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Bees, bugs and pollination: How global change can affect population health and disease ecology?

Lena Wilfert

University of Ulm


Research Website

Fri | September 13th, 2024
10.00 – 11.00 am

University of Hohenheim
BIO building

Global change, such as land use intensification, invasive species and of course of climate change, can disrupt biotic interactions, for example leading to emerging diseases or declines in population health.

We combine studies of wild assemblages of bees and other pollinators with omics approaches and experimental studies to understand how global change affects biotic interactions in these beneficial insects, crucial for the maintenance of biodiversity and human food security.

For example, we study how the anthropogenic de-novo acquisition of vector-borne transmission has led to disease emergence and changes in pathogen ecology in wild and managed bees and how land-use intensification affects pollinator health. This sheds light
on fundamental evolutionary ecology, such as what drives the evolution of virulence, but at the same time identifies conservation strategies that can mitigate the effects of climate change on pollinator communities.