Research in the Irwin Lab covers a variety of topics related to plant-pollinator and other plant-animal interactions, as well as invasive species. Research questions include:
1) What is the relative importance of direct and indirect effects of antagonists on the ecology and evolution of plant-pollinator mutualisms?
2) Do plant interactions with mutualists and antagonists simultaneously shape and constrain selection on nectar traits?
3) What are the costs and benefits of naturally occurring secondary compounds found in nectar and pollen on bumble bee parasites and bumble bee performance?
4) How do plant-pollinator interactions respond to environmental change? (research includes work on invasive species, urbanization, and climate change)
5) How can we combine ecology and economics for the sustainable control of invasive species?