Zac Wylde

Post doctoral fellow

University of New South Wales


I am a recent PhD graduand from the Evolution and Ecology Research Centre at the University of New South Wales. I am interested in a wide range of topics within evolutionary biology including; chemical communication, ageing, trait integration, sex-role reversal and sexual selection amongst many others! For my PhD in the Bonduriansky lab I used the neriid fly Telostylinus angusticollis to empircally investigate numerous environmental effects on reproductive allocation.

I completed my MSc under the supervision of Professor Gregory Holwell at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. I investigated the courtship and aggressive behaviours, and allometry of an unstudied species of fly, Scordalus femoratus (Helosciomyzidae), along with the community ecology of native carrion flies in the Waitakere ranges. I have a keen interest in insects (particularly flies) but am willing to work with anything if the organism suits the question!

I am currently working on a number of projects with Professor Russell Bonduriansky and more recently, Professor John Hunt using the decorated cricket Gryllodes sigillatus. I am also a reviewing editor for the Journal of Evolutionary Biology.

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  • Animal behaviour
  • Non-genetic inheritance
  • Ageing
  • Chemical signalling
  • Condition-dependence
  • Insect genitalia
  • Phenotypic integration
  • Sexual selection and sexual conflict
  • Alternative reproductive tactics


  • PhD in Evolutionary Ecology, 2020

    University of New South Wales

  • MSc in Evolutionary Ecology, 2014

    University of Auckland

  • BSc in Biological Sciences, 2012

    University of Auckland

Recent Publications

Condition dependence of phenotypic integration and the evolvability of genitalic traits in a neriid fly.

The spectacular diversity of insect male genitalia, and their relative insensitivity to the environment, have long puzzled evolutionary …

Parental breeding age effects on descendants' longevity interact over 2 generations in matrilines and patrilines

Breeding age negatively influences offspring lifespan and ageing over two generations in both patrilines and matrilines.

Effects of condition and sperm competition risk on sperm allocation and storage in neriid flies.

Ejaculate traits can be sexually selected and often exhibit heightened condition-dependence. However, the influence of sperm …

Perceived dominance status affects chemical signalling in the neriid fly.

Chemical communication mediates many social interactions in insects but is still less well understood than other forms of …

Ontogenetic timing as a condition-dependent life history trait: High-condition males develop quickly, peak early, and age fast.

Within‐population variation in ageing remains poorly understood. In males, condition‐dependent investment in secondary sexual traits …