Aarhus Universitets segl

Camera surveillance of pollinators in alpine grasslands

Main subject area: Automated monitoring of insects, pollination biology, climate change, range expansion

Short project description

Are alpine flowers visited more during the day, or during the night? Does the importance of nocturnal pollinators differ with elevation? How do alpine pollinators respond to warming treatments? And is it possible that some pollinators “bully” others away from flowers while foraging?

These are all questions that insect surveillance cameras help to address. We have recorded millions of images of flowers introduced to mountain sites in Switzerland, Norway and South Africa. They are a gold mine of information about plant-pollinator and pollinator-pollinator interactions. Projects will involve searching for and identifying pollinators in images, answering questions about the impacts of climate change on pollination and species interactions. In the process, students will contribute to a large and collaborative dataset to aid future efforts at automated pollinator detection.

Department and supervisor

Project start

Any time

Physical location of project and students work

Aarhus University campus (buildings 1110)

Extent and type of project

30 ECTS: Theoretical thesis based on literature studies and/or analysis of issued and edited data sets

45 ECTS: Experimental theses in which the student is responsible for collection and analysis of his/her own original data

Additional information - Useful reading

Alison, J., Alexander, J. M., Zeugin, N. D., Dupont, Y. L., Iseli, E., Mann, H. M. R., & Høye, T. T. (2022). Moths complement bumblebee pollination of red clover: A case for day-and-night insect surveillance. Biology Letters, 20220187, 1–5. https://doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2022.0187

Khorsand, R. S., Sancier Barbosa, F., May, J. L., Hoye, T. T., & Oberbauer, S. F. (2024). Effects of short- and long-term experimental warming on plant-pollinator interactions and floral rewards in the Low Arctic. Arctic Science. https://doi.org/10.1139/AS-2022-0034