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ESG Postdoc Lecture: Supporting Wild Bee Populations in Agroecosystems
January 30 @ 2:30 pm - 4:00 pm
Dr. Jane Morrison,
Postdoctoral Fellow in Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems,
Bees are fascinating and complex creatures, comprising over 20,000 different species. Managed honey bees represent only a very small subset of species (<10), while the rest are wild and have very different lifestyles and capabilities. Wild bees are a crucial aspect of our ecosystem and, like honey bees and other pollinators, they are facing mounting threats and declining populations worldwide. Industrial agriculture has been identified as the main threat to wild pollinators, mostly due to reductions in natural areas holding critical floral and nesting resources.
In this presentation, Dr. Morrison will share her knowledge of wild bees and their remarkable diversity in habits, characteristics and requirements for survival. Furthermore, she will discuss her doctoral research which examined the role of native wild flowers, including many species considered to be weeds, in supporting wild bees in agroecosystems. Her research was based on two multi-year studies carried out in Catalonia, Spain. One main focus of this research was to identify the optimal characteristics of agricultural field margins for pollinator conservation and their benefit in landscapes of varying levels of diversity. Her results suggest that a paradigm shift is required, moving away from conventional agricultural management towards more sustainable and resilient farming systems.
Presented by the Department of Environment and Geography. Lecture is open to all.