David Armitage

photo of Dave Armitage
David Armitage
Assistant Professor
BSc University of Michigan
MSc University of Florida
PhD University of California Berkeley

I am an ecologist working at the interface of communities and ecosystems. After graduating from the University of Michigan, I earned a master’s degree in Wildlife Ecology and Conservation from the University of Florida researching the responses of forest bat communities to fire. I then did my PhD in Integrative Biology from UC Berkeley studying the assembly of carnivorous plant-associated microbial communities. Most recently, I spent four years conducting postdoctoral research at the University of Notre Dame and Rice University, focusing on problems related to species coexistence in fluctuating environments and teaching courses in general ecology and plant systematics.

My current research takes three general themes: the ecology of plant-microbe interactions, species coexistence in variable environments, and linkages between communities and ecosystem processes. As a natural history enthusiast, I have conducted this research across a variety of taxonomic groups (e.g., bats, insects, plants, microbes), adapting tools from other fields (e.g., biophysics, genomics, machine learning) as needed.

Professional Experience

  • University of Notre Dame (Postdoc, 2016-2019)
  • Rice University (Faculty fellow, 2019 - 2021)

Funding Awarded

  • JSPS Kakenhi Grant-in-aid for Early Career Scientists, FY2022–2024
  • USDA National Institute of Food & Agriculture Research Fellowship
  • Faculty Fellowship in Ecology and Evolution, Rice University
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship 
  • David N.K. and Aileen Wang Family Fellowship
  • National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant 
  • American Microscopical Society Research Fellowship
  • University of Notre Dame Environmental Change Initiative Grant
  • California Native Plant Society Research Fellowship
  • Native Plant Society of Oregon Research Fellowship
  • American Philosophical Society Lewis & Clark Fellowship
  • Sigma Xi National Chapter Research Grant
  • Bat Conservation International Research Fellowship

Select Publications

  • Armitage DW, Jones SE. (2020). Coexistence barriers confine the poleward range of a globally distributed plant. Ecology Letters. doi:10.1111/ele.13612
  • Armitage DW, Jones SE. (2019). How sample heterogeneity can obscure the signal of microbial interactions. ISME Journal. doi:10.1038/s41396-019-0463-3
  • Armitage DW, Jones SE. (2019). Negative frequency-dependent growth underlies the stable coexistence of two cosmopolitan aquatic plants. Ecology. doi:10.1002/ecy.2657
  • Armitage DW. (2017). Linking the development and functioning of a carnivorous pitcher plant’s microbial digestive community. ISME Journal. doi:10.1038/ismej.2017.99
  • Armitage DW. (2016). Time-variant species pools shape competitive dynamics and diversity-ecosystem function relationships. Proceedings of the Royal Society B. doi:10.1098/rspb.2016.1437
  • Armitage DW. (2015). Experimental evidence for a time-integrated effect of productivity on diversity. Ecology Letters. doi:10.1111/ele.12501


  • Associate Editor, Journal of Ecology 


  • Fundamentals of Ecology (OIST, Fall 2022)
  • Modern Satistics for Biologists (OIST, Spring 2022)
  • Plant Diversity (Rice University; Fall 2020)
  • Ecology (Rice University; Fall 2019)
  • Population and Community Ecology (UC Berkeley; Fall 2015, TA)
  • Vertebrate Natural History (UC Berkeley; Spring 2013, Spring 2015, TA)
  • Mammalogy Lab (UC Berkelely; Spring 2011, Spring 2014, TA)
  • Introductory Biology 1B (UC Berkeley; Fall 2010, Spring 2016, TA)
  • Introductory Biology Curriculum Development (UC Berkeley; Fall 2014)
  • Workshop on Generalized Linear Models in R (KMUTT Thailand; Summer 2011)