Extrapolation of ecotoxicological effects in a changing climate

Organisation: Wageningen University & Research, The Netherlands

Supervisors: Paul J. Van den Brink

Hi, my name is Pierina Rivas and I come from Venezuela. I studied Biology in my home country at the Simón Bolívar University. However, through an exchange program, I had the opportunity of doing my BSc thesis and finishing my BSc studies at Lund University in Sweden. There, I continued my studies with an MSc in biology with specialization in Aquatic Ecology. During my time in Lund, I found myself highly interested in studying the effects of pollution, thus both my BSc and MSc thesis specialized in aquatic ecotoxicology. In specific, I am greatly passionate about the study of effects under realistic scenarios, thus my MSc thesis focused on evaluating the direct and indirect effects of nanoplastics on Daphnia magna under natural conditions using a mesocosm approach.

Pesticides’ toxicity has been studied thoroughly in the past. However, most studies have not considered how other natural stressors may interact and influence the toxicity of these chemicals. As DC9 of the QTOX project at Wageningen University & Research, my PhD project will aim to evaluate and understand the combined effects of pesticides (e.g., herbicides, insecticides, fungicides) and climate change related stressors (e.g., elevated temperatures, heat waves, drought, etc.) on aquatic communities and the ecosystem as a whole under realistic conditions with the use of outdoor mesocosms.