Dr MJM Harrap

Research Interests

I am interested in understanding how plant characteristics, particularly those relating to the floral display, influence pollinator behaviours and the impacts this has on plant-pollinator evolution.

Pollinators use many different floral cues and signals to detect and learn floral displays, these influence pollinator’s naïve (unlearnt) preferences but also allow pollinators to recognise more rewarding displays and adjust their foraging choices accordingly to favour the more rewarding flowers. This in turn influences plant pollination success. Many of these floral signalling modalities are detectable by humans such as colour and scent, but others are undetectable to humans without specialist tools and are consequently easily overlooked, such as floral temperature, humidity, gloss, taste and ‘feel.’ My research investigates such 'overlooked' floral signalling modalities. In Oxford, I’m working on the chemical ecology of plant-pollinator interactions.

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