Shireplitis, with convergent morphological traits. Zootaxa 3722(4): 549–568.

Ward DF 2013. Revision of Bethylidae (Hymenoptera) from New Zealand. New Zealand Entomologist 36(2): 107-130.

Stanley MC, Nathan HW, Phillips LK, Knight SJ, Galbraith JA, Winks CJ, Ward DF 2013. Invasive interactions: can Argentine ants indirectly increase the reproductive output of a weed? Arthropod-plant interactions 7(1): 59-67.

Ward D 2013. Status of control options for Vespula wasps in New Zealand. Landcare Research contract report ; LC1162. Landcare Research. 48 p.

Stanley MC, Ward DF 2012. Impacts of Argentine ants on invertebrate communities with below-ground consequences. Biodiversity and conservation 21: 2653–2669.

Smith MA, Fernández-Triana JL, Eveleigh E, Gómez J, Guclu C, Hallwachs W, Hebert PDN, Hrcek J, Huber JT, Janzen D, Mason PG, Miller S, Quicke DLJ, Rodriguez JJ, Rougerie R, Shaw MR, Várkonyi G, Ward DF, Whitfield JB, Zaldívar-Riverón A 2012. DNA barcoding and the taxonomy of Microgastrinae wasps (Hymenoptera, Braconidae): impacts after 8 years and nearly 20 000 sequences. Molecular ecology resources 13(2): 168-176. Show more


  • Editoral Board of PeerJ, PeerJ
  • Academic Editor of PLOS ONE, PLOS ONE