Insect pollinators are essential for both the production of a large proportion of world crops and the health of natural ecosystems. As important pollinators, bumblebees must learn to forage on flowers to feed both themselves and provision their colonies. Increased use of pesticides has caused concern over sublethal effects on bees, such as impacts on reproduction or learning ability. However, little is known about how sublethal exposure to field-realistic levels of pesticide might affect the ability of bees to visit and manipulate flowers.

Insect pollination is a vital ecosystem service that maintains biodiversity and sustains agricultural crop yields. Social bees are essential insect pollinators, so it is concerning that their populations are in global decline.

It has been postulated that climate warming may pose the greatest threat species in the tropics, where ectotherms have evolved more thermal specialist physiologies. Although species could rapidly respond to environmental change through adaptation, little is known about the potential for thermal adaptation, especially in tropical species. In the light of the limited empirical evidence available and predictions from mutation-selection theory, we might expect tropical ectotherms to have limited genetic variance to enable adaptation.

Emerging infectious diseases (EIDs) are recognized as having significant social, economic and ecological costs, threatening human health, food security, wildlife conservation and biodiversity. We review the processes underlying the emergence of infectious disease, focusing on the similarities and differences between conceptual models of disease emergence and biological invasions in general.

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