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Butterfly on flower

 

Recent Projects

  • Reproductive biology and conservation of rare orchid species in Ireland (National Parks and Wildlife Service grant, 2004-2007)
  • Impacts of the alien invasive Rhododendron ponticum on native plants, pollinators and their interaction (Science Foundation Ireland Basic Research Grant, 2004-2007)
  • The interactions between native bees and alien plants (Environmental Protection Agency Doctoral Scholarship, 2005-2008)
  • ALARM project (EP FP6 integrated project, Associated Partner, 2006-2008). TCD was an Associated Partner within the ALARM project, contributing to the Field Site Network experiments (with funding for technical support), and collaborating with researchers in the Pollination Loss and Invasions Modules.
  • UREKA Phytotechnology Ireland Summer School (Science Foundation Ireland, 2006-2008). This was a joint UCD and TCD initiative: we came together to offer students the unique opportunity to focus on plant science solutions to problems of international significance. The Phytotechnology Ireland summer school integrated teaching and research. Students came and worked in our research labs for 10 weeks over the summer period and received training in general and specific research techniques.
  • Biochange (Environmental Protection Agency, Jan 2006 – Jun 2009). This €1.6 million budget, integrated project on Irish biodiversity titled “Biodiversity and environmental change: an integrated study encompassing a range of scales, taxa and habitats” involved multi-disciplinary research across nine Irish research institutions working in close collaboration. Jane Stout played a key role in developing the cluster, and co-ordinated WP2 Non native species: impacts on biodiversity, strategies for management and predictions of future invasions. Jane led a post-doctoral project within this WP on Predicting plant invasion – which taxa are the future invasive aliens? during which Ann Milbau (Currently at Research Group of Plant and Vegetation Ecology, Climate Impacts Research Centre, Umea University E-mail: ann.milbau@emg.umu.se) created a database of traits (biological, ecological and historical) of Irish alien plants (www.biochange.ie/alienplants/). In addition, Jane co-supervised Caitriona Cunningham’s MSc in WP1 Landscape conservation – loss and fragmentation in a habitat mosaic, entitled Habitat mosaics and biodiversity at the landscape level.
  • Ecology and distribution of mountain bumblebee, Bombus monticola (Heritage Council, Mar-Nov 2006). Bombus monticola is a recent coloniser of Ireland and we know very little about its local distribution and ecology. Since bumblebees are important pollinators, but are often in decline, and the global distribution of B. monticola is restricted to the British Isles and Fenno-Scandinavia, Irish populations are globally important. Jane Stout worked in collaboration with Drs Una Fitzpatrick and Mark Brown (Zoology Department, TCD), Prof Dave Goulson (University of Stirling) and Drs Mairi Knight and Mick Hanley (University of Plymouth) to investigate its distribution, foraging ecology, population phenology and population genetics.
    www.bumblebeeconservation.org.uk
  • Speciation processes and pollinator-mediated selection in nectarless Dactylorhiza species (Academy of Finland post-doc fellowship awarded to Elisa Vallius, 2005-2006). Dr Elisa Vallius joined our research group for 18 months from University of Jyväskylä to study speciation via hybridisation of Dactylorhiza incarnata ssp. coccinea and D. fuchsii in Irish dune populations. This project combined field ecology with molecular biology to examine the functional status of hybrid plants in mixed populations.
  • Diversity and abundance of bumblebees in urban and agricultural environments (Heritage Council, March-November 2003, in collaboration with Mark Brown, TCD Zoology). We found bumblebee assemblages were more abundant, diverse and species rich in urban areas, suggesting that such areas may act as both a refuge and a reservoir for these important pollinators. In addition, the number of workers of two species peaked earlier in the year in urban compared with agricultural sites.

 

 

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Last updated 4 April 2013 botany@tcd.ie.