Why study pollinators in New York state?
Pollination is a valuable ecosystem service. In New York, pollinators include managed honey bees (Apis mellifera) and wild native bees. Pollinated plants support a functioning environment by providing clean air, filtered groundwater, habitats for wildlife and an aesthetic landscape, in addition to one-third of the food we eat. Studying bees in New York ensures the health and stability of our ecosystems and economy.
Our pollinator research programs
The Danforth Lab studies bee evolution, phylogeny, ecology and the important role that wild bees play as agricultural pollinators. They combine phylogenetic studies of bees based on molecular data with ecological studies of bees and their interactions with flowering plants.
PI: Bryan Danforth
The McArt Lab studies the ecology of plant-pollinator interactions in natural and managed systems. They use tools from chemical and molecular ecology to assess how pesticides and pathogens impact pollinator health, ecology and the delivery of pollination services.
PI: Scott McArt
The Raguso Lab studies the sensory and behavioral aspects of plant-pollinator interactions, with an emphasis on the evolution of chemical signals and cues. Their studies span the full range of generalized to specialized pollination systems, including plants as exotic as Titan arums and Dracula orchids, and as local and economically important as apple and strawberry.
PI: Robert Raguso
The Agrawal Lab studies the ecology and evolution of plant-insect interactions, including aspects of herbivory, pollination, community and chemical ecology, as well as coevolution. Research projects include work on local biodiversity, ecology of invasive plants, the biology of monarch butterflies and the evolution of plant strategies.
PI: Anurag Agrawal
The Geber Lab studies plant ecology and evolutionary biology, including interactions between plants and their bee pollinators. There are two ongoing projects involving wild bee pollinators: the ecology and evolution of specialist bee pollinator sharing in the plant genus Clarkia, and the impact of large solar energy facilities on wild bee populations in the eastern Mojave Desert.
PI: Monica Geber
The Poveda Lab studies plant-insect interactions in agricultural systems. Their goal is to find sustainable strategies that will manage pollinators, pests and natural enemies to increase yields. Past studies have investigated landscape-scale effects on strawberry pollinators and natural enemies in upstate New York.
PI: Katja Poveda
Dyce Lab for Honey Bee Studies
Dyce Laboratory for Honey Bee Studies is located adjacent to the Cornell campus at 209 Freese Road. The lab’s focus is to promote a sustainable beekeeping industry by conducting applied research, providing educational programs and supporting beekeepers. The lab also houses programs that study bumble bee health and the impacts of pesticides and pathogens on pollinators. The lab works closely with hobbyist, part-time and commercial beekeepers across New York. For the past 50 years, Dyce Lab has hosted beekeeping and pollinator health workshops and is open to the public for various extension activities.