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Title. Climate change and effect on Pollination Services.

Funding. FNRS-FWO, EOS program, 2018-2022.

Partners. ULB (Nicolas Vereecken), UGent (Guy Smagghe, Peter Vandamme).

Contact. Denis Michez, Maxence Gerard, Guillaume Ghisbain.

Abstract. Pollinators are one of the best example on how biodiversity can be essential for ecosystem resilience and for our own food safety. They participate to the ecosystem services of pollination for a majority of our crops. Our food production depends on them. Unfortunately, major pollinators like bees are threatened at different intensity according to their species and distribution. Their decline is associated to human activities and recent studies showed that climate change is already a major threat for groups like bumblebees.  Overall, we still know a few on how climate can impact wild bees and the pollination services they provide. The present project aim to fill the gap at different levels: from the field to the lab, from the gene to the colony, and from the species to the species community. Our project provides several important novelties in proposing an integrative approach combining the development of new models (i.e. wild bees) and explicit tests using existing databases and laboratory experiments. Our hypothesis is that pollinator communities are impacted by climate and will be affected by climate change in their composition and structure. Future increase of temperatures will stress to various extents the processes of species assemblages. We need evidence based mitigation strategy to prepare our society to this major disturbance.