William F. Morris

Professor of Biology

104 Bio Sci Bldg, Durham, NC 27708
Campus Box: 
Duke Box 90325, Durham, NC 27708-0325
(919) 525-4585
Bill Morris studies the population ecology of plants and insects (both herbivores and pollinators). Current projects include: the population dynamic consequences of constitutive and inducible resistance in plants, the maintenance of mutualistic interactions between flowering plants and nectar-robbing pollinators, the use of population-level attributes to detect biotic responses to ongoing environmental changes, and the use of mathematical models to assess viability of threatened and endangered populations. The common thread uniting these projects is that they combine field experiments and mathematical models to study population dynamics in natural and managed systems.


  • Ph.D., University of Washington 1990

  • B.S., Cornell University 1983

Kuefler, Daniel, Brian Hudgens, Nick M. Haddad, William F. Morris, and Nicole Thurgate. “The conflicting role of matrix habitats as conduits and barriers for dispersal.Ecology 91, no. 4 (April 2010): 944–50. https://doi.org/10.1890/09-0614.1. Full Text

Ness, J. H., W. F. Morris, and Judith L. Bronstein. “For ant-protected plants, the best defense is a hungry offense.Ecology 90, no. 10 (October 2009): 2823–31. https://doi.org/10.1890/08-1580.1. Full Text

Morales, M. A., W. F. Morris, and W. G. Wilson. “Allee dynamics generated by protection mutualisms can drive oscillations in trophic cascades.” Theoretical Ecology 1, no. 2 (June 1, 2008): 77–88. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12080-007-0006-9. Full Text

Abbott, Karen C., William F. Morris, and Kevin Gross. “Simultaneous effects of food limitation and inducible resistance on herbivore population dynamics.Theoretical Population Biology 73, no. 1 (February 2008): 63–78. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tpb.2007.09.006. Full Text

Morris, William F., Catherine A. Pfister, Shripad Tuljapurkar, Chirrakal V. Haridas, Carol L. Boggs, Mark S. Boyce, Emilio M. Bruna, et al. “Longevity can buffer plant and animal populations against changing climatic variability.Ecology 89, no. 1 (January 2008): 19–25. https://doi.org/10.1890/07-0774.1. Full Text

Morris, W. F., C. A. Pfister, S. Tuljapurkar, C. V. Haridas, C. Boggs, M. S. Boyce, E. M. Bruna, et al. “Longevity determines sensitivity of plant and animal populations to changing climatic variability.” Ecology 89 (2008): 19–25.

Morris, William F., Ruth A. Hufbauer, Anurag A. Agrawal, James D. Bever, Victoria A. Borowicz, Gregory S. Gilbert, John L. Maron, et al. “Direct and interactive effects of enemies and mutualists on plant performance: a meta-analysis.Ecology 88, no. 4 (April 2007): 1021–29. https://doi.org/10.1890/06-0442. Full Text

Morris, W. F., S. Tuljapurkar, C. V. Haridas, E. S. Menges, C. C. Horvitz, and C. A. Pfister. “Sensitivity of the population growth rate to demographic variability within and between phases of the disturbance cycle.Ecology Letters 9, no. 12 (December 2006): 1331–41. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1461-0248.2006.00988.x. Full Text

Parrent, Jeri Lynn, William F. Morris, and Rytas Vilgalys. “CO2-enrichment and nutrient availability alter ectomycorrhizal fungal communities.Ecology 87, no. 9 (September 2006): 2278–87. https://doi.org/10.1890/0012-9658(2006)87[2278:canaae]2.0.co;2. Full Text

Mitchell, Charles E., Anurag A. Agrawal, James D. Bever, Gregory S. Gilbert, Ruth A. Hufbauer, John N. Klironomos, John L. Maron, et al. “Biotic interactions and plant invasions.Ecology Letters 9, no. 6 (June 2006): 726–40. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1461-0248.2006.00908.x. Full Text