Research interests

We study the behaviour, ecology and evolution of social insects. We are particularly interested in the role of communication and learning in individual and collective decision-making, different forms of division of labour and colony organisation.

Our main objectives are:

  • Understand how bees and ants integrate multiple sources of information in their decision-making
  • Understand variation among species in the degree of division of labour
  • Elucidate the molecular basis of foraging strategies

Our main model species are the honeybee Apis mellifera, the ant Temnothorax nylanderi and the stingless bee Tetragonisca angustula.


Dr. Christoph Grüter (
School of Biological Sciences
University of Bristol
Life Sciences Building
24 Tyndall Avenue
Bristol, BS8 1TQ
United Kingdom

Latest news

  • 20 December 2021: Big congratulations to Simone Glaser on her excellent PhD defence! We wish Simone all the best for the future!
  • 29 October 2021: And another PhD opportunity to study the behaviour and ecology of honeybees and stingless bees, including field work in Brazil. Apply here (read instructions for GW4+ DTP NERC).
  • 20 October 2021: Check out our new PhD opportunity to work on honeybee nutrition, behaviour and maternal effects. Deadline: 6th December.
  • 15 March 2021: Congratulations to Simone Glaser for publishing the first paper from her PhD in Insectes Sociaux!
  • 4 December 2020: Stingless Bees: Their Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution is finally out! You can order it here. Get a 20% discount if you use the code  M3erfPRc3p99nyC before 1 Jan 2021. Get a 40% discount if you published with Springer before.
  • 30 October 2020: In a new study, Melissa Linn et al. show that the neurotransmitters octopamine and dopamine affect waggle dance communication in honeybees.
  • 25 September 2020: Big congratulations to Tianfei Peng who successfully defended his PhD! He will be greatly missed and we wish him all the best for the future!
  • 26 August 2020: Christoph's new book about Stingless bees is about to come out. Information about ordering & discounts follow soon (40% off if you've published in a Springer journal).