Interactive Effects of Pesticides, Nutritional Stress and Pathogens on Wild Bees

By means of laboratory, semi-outdoor and outdoor trials, and in partnership with the University of Bern’s Institute for Bee Health, we study the impact of the interactive effects of pesticides, nutritional stress and pathogens on wild bees.

As pollinators of agricultural crops and wild plants, wild bees are of immense environmental and economic importance, though nutritional stress, certain pesticides and even accidentally introduced bee diseases and pathogens can adversely affect these creatures. In high-input agricultural landscapes, wild bees are exposed to a number of these stress factors, which are possibly mutually reinforcing. How such potentially interactive effects influence the behaviour and fitness of solitary wild bees, and what consequences this in any case has for the provision of pollination services by wild bees, is still largely unknown, however. We are studying these issues in partnership with the Institute for Bee Health.


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