Derek Cummings, University of Florida
Climate change presents a large and diverse stimulus to natural systems. Pathogens and the host species they infect have a diverse set of life histories and will face ecological and evolutionary pressures at multiple scales. Here, I present several pathogen-host systems and speculate on a range of cascading effects that might change the dynamics of these systems and link them to other biological systems at broader scale. Changes in energy availability, environmental stressors on host, host abundance and connectivity may all play some role in dictating observed changes in pathogen-host systems in a changing climate. Extreme events may have subtle but important impacts on pathogens as they typically can respond very quickly to environmental disturbances. Over long time scales, extreme events may promote or destabilize abundances. I attempt to categorize changes and adaptations in these predator-prey systems that might accompany climate change into themes. Analogous approaches used in other biological systems may help us forecast the changes that will occur and open a discussion about adaptation in biological systems more broadly.