Our Goal

Ecdysis Foundation was created to support the reimagining of agriculture along ecological principles with independent, farmer-driven research. To accomplish this, we will apply cutting edge science to address the problems faced by farmers, ranchers, and bee keepers on the leading edge of regenerative agriculture. Through partnerships with major universities, we will train the next generation of scientists to conduct applied ecological research and communicate this research to the people that need it the most. Moreover, we will train farmers to act as citizen scientists that contribute to regional and national research goals.

Our Vision

We can grow food and conserve biodiversity and environmental health. Agriculture can be used to solve many of the world’s problems, and Ecdysis Foundation will provide the Research and Development that can make innovative practices scalable and transferable to as many operations as possible. We anticipate a paradigm shift in the way food is produced in this country, and we want to have answers ready for farmers when they are ready to make the change to farm in nature’s image.The South Dakota location is just the beginning. After we establish ourselves with a manageable set of questions/projects, we hope to first diversify the scientific expertise at the South Dakota location to best accomplish the multi-disciplinary nature of the science we are proposing. Then we will take the Ecdysis model nationally, establishing a network of facilities around the country that can address local and regional circumstances.

Research Themes

The central outcomes of our research will be to redesign agroecosystems to be more resilient and produce healthier food by increasing biodiversity and reducing disturbance to farmland. Ecdysis Foundation’s main interrelated research themes are 1) understanding how biodiversity and trophic interactions affect conservation of services provided by healthy biological networks within agroecosystems, 2) predicting the ecological safety of new technologies for pest and farm management, and 3) gaining a better understanding of how biological communities (especially within the soil) are structured and contribute to ecosystem services and whole farm performance. Focal commodities include livestock, crops, and honey bees. Ecdysis will have a strong emphasis on farmer-, rancher-, and beekeeper-driven research questions, and will empower producers by involving them in the actual research projects themselves (i.e., guided citizen science).

More Information


Dr. Jonathan Lundgren, PhD has a strong track record of solving research questions that others are afraid to ask. He has won prestigious awards for his ground breaking work, and is regarded as one of the top scientists in the country specializing in applied entomology and agroecology. Furthermore, his international leadership in risk assessment of pesticides has led to several federal and international advisory positions. The credibility of our scientific outputs will be vetted through the peer-review process in high quality scientific journals.
Ecdysis Foundation is designed as a non-profit company whose primary interest is to provide producers on the front edge of regenerative agriculture with answers. Inherent in this mission is full disclosure to the public of all research findings, and peer-reviewed science will be translated into practical language that is accessible to users from a wide range of backgrounds.
Ecdysis will be initially located in Deuel County, South Dakota. Major field cropping systems and abundant rangeland gives us access to the agricultural systems that need our help the most. Moreover, this is one of the top honey-producing regions of the country. Over time, we envision a network of research hubs that can apply Ecdysis philosophies to solve local and regional conditions and problems.