Students who are interested to do a project in our group within their "Projektmodul", Bachelor or Master Thesis, are welcome at any time. Most of the projects are linked to the different PhD projects and thus contribute important data, which will not disappear in a drawer but are substantial to promote our common science. Students are also welcome to bring their own ideas. If possible we try to implement these as well in respective projects.
Pharmacophagy in sawflies
The turnip sawfly, Athalia rosae, collects chemical compounds (‘clerodendrins’) from bugleweed plants (Ajuga reptans), that in other Athalia spp. are known to influence predation rates and mating success, a behaviour known as pharmacophagy. Furthermore, adults are also known to aggressively ‘feed’ on clerodendrins that are present on the bodies of conspecifics previously exposed to A. reptans plants. Here we aim to elucidate the different effects of clerodendrins (or metabolites thereof) on the adult phenotype, with a focus on immunity and predation risk as well as comparing the effects of clerodendrins collected from plants and those obtained from conspecifics.