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Jenna Walters explores climate change and blueberry pollination

Jenna Walters, a PhD student in entomology advised by EEB faculty member Rufus Isaacs, focuses on understanding the impacts of extreme heat on blueberry pollination -- particularly how extreme heat affects the reproductive functioning and output of blueberry plants and their native bee pollinators.

Jenna Walters
Jenna Walters

For some context, wild blueberries are native to Michigan, and these wild blueberries have been used to cultivate blueberry crops, which are managed in agricultural landscapes. Michigan is a leading producer of northern highbush blueberries, yielding about 100 million pounds every year. This yield is largely attributed to blueberry pollinators, both wild and managed, who perform the very necessary service of pollination.

By uncovering the ways heat affects blueberry pollination systems, Walters is helping to create strategies to protect them from intensifying climate change.

Read more about her work at CANR.