2023 September 21 - Moths and Native Plants
Moth Pollination and Native Plants
with Chris Cosma
Monthly Meeting: September 21 - Thursday
Doors Open 7:00pm, Presentations begin at 7:30pm
(Next to the Tustin Library and close to many restaurants)
Chris Cosma is the winner of the Forest Shreve Research Award for his dissertation work on moth pollinator networks in the Sonoran Desert.
His work uses a 2,400-meter elevation gradient and DNA metabarcoding to identify pollen-transport across space and time. This work simultaneously identifies some of the abiotic and biotic drivers of pollinator network composition and structure, while also providing predictions for how pollinators and associated plant species may respond to climate change.
While most research has focused on highly specialized interactions such as the yucca-yucca moth relationship, there is growing evidence that entire communities of moths and plants are involved in nocturnal pollination networks that rival their diurnal counterparts in scale and complexity. By analyzing how network structure and stability vary in relation to abiotic and biotic factors along an elevational gradient, this research will help inform predictions about how plant and insect communities will be impacted by climate change.