Elevated CO2 and bee nutrition
Elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide is not only altering the global climate, but also has important impacts on the nutritional content of important agricultural food crops. Recent work has shown that similar effects may be happening in bees; elevated atmospheric CO2 can alter nutritional content, and in particular reduce protein concentration in flowers that bees depend on for food. I'm interested in understanding the effects of these changes in pollen nutrition on bees, and in collaboration with researchers at the USDA Adaptive Cropping Systems lab and the Planetary Health Alliance (and with funding support from the Winslow Foundation), we're beginning experiments to grow flowers at different CO2 concentrations and study the effects of these conditions on bees.
FACE (Free-Air Carbon dioxide Enrichment) plots at the USDA Adaptive Cropping Systems Lab.