Unit of Social Ecology (USE)
Faculty of Sciences | Biology of Organisms
The Unit is interested in the organisation of animal societies and study their underlying physiological and ethological mechanisms as well as the
adaptative value of collective patterns put in an ecological perspective. Both experimental and theoretical studies are mainly conducted on social insects
(ants, honeybees,...) but also on presocial/gregarious animal species as well as on societies of artificial agents (microrobots). We identify the generic rules
that shape spatial structures ( trail network, nest construction,...), temporal patterns (activity rythms,...) and social organization (division of
labour, task specialization,...). The practical issues of this research involve the development of new modalities to control animal populations as well as the
assessment of their impact on the environment (e.g. impact of ant fauna on vegetation,...).