The Bell Lab
Department of Biology

Current Research Program
Major research themes


Food webs

The food web shows how matter and energy flow among different kinds of organism in the ecosystem.  I have developed an individual-based community model called Uqbar to investigate how the topology of the food web is determined and how it evolves over time.

  • Bell, G. 2007. The evolution of trophic structure. Heredity 99: 1-12. (Commentary: Heredity 99, 477-478)

[A simplified, non-evolving version of Uqbar with one or two species at each of three trophic levels can be found as ZIP files that you must first extract. You can choose either a single community (distSimple) or a metacommunity (distSpatial), then double-click on UqbarSimple or UqbarSpatial in the dist folder. These are executable JAR files and neither the authors nor McGill University will take any responsibility for any damage they may cause to your computer. You will need to install Java in order to run the programs