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

Ness, J. H., W. F. Morris, and J. L. Bronstein. “Integrating quality and quantity of mutualistic service to contrast ant species protecting Ferocactus wislizeni.Ecology 87, no. 4 (April 2006): 912–21. https://doi.org/10.1890/0012-9658(2006)87[912:iqaqom]2.0.co;2. Full Text

Boyce, Mark S., Chirakkal V. Haridas, Charlotte T. Lee, and Charlotte T. The Nceas Stochastic Demography Working Group. “Demography in an increasingly variable world.Trends in Ecology & Evolution 21, no. 3 (March 2006): 141–48. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tree.2005.11.018. Full Text

Dwyer, Greg, and William F. Morris. “Resource-dependent dispersal and the speed of biological invasions.The American Naturalist 167, no. 2 (February 2006): 165–76. https://doi.org/10.1086/498944. Full Text

Morris, W. F., M. B. Traw, and J. Bergelson. “On testing for a tradeoff between constitutive and induced resistance.” Oikos 112, no. 1 (January 1, 2006): 102–10. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.0030-1299.2006.14253.x. Full Text

Mitchell, C. E., A. A. Agrawal, J. D. Bever, G. S. Gilbert, R. A. Hufbauer, J. N. Klironomos, J. L. Maron, et al. “Beyond enemy release: biotic interactions and plant invasions.” Ecology Letters 9 (2006): 726–40.

Parrent, J. L., W. F. Morris, and R. Vilgalys. “Effects of a CO2 – enriched atmosphere on community composition and diversity of ectomycorrhizal fungi.” Ecology 87 (2006): 2278–87.

Gross, K., W. F. Morris, M. S. Wolosin, and D. F. Doak. “Modeling vital rates improves estimation of population projection matrices.” Population Ecology 48, no. 1 (January 1, 2006): 79–89. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10144-005-0238-8. Full Text

Morris, W. F., W. G. Wilson, J. L. Bronstein, and J. H. Ness. “Environmental forcing and the competitive dynamics of a guild of cactus-tending ant mutualists.” Ecology 86, no. 12 (December 1, 2005): 3190–99. https://doi.org/10.1890/05-0465. Full Text

Vázquez, D. P., W. F. Morris, and P. Jordano. “Interaction frequency as a surrogate for the total effect of animal mutualists on plants.” Ecology Letters 8, no. 10 (October 1, 2005): 1088–94. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1461-0248.2005.00810.x. Full Text

Doak, Daniel F., William F. Morris, Cathy Pfister, Bruce E. Kendall, and Emilio M. Bruna. “Correctly estimating how environmental stochasticity influences fitness and population growth.The American Naturalist 166, no. 1 (July 2005): E14–21. https://doi.org/10.1086/430642. Full Text