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Trinity College Dublin

Personal Information
Name Stout, Jane Catherine
Main Department Botany
College Title Associate Professor
College Tel +353 1 896 3761
Fax +353 1 896 1147
After completeing my undergraduate degree in Environmental Sciences at the University of Southampton, I went to Tanzania to work as a voluntary field assistant before returning to Southampton to work as a research technician in Dave Goulson's lab. I then went on to do a PhD on bumblebee foraging ecology with Drs Goulson and Allen, and a post-doc with Dr Goulson on bumblebee repellent scent marking. I also took part in two expeditions to Tasmania to study the impacts of non-native bumblebees on Australian flora and fauna. I then worked as a teaching fellow at Southampton before moving to Ireland. I was awarded an Enterprise Ireland post-doctoral fellowship to examine the interactions between non-native plants and their pollinators in Ireland, which brought me to Trinity College Dublin. In 2003, I was appointed as broad-curriculum lecturer in Botany, in 2007 I was appointed as lecturer in Botany, and in 2010 I was promoted to Senior Lecturer.
Details Date
Associated Partner in EU integrated project on Assessing LArge scale Risks for biodiversity with tested Methods (ALARM) 2005-2009
Member, National Platform for Biodiversity Research, Ireland 2005-present
Consultant, Bee conservation workshop – creating red data list for Irish bees, Trinity College Dublin Sept 2005
Co-organiser of International Union for the Study of Social Insects (British Section) Meeting, Trinity College Dublin Dec 2003
Co-organiser of Irish Plant Scientists' Association Meeting, Trinity College Dublin March 2003 & March 2009
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Membership of Professional Institutions, Associations, Societies
Details Date From Date To
International Union for the Study of Social Insects (British Section) 1998 2003
British Ecological Society 1996 present
International Bee Research Association 1998 2005
Ecological Society of America 2014
Awards and Honours
Award Date
Fellowship of Trinity College Dublin 2011
Language Skill Reading Skill Writing Skill Speaking
English Fluent Fluent Fluent
Description of Research Interests
I am an ecologist and much of my research uses plant-pollinator interactions as a model system for investigating anthropogenic impacts on biodiversity and ecosystem services. I have particular interests in rare native and invasive alien species, in both managed and unmanaged landscapes. I employ field-based experimental studies combined with laboratory analyses to characterise insect behaviour, plant breeding systems, biodiversity and conservation of pollinators and their impacts on plant population dynamics.
Research Interests
Bees Behavioural and evolutionary ecology Biodiversity Biodiversity and Conservation
Biological Invasion Ecology Entomology Environmental biology
Insects Invasive Alien Species Pollination Pollinators
Research Projects
Project title Interactions between hydrology and ecology of dune slack ecosystems
Summary Dune slacks are freshwater wetlands found between dry, fixed dune ridges in sand dune systems. The groundwater table is close to the surface and flooding typically occurs in winter. Because of their soil moisture content and plant communities, dune slacks increase the habitat and species diversity of sand dune systems where they occur. Their conservation value has been recognised under the EU Habitats Directive (Council Directive 92/43/EEC), where dune slacks are listed as an Annex I habitat. The most recent monitoring round for Annex I habitats in Europe identified pollution and abstraction of groundwater as major threats to the conservation status of dune slacks. Currently, the conservation status of dune slacks is assessed primarily on the floristic characteristics and vegetation structure of the habitat. Invertebrates fulfil a key role in ecosystem function of natural and agricultural landscapes, facilitating pollination and nutrient cycling among other functions. Sensitivity of aquatic macro-invertebrates to water quality has been utilised in freshwater monitoring methodologies such as Q-value assessment. The effects of changing water levels and water quality on flora of dune slacks has been studied elsewhere, but the invertebrate communities of dune slacks are poorly understood in comparison, particularly in Ireland. This project seeks to establish what resources dune slacks provide for invertebrates in sand dune systems and whether they support specific assemblages of plants and invertebrates which are indicative of habitat quality. The effects of human interference with groundwater in sand dune systems will also be investigated.
Funding Agency TCD
Type of Project
Date from 01.09.13
Date to 31.08.16
Person Months 36

Project title Effects of scale and landscape structure on pollinator diversity and the provision of ecosystem services in agricultural landscapes
Summary Pollinating insects are important in agricultural and natural landscapes to ensure seed production in crop and wild plant species. However, pollinators are becoming more scarce in farmland and semi-natural areas and require conservation in order to continue delivering this pollination service. Since pollinating insects are very mobile and are influenced by the availability of flowers and nest sites over a scale of several kilometres, it is important that conservation is implemented at the appropriate scale. This project will investigate how different pollinating insects (bees, hoverflies, butterflies) are affected by agricultural habitats at the field scale (which crop is being grown), at the local scale (the diversity of crop and non-crop habitats surrounding agricultural fields) and the regional scale (the type and intensity of farming in region). At the same time, we will investigate how this affects pollination of different types of plants. This project will allow us to determine conservation measures for different pollinating insects and to recommend strategies to promote pollination of both crop and wild plants in agricultural landscapes.
Funding Agency IRC
Type of Project Studentship
Date from Sep 2012
Date to Aug 2015
Person Months 36

Project title Toxic nectar and pollen: impacts on flower-visiting mutualists and antagonists and role in invasion success
Summary Despite the ecological and medical importance of secondary plant compounds, their role in biological invasion and impacts on native species are poorly understood. Using field surveys, laboratory bioassays and chemical analyses, we will ascertain the impacts of toxins in nectar (and pollen) on plant mutualists (pollinators) and antagonists (nectar robbers), determine how local selection pressures affect the expression of toxic compounds and elucidate how toxins influence invasion by non-native species. By determining impacts of non-native toxic nectar on key ecosystem service providers, results will contribute to sustainable management of pollinators and invasive species.
Funding Agency IRCSET
Type of Project
Date from Sept 2010
Date to Sept 2014
Person Months 36

Project title Impacts of Legume cropping on biodiversity
Summary Legumes Futures is an EU project (full title: Legume-supported cropping systems for Europe), coordinated by The Scottish Agricultural College, involving 18 partner institutions. The project will deliver knowledge and technology for the optimisation of legumes in European agricultural systems and promote the partnerships needed to support the public policy outcomes sought. Our task is to carry out an assessment of the influence of legume crops on plant and soil biodiversity in cropping systems across Atlantic, Central Europe and Scandinavian Climate zones. We will assess higher plant biodiversity, earthworm biodiversity and within-soil biological activity.
Funding Agency EU FP7
Type of Project
Date from Sept 2010
Date to Sept 2013
Person Months 36

Project title Plant-pollinator ecology in dune ecosystems
Summary Coastal sand dunes are diverse habitats both in terms of physical structure and community richness and are protected under the EU Habitats Directive. Despite being recognised as providing a range of physical ecosystem services (eg rainwater and/or groundwater filtration, protection from storm damage, sediment stores etc), their value in providing biological services, such as pollination, has not been well explored. Dunes provide excellent habitats for a wide range of plants and invertebrates, particularly warmth-loving specie that need a degree of openness of habitat as part of their life-history requirements, and represent a refugia for rarer species. This project will assess how the size, management and surrounding land use of coastal sand dunes affects plant and insect communities, insect-flower interaction networks, and pollination services. We are working in collaboration with Dr Una Fitzpatrick at the National Biodiversity Data Centre.
Funding Agency TCD Studentship
Type of Project
Date from Oct 2010
Date to Sept 2013
Person Months 36

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Publications and Other Research Outputs
Peer Reviewed
Stanley DA, Stout JC , Quantifying the impacts of bioenergy crops on pollinating insect abundance and diversity: a field scale evaluation reveals taxon-specific responses., Journal of Applied Ecology, 50, 2013, p335 - 344
Dietzsch AC, Stanley DA, Stout JC, Relative abundance of an invasive alien plant affects native pollination processes. , Oecologia, 167(2):, (2), 2011, p469 - 479
Power EF, Stout JC, Organic dairy farming: impacts on insect–flower interaction networks and pollination, Journal of Applied Ecology, 48, (3), 2011, p561–569
TARA - Full Text
Mayer C, Adler L, Armbruster WS, Dafni A, Eardley C, Huang S-Q, Kevan PG, Ollerton J, Packer L, Ssymank A, Stout JC, Potts SG, Pollination ecology in the 21st century: Key Questions for future research, Journal of Pollination Ecology, 3, 2011, p8 - 23
TARA - Full Text
Dauber J, Jones MB, Stout JC, The impact of biomass crop cultivation on temperate biodiversity, Global Change Biology: Bioenergy, 2, 2010, p289 - 309
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Last Updated:17-SEP-2014