As an Honours student, I investigated the role of native bees and the exotic European Honey Bee in providing pollination services in different types of urban green spaces, and the landscape factors that influence the delivery of this service.
Specifically, my research aimed to quantify the effectiveness of small native bees versus introduced honeybees as native plant pollinators, and to determine if native or exotic vegetation composition influences pollinator communities and subsequent pollination services.
A greater understanding of urban bee diversity and the pollination service they deliver is increasingly important due to continued urban expansion and associated habitat loss and fragmentation.
This project assisted land managers to understand how green space management influences native pollinator density and diversity, and hence the pollination services occurring in urban green spaces. This information is crucial for the conservation and restoration of native plants dependent upon insect pollinators in urban landscapes, especially if the decline of the European honeybee reported internationally spreads to Australia.
Jess is undertaking a Master of Environment at The University of Melbourne and working as a research assistant with the Green Infrastructure Research Group.
2009 – 2012 La Trobe University, Bachelor of Animal and Veterinary Biosciences, major in Zoology.
2013 – 2014 University of Melbourne, Bachelor of Environments (Honours). Research Thesis – ‘The importance of native and exotic bees for pollination services to plants in an Australian urban environment’