plant-pollinator interactions

beeWe’re engaged in ongoing research looking at the interactions between plants and pollinators (and additional levels above these – plants interact with other plants via pollinators, whilst individual pollinators interact with other pollinators of their own and other species).

Much of this recent work is in collaboration with Heather Whitney (University of Bristol), exploring how floral characteristics influence and manipulate the behaviour of visiting pollinators. In addition, we are exploring how the structure of the landscape can affect the way in which pollinators are able to interact with plants.

relevant publications

Rands SA (2014). Landscape fragmentation and pollinator movement within agricultural environments: a modelling framework for exploring foraging and movement ecology. PeerJ 2: e269 | full text | pdf

Rands SA, Glover BJ & Whitney HM (2011). Floral epidermal structure and flower orientation: getting to grips with awkward flowers. Arthropod-Plant Interactions 5: 279-285 | abstract | pdf (postprint version)

Rands SA & Whitney HM (2008). Floral temperature and optimal foraging: is heat a feasible floral reward for pollinators? PLoS One 3: e2007 | pdf | full text

Rands SA & Whitney HM (2010). Effects of pollinator density-dependent preferences on field margin pollination in the midst of agricultural monocultures: a modelling approach. Ecological Modelling 221: 1310-1316 | abstract | pdf (postprint version)

Rands SA & Whitney HM (2011). Field margins, foraging distances and their impacts on nesting pollinator success. PLoS One 6: e25971 | full text | pdf

Whitney HM, Milne G, Rands SA, Vignolini S, Martin C & Glover BJ (2013). The influence of pigmentation patterning on bumblebee foraging from flowers of Antirrhinum majus. Naturwissenschaften 100: 249-256 | abstract

Whitney HM, Rands SA, Elton NJ & Ellis AG (2012). A technique for measuring petal gloss, with examples from the Namaqualand flora. PLoS One 7: e29476 | full text | pdf

Whitney HM, Reed A, Rands SA, Chittka L & Glover BJ (2016). Flower iridescence increases object detection in the insect visual system without compromising object identity. Current Biology 26: 802-808 | full text (open access) | pdf