Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Life Sciences

Kinds of Pollination

  • crop pollination
  • cross pollination
  • insect pollination
  • natural pollination
  • open pollination
  • wind pollination

  • Terms modified by Pollination

  • pollination biology
  • pollination condition
  • pollination ecology
  • pollination experiment
  • pollination mutualism
  • pollination period
  • pollination rate
  • pollination service
  • pollination services
  • pollination success
  • pollination syndrome
  • pollination system
  • pollination treatment

  • Selected Abstracts

    Crop Pollination by Bees.

    K.S. Delaplane & D.F. Mayer
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    Environmentally induced variation in floral traits affects the mating system in Datura wrightii

    FUNCTIONAL ECOLOGY, Issue 1 2002
    E. Elle
    Summary 1If pollination is unpredictable, selection may favour the production of selfed seeds in the absence of pollen vectors, even in plant species with obvious adaptations for outcrossing. Pollination may be less predictable for plants growing in certain environments if environmental factors affect the floral phenotype. Through effects on flower morphology and the floral display, the environment may affect the outcrossing rate. 2We manipulated two environmental factors, water availability and exposure to insect herbivores, in a common-garden experiment using a perennial herb, Datura wrightii. We measured herkogamy (the separation of anthers and stigmas within flowers), total flower length, and flower number, and used a single-gene trichome dimorphism as a marker to determine per-plant outcrossing rates. 3The large amount of variation in herkogamy was affected by trichome type, irrigation and herbivory. In addition, watered plants had longer corollas, and plants attacked by herbivores had fewer open flowers. Thus environmental factors affect floral phenotype. 4However, irrigation and herbivory did not directly affect outcrossing rate. There were indirect effects of these treatments on outcrossing because plants with increased herkogamy and fewer open flowers had higher outcrossing rates. 5, A greenhouse experiment showed that autonomous selfing is more likely when herkogamy is reduced, and can occur both as the flower opens and when the corolla is shed. 6, These experiments are among the first to show that within-population variation in the mating system can be due to environmentally induced variation in floral traits. [source]

    The restoration of ecological interactions: plant,pollinator networks on ancient and restored heathlands

    Mikael Lytzau Forup
    Summary 1Attempts to restore damaged ecosystems usually emphasize structural aspects of biodiversity, such as species richness and abundance. An alternative is to emphasize functional aspects, such as patterns of interaction between species. Pollination is a ubiquitous interaction between plants and animals. Patterns in plant,pollinator interactions can be analysed with a food web or complex-systems approach and comparing pollination webs between restored and reference sites can be used to test whether ecological restoration has taken place. 2Using an ecological network approach, we compared plant,pollinator interactions on four pairs of restored and ancient heathlands 11 and 14 years following initiation of restoration management. We used the network data to test whether visitation by pollinators had been restored and we calculated pollinator importance indices for each insect species on the eight sites. Finally, we compared the robustness of the restored and ancient networks to species loss. 3Plant and pollinator communities were established successfully on the restored sites. There was little evidence of movement of pollinators from ancient sites onto adjacent restored sites, although paired sites correlated in pollinator species richness in both years. There was little insect species overlap within each heathland between 2001 and 2004. 4A few widespread insect species dominated the communities and were the main pollinators. The most important pollinators were typically honeybees (Apis mellifera), species of bumblebee (Bombus spp.) and one hoverfly species (Episyrphus balteatus). The interaction networks were significantly less complex on restored heathlands, in terms of connectance values, although in 2004 the low values might reflect the negative relationship between connectance and species richness. Finally, there was a trend of restored networks being more susceptible to perturbation than ancient networks, although this needs to be interpreted with caution. 5Synthesis and applications. Ecological networks provide a powerful tool for assessing the outcome of restoration programmes. Our results indicate that heathland restoration does not have to occur immediately adjacent to ancient heathland for functional pollinator communities to be established. Moreover, in terms of restoring pollinator interactions, heathland managers need only be concerned with the most common insect species. Our focus on pollination demonstrates how a key ecological service can serve as a yardstick for judging restoration success. [source]

    The impact of an insecticide on insect flower visitation and pollination in an agricultural landscape

    Claire Brittain
    1Pesticides are considered a threat to pollinators but little is known about the potential impacts of their widespread use on pollinators. Less still is known about the impacts on pollination, comprising the ecosystem service that pollinators provide to wildflowers and crops. 2The present study measured flower visitation and pollination in an agricultural landscape, by placing potted flowering plants (Petunia sp.) in vine fields sprayed with a highly toxic insecticide (fenitrothion). During two sampling rounds, insect visitors to the petunias were observed and measures of pollination were recorded by counting and weighing seeds. 3In the earlier sampling round, a lower species richness of insect visitors was observed in fields that had received an early application of insecticide. No negative impacts were found from later applications. The results obtained suggest a greater potential harm to insect pollinators and flower visitation as a result of insecticide application early in the season. 4No reduction in pollination was found in fields that received an early insecticide application. Pollination was greater with two insecticide applications between sampling rounds rather than one application. 5In the present study system, insecticide application had a negative effect on pollinators but a possible positive effect on pollination services. In some cases, it may be that actions for conserving biodiversity will not benefit pollination services to all plants. [source]

    Influences of Cross Pollination on Pollen Tube Growth and Fruit Set in Zuili Plums (Prunus salicina)

    Hui-Juan Jia
    Abstract Zuili plum (Prunus salicina L.) trees usually set fruit poorly, although they produce high quality fruit. To elucidate the causes of the poor fruit set, pollen tube growth into pistils and fruit set percentage were investigated after cross-, self- and open-pollination. Ovule development in Zuili pistils was also investigated. Pollen tube penetration into the ovules via the obturator and micropyle was best when Zuili pistils were pollinated by cv. Black Amber (P. domestica) pollen grains, although cross-pollinations with Hongxinli and Miili (P. salicina) pollen were more effective than self- and open-pollination. The fruit set percentage was also highest in pistils pollinated with Black Amber pollen grains. Morphological observation of Zuili pistils revealed that the trees produce "double pistils", developing two ovaries from a basal pistil, at a rate as high as 28%. In such abnormal pistils, most ovules were lacking an embryo sac or were entirely degenerated. The percentage of normally developed ovules was 24.3% and 8.9% in normal and double pistils, respectively. From these results, we conclude that the main causes of poor fruit set of Zuili plums are a lack of effective cross-pollination and the production of high percentages of double pistils in which normally developed ovules are scarcely formed. [source]

    Pollination of the Lady's slipper orchid (Cypripedium calceolus) in Scandinavia , taxonomic and conservational aspects

    Alexandre Antonelli
    The Lady's slipper orchid Cypripedium calceolus L. is considered one of the most beautiful orchids of Europe. Consequently, the species has suffered from over-collecting and is now critically endangered in many countries. Although pollination success is suspected to influence the long-term survival of Cypripedium calceolus, relatively little is known about the identity of its pollinators in mainland Sweden , a region that comprises the largest European populations. In order to identify which species pollinate eight representative populations in mainland Sweden, we observed and sampled visitors to flowers using a standardized protocol. Specimens were identified and any pollen smear found on their body was examined for the presence of Cypripedium pollen. Nine species were recognized as effective pollen vectors (Andrena cineraria, A. carantonica, A. haemorrohoa, A. helvola, A. nigroaenea, A. praecox, Colletes cunicularius, Lasioglossum fratellum and L. fulvicorne), four of them for the first time in Scandinavia. This is the first time that a species of Colletes is reported to carry pollen of Cypripedium in this region. All but one specimens were females. Our results suggest a taxonomically heterogeneous pollinator fauna for Cypripedium calceolus and are discussed in light of the management of this species. [source]

    Pollination in Jacaranda rugosa (Bignoniaceae): euglossine pollinators, nectar robbers and low fruit set

    PLANT BIOLOGY, Issue 2 2009
    P. Milet-Pinheiro
    Abstract Nectar robbers access floral nectar in illegitimate flower visits without, in general, performing a pollination service. Nevertheless, their effect on fruit set can be indirectly positive if the nectar removal causes an incremental increase in the frequency of legitimate flower visits of effective pollinators, especially in obligate outcrossers. We studied pollination and the effect of nectar robbers on the reproductive fitness of Jacaranda rugosa, an endemic shrub of the National Park of Catimbau, in the Caatinga of Pernambuco, Brazil. Xenogamous J. rugosa flowers continuously produced nectar during the day at a rate of 1 ,l·h,1. Female and male Euglossa melanotricha were the main pollinators. Early morning flower visits substantially contributed to fruit set because stigmas with open lobes were almost absent in the afternoon. Ninety-nine per cent of the flowers showed damage caused by nectar robbers. Artificial addition of sugar water prolonged the duration of flower visits of legitimate flower visitors. Removal of nectar, simulating the impact of nectar robbers, resulted in shorter flower visits of euglossine bees. While flower visits of nectar-robbing carpenter bees (Xylocopa frontalis, X. grisescens, X. ordinaria) produced only a longitudinal slit in the corolla tube in the region of the nectar chamber, worker bees of Trigona spinipes damaged the gynoecium in 92% of the flowers. This explains the outstandingly low fruit set (1.5%) of J. rugosa in the National Park of Catimbau. [source]

    Pollination by deceit in Paphiopedilum barbigerum (Orchidaceae): a staminode exploits the innate colour preferences of hoverflies (Syrphidae)

    PLANT BIOLOGY, Issue 1 2009
    J. Shi
    Abstract Paphiopedilum barbigerum T. Tang et F. T. Wang, a slipper orchid native to southwest China and northern Vietnam, produces deceptive flowers that are self-compatible but incapable of mechanical self-pollination (autogamy). The flowers are visited by females of Allograpta javana and Episyrphus balteatus (Syrphidae) that disperse the orchid's massulate pollen onto the receptive stigmas. Measurements of insect bodies and floral architecture show that the physical dimensions of these two fly species correlate with the relative positions of the receptive stigma and dehiscent anthers of P. barbigerum. These hoverflies land on the slippery centralised wart located on the shiny yellow staminode and then fall backwards through the labellum entrance. They are temporarily trapped in the inflated chamber composed of the interconnected labellum and column. The attractive staminode of P. barbigerum strongly reflects the colour yellow (500,560 nm), a colour preferred innately by most pollen-eating members of the Syrphidae. No scent molecules were detected using GC mass spectrometry analysis, showing that the primary attractant in this system is visual, not olfactory. Pollination-by-deceit in P. barbigerum is contrasted with its congener, P. dianthum, a brood site mimic that is pollinated by ovipositing females of E. balteatus. As the natural rate of fruit set in P. barbigerum (mean 26.3% pooled over three seasons) is lower than that of P. dianthum (mean 58.5% over two seasons), the evolution of false brood sites in some Paphiopedilum spp. should be selectively advantageous as they may provide an increase in the attention and return rates of dependable pollinators to flowers that always lack a reward. [source]

    Manipulation of in vivo pollination techniques to improve the fertilization efficiency of interspecies crosses in the genus Phaseolus

    PLANT BREEDING, Issue 2 2007
    V. Gurusamy
    Abstract Phaseolus angustissimus A. Gray contains genes for traits of interest for dry bean (P. vulgaris) breeders. F1 hybrids can be produced but introgression through backcrossing has been a problem. One of the main impediments is the time required between pollination and fertilization when F1 hybrids of P. vulgaris/P. angustissimus are backcrossed with P. vulgaris. In an attempt to reduce this time, the effect of alternative pollination techniques was studied. The rate and the time of fertilization were ascertained using three different pollen types (pollen germinated in vitro, fresh pollen (FP) mixed in pollen-germinating media and FP), and two methods of pollination (cut-style and stigmatic pollinations). An optimal in vitro pollen germination medium for Phaseolus pollen was developed. Low temperatures (6,9°C) were demonstrated to be necessary for Phaseolus pollen germination. Pollination using a cut-style technique coupled with pregerminated pollen reduced the time for fertilization in the backcrosses of interspecies hybrids by approximately 28 h. This technique improved the success rate of fertilization in wide crosses of Phaseolus designed to introgress genes from wild relatives. [source]

    Passerine Pollination of Rhodoleia championii (Hamamelidaceae) in Subtropical China

    BIOTROPICA, Issue 3 2010
    Lei Gu
    ABSTRACT The pollination ecology and breeding system of the Hamamelidaceae tree species Rhodoleia championii were studied in an evergreen broad-leaved forest in Nankunshan National Forest in Guangdong Province in China. Rhodoleia championii produces lipid-rich pollen grains and dilute nectar (averaging 0.7 mL/d and 9% sugar), with nectar production peaking before 0800 h; the species is self-incompatible and does not set seed asexually. Seven species of nectar-foraging birds visited the inflorescences, with the most common visitors being Japanese white-eyes (Zosterops japonicus, Zosteropidae) and fork-tailed sunbirds (Aethopyga christinae, Nectariniidae). Bumblebees and honeybees played limited roles as pollinators. As documented by fossils from Europe, the Rhodoleia stem lineage dates back at least to the Paleocene. Bird pollination, however, is unlikely to have evolved before the Oligocene when sunbirds arrived in Europe, and pollination by Z. japonicus cannot be much older than 250,000 million years ago, when Z. japonicus diverged from its closest relative. [source]

    Changes in Sexual Expression as Result of Defoliation and Environment in a Monoecious Shrub in Mexico: Implications for Pollination

    BIOTROPICA, Issue 4 2009
    Gerardo Arceo-Gómez
    ABSTRACT Folivory may indirectly impact plant reproduction through changes in sexual expression (i.e., number or proportion of male and female flowers produced), which influence plant,pollinator interactions via changes in pollinator preference or efficiency. This study is an experimental evaluation of the effect that defoliation has on sex expression in the monoecious shrub Cnidoscolus aconitifolius, how such effect varies across sites, as well as how such changes indirectly affect pollinator visitation rates. The present study used three populations of C. aconitifolius, each one located in a different site in Yucatán (México): pasture, deciduous forest and subdeciduous medium height forest and three levels of defoliation: 50 percent, 100 percent, and a control (no damage). Results showed that defoliation reduced significantly the total number of male flowers produced in two of the sites. Defoliation did not impact female flower production or the proportion of female flowers produced. Finally, floral visit rates were not affected by defoliation via changes in sexual expression and neither by site or by the interaction site × defoliation. Findings showed that defoliation had an effect on sex expression in C. aconitifolius, although apparently this change did not affect the plant,pollinator interactions. [source]

    Bird Pollination of Explosive Flowers While Foraging for Nectar and Caterpillars,

    BIOTROPICA, Issue 5 2006
    Kayna Agostini
    ABSTRACT Mucuna (Fabaceae) has explosive flowers that open only if a pressure is applied on their wings and keel. The cacique Cacicus haemorrhous inserts its bill into a flower and spreading its mandibles apart it opens the flower to take nectar. This icterine bird also preys upon caterpillars of the butterfly Astraptes talus that pupates within the flowers. Foraging with use of bill movements to take nectar or insects within a flower is an adequate mechanism to open and pollinate explosive flowers. We suggest that a plausible behavioral scenario for the pollination relationship between icterines and Mucuna -like flowers might start with the birds' searching for insects within flowers. RESUMEN El género Mucuna (Fabaceae) tiene flores explosivas que abren cuando se aplica una presión sobre sus alas o quillas. El boyero cacique, Cacicus haemorrhous, introduce su pico dentro de la flor y expande sus mandibulas abriendo la flor para beber el néctar. Esta ave Icterinae también depreda larvas de la mariposa Astraptes talus, la cual empupa dentro de las flores. El forrajeo con uso de movimientos del pico, para consumir el néctar o de insectos dentro de una flor, es un mecanismo adecuado para abrir y polinizar las flores explosivas. Sugerimos que este es un escenario comportamental razonable para la relación de la polinización entre especies de Icterinae y flores del tipo Mucuna, que podría iniciar con la búsqueda de las aves por insectos dentro de las flores. [source]

    Sex in Space: Pollination among Spatially Isolated Plants

    BIOTROPICA, Issue 2 2004
    Jaboury Ghazoul
    ABSTRACT Plant distributions are changing at unprecedented rates, primarily due to habitat clearance and the spread of alien invasive species. Landscape pattern and local density can affect plant sexual processes, particularly those mediated by biotic vectors, by acting on the composition and behavior of pollinators and seed dispersers. Ecologists are now grappling with the likely effects of these altered processes on future forest composition as existing plant reproductive mutualisms break down or adjust to new spatial circumstances. Here, we introduce five papers that address pollinator responses and pollination outcomes in a variety of human-dominated landscapes and emphasize the need to better understand the dynamic nature of plant,pollinator interactions. [source]

    Permeability of receptive fig fruits and its effects on the re-emergence behaviour of pollinators

    1. Figs and pollinating fig wasps provide a model system for studying mutualism. The permeability of the syconium changes during receptivity or between seasons, which may affect the behaviour of pollinators. Fig fruits are permeable during receptivity, and in some species, pollinators can enter and re-emerge after oviposition/pollination. We studied the relationship between fig permeability and pollinator re-emergence behaviour with a functional dioecious fig, Ficus hispida and the obligate pollinator Ceratosolen solmsi marchali. 2. The relationship reflects the interaction of figs and pollinators in the mutualism and also the conflicts of interests between the two partners: figs benefit from the enclosed fig fruits which have low permeability, but pollinators benefit from their re-emergence behaviour, which requires high fig permeability. 3. The results showed that at the end of receptivity, the permeability of fig fruits lowered rapidly with changes to the ostiole structures, and re-emergence rate was low, with more re-emerging pollinators trapped in the ostiolar bracts. Our results also showed that in the rainy season, the length of receptivity was shorter and fig permeability was lower. The re-emergence rates were also lower than those in the dry season. The results elucidated that figs' interests dominated in the conflicts between fig and pollinating wasp. 4. Based on a new criteria which employed the classification of pollinators found dead in the ostiolar bracts and which involved a survey of 6 monoecious and 12 dioecious fig species, we found that re-emergence behaviour was prevalent among fig species, and was more prevalent in functional dioecious figs than monoecious ones. [source]

    Shade-Coffee Plantations as Refuges for Tropical Wild Orchids in Central Veracruz, Mexico

    biología reproductiva; epifitas vasculares; estratificación vertical; estructura poblacional; limitación de polinizador Abstract:,In central Veracruz, Mexico, coffee plantations have replaced large areas of lower montane cloud forest. Shade-coffee plantations with high levels of structural diversity provide refuge for forest-dependent biota (e.g., birds and insects). Orchids typical of natural forest may also be found in the canopy of shade-coffee agroecosystems. It is not known, however, whether these are relicts from the original forest vegetation or if the plantations themselves provide the necessary conditions to support a self-sustained orchid population. We studied the population structure of the epiphytic orchids Jacquiniella teretifolia (Sw.) Britton & Willson, Scaphyglottis livida (Lindl.) Schltr., and Maxillaria densa Lindl. in a shade-coffee plantation (commercial polyculture) in central Veracruz. We also studied the previously undescribed reproductive biology of the latter two species. Our results show that the three orchid species had high population densities (>800 plants/ha). In our study site, 50% to 68% of the orchid plants of the target species were young individuals (less than five shoots). Reproductive structures were present in 80% of individuals larger than 30 shoots in the three species. M. densa is self-incompatible, and the fruit set obtained from cross pollination (42.7%) was higher than that obtained from natural pollination (18.2%), suggesting that this species could be pollinator limited. S. livida is autocompatible, not autogamous, and was not pollinator limited. Our results show that the coffee plantation had abundant orchid populations with log-normal size/age structures. Two of the target species, M. densa and S. livida, depend on pollinators to reproduce. It is clear that pollinators that allow orchids to set a high proportion of fruits persist in shade-coffee plantations. Coffee plantations may not replace the original conditions of a forest, but it is possible that these and other orchid species survive and reproduce in coffee plantations that provide appropriate microclimate conditions for the plants, including pollinators. Resumen:,En el centro de Veracruz, México, las plantaciones de café han reemplazado a extensas áreas de bosque nublado montano. Las plantaciones cafetaleras de sombra con altos niveles de diversidad estructural proporcionan refugio a biota dependiente de bosques (e. g., aves e insectos). En el dosel de agroecosistemas de café de sombra también se pueden encontrar orquídeas típicas de bosques naturales. Sin embargo, no se conoce si son relictos de la vegetación del bosque original o si las plantaciones mismas proporcionan los recursos necesarios para soportar a una población de orquídeas auto sostenida. Estudiamos la estructura de la población de orquídeas epifitas Jacquiniella teretifolia (Sw.) Britton & Willson, Scaphyglottis livida (Lindl.) Schltr y Maxillaria densa Lindl en una plantación de café de sombra (policultivo comercial) en el centro de Veracruz. También estudiamos la biología reproductiva, no descrita previamente, de las últimas dos especies. Nuestros resultados muestran que las tres especies de orquídea tuvieron densidades poblacionales altas (>800 plantas/ha). En nuestro sitio de estudio, entre 50% y 68% de las plantas de las especies estudiadas eran individuos jóvenes (menos de cinco rebrotes). En las tres especies hubo presencia de estructuras reproductivas en 80% de los individuos con más de 30 rebrotes. M. densa es auto incompatible, y el conjunto de frutos obtenido por polinización cruzada (42.7%) fue mayor que el obtenido por polinización natural (18.2%), lo que sugiere que esta especie puede estar limitada por polinizadores. S. livida es autocompatible no autogama, y no fue limitada por polinizadores. Nuestros resultados muestran que la plantación de café tenía poblaciones de orquídeas abundantes con estructuras tamaño/edad log normales. Dos de las especies, M. densa y S. livida, dependen de polinizadores para su reproducción. Es claro que los polinizadores que permiten una alta proporción de frutos a las orquídeas persisten en las plantaciones. Puede que las plantaciones de café no sustituyan las condiciones originales de un bosque, pero es posible que estas, y otras, especies de orquídeas sobrevivan y se reproduzcan en plantaciones de café que proporcionen condiciones microclimáticas adecuadas, incluyendo polinizadores, para las plantas. [source]


    John Watson
    The species of Tropaeolum sect. Chilensia Sparre, are discussed. Their phytogeography, ecology, evolution and pollination are considered. Photographs of habitats, and of most of the species taken in the wild, are shown. A synopsis of all the species in the section, and a new arrangement of subsections is provided. [source]

    Conifers as invasive aliens: a global survey and predictive framework

    David M. Richardson
    ABSTRACT We summarize information on naturalized and invasive conifers (class Pinopsida) worldwide (data from 40 countries, some with remote states/territories), and contrast these findings with patterns for other gymnosperms (classes Cycadopsida, Gnetopsida and Ginkgoopsida) and for woody angiosperms. Eighty conifer taxa (79 species and one hybrid; 13% of species) are known to be naturalized, and 36 species (6%) are ,invasive'. This categorization is based on objective and conservative criteria relating to consistency of reproduction, distance of spread from founders, and degree of reliance on propagules from the founder population for persistence in areas well outside the natural range of species. Twenty-eight of the known invasive conifers belong to one family (Pinaceae) and 21 of these are in one genus (Pinus). The Cupressaceae (including Taxodiaceae) has six known invasive species (4%) in four genera, but the other four conifer families have none. There are also no known invasive species in classes Cycadopsida, Gnetopsida or Ginkgoopsida. No angiosperm family comprising predominantly trees and shrubs has proportionally as many invasive species as the Pinaceae. Besides the marked taxonomic bias in favour of Pinaceae, and Pinus in particular, invasiveness in conifers is associated with a syndrome of life-history traits: small seed mass (< 50 mg), short juvenile period (< 10 year), and short intervals between large seed crops. Cryptomeria japonica, Larix decidua, Picea sitchensis, Pinus contorta, Pinus strobus, and Pseudotsuga menziesii exemplify this syndrome. Many rare and endangered conifer species exhibit opposite characters. These results are consistent with earlier predictions made using a discriminant function derived from attributes of invasive and noninvasive Pinus species. Informative exceptions are species with small seeds (< 4 mg, e.g. Chamaecyparis spp., Pinus banksiana, Tsuga spp. , mostly limited to wet/mineral substrates) or otherwise ,non-invasive' characters (e.g. large seeds, fleshy fruits, e.g. Araucaria araucana, Pinus pinea, Taxus baccata that are dependent on vertebrates for seed dispersal). Most conifers do not require coevolved mutualists for pollination and seed dispersal. Also, many species can persist in small populations but have the genetic and reproductive capacity to colonize and increase population size rapidly. The underlying mechanisms mediating conifer invasions are thus easier to discern than is the case for most angiosperms. Further information is needed to determine the extent to which propagule pressure (widespread dissemination, abundant plantings, long history of cultivation) can compensate for low ,inherent invasiveness'. [source]

    Towards an understanding of the mechanisms of tolerance: compensating for herbivore damage by enhancing a mutualism

    Sharon Y. Strauss
    Abstract. 1. Traditionally, losses in plant fitness or yield resulting from insect damage have been redressed by reducing pest populations using insecticides or biocontrol; these approaches rely on the untested assumption that reduced plant fitness or yield is caused by diminished resources available to damaged plants. 2. By experimentally manipulating pollination and damage levels independently, it is shown that pollination, as well as lack of resources, may be limiting to damaged plants in a model insect-pollinated crop, cantaloupe. 3. With enhanced pollination, damaged plants produce as much fruit as undamaged plants, even under high damage levels. In contrast, damaged plants without supplemental pollination produced significantly less fruit than undamaged plants. 4. This approach is unique in shifting the focus away from reducing pest populations and toward enhancing mutualistic interactions. It avoids risks posed by insecticides (which also kill pollinators) and by biocontrol agents, known threats to native species. 5. Determining the mechanism underlying compensation sheds light on recovery from insect damage in both natural and managed systems. These results have a bearing on managing native plant populations suffering from pollinator declines. 6. Finally, it may be predicted that resources could limit tolerance to herbivore damage in resource-poor or high competition environments, whereas pollination may limit tolerance when resource levels are high. [source]

    Pollinator genetics and pollination: do honey bee colonies selected for pollen-hoarding field better pollinators of cranberry Vaccinium macrocarpon?

    James H. Cane
    Summary 1. Genetic polymorphisms of flowering plants can influence pollinator foraging but it is not known whether heritable foraging polymorphisms of pollinators influence their pollination efficacies. Honey bees Apis mellifera L. visit cranberry flowers for nectar but rarely for pollen when alternative preferred flowers grow nearby. 2. Cranberry flowers visited once by pollen-foraging honey bees received four-fold more stigmatic pollen than flowers visited by mere nectar-foragers (excluding nectar thieves). Manual greenhouse pollinations with fixed numbers of pollen tetrads (0, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32) achieved maximal fruit set with just eight pollen tetrads. Pollen-foraging honey bees yielded a calculated 63% more berries than equal numbers of non-thieving nectar-foragers, even though both classes of forager made stigmatic contact. 3. Colonies headed by queens of a pollen-hoarding genotype fielded significantly more pollen-foraging trips than standard commercial genotypes, as did hives fitted with permanently engaged pollen traps or colonies containing more larvae. Pollen-hoarding colonies together brought back twice as many cranberry pollen loads as control colonies, which was marginally significant despite marked daily variation in the proportion of collected pollen that was cranberry. 4. Caloric supplementation of matched, paired colonies failed to enhance pollen foraging despite the meagre nectar yields of individual cranberry flowers. 5. Heritable behavioural polymorphisms of the honey bee, such as pollen-hoarding, can enhance fruit and seed set by a floral host (e.g. cranberry), but only if more preferred pollen hosts are absent or rare. Otherwise, honey bees' broad polylecty, flight range, and daily idiosyncrasies in floral fidelity will obscure specific pollen-foraging differences at a given floral host, even among paired colonies in a seemingly uniform agricultural setting. [source]

    The impact of an alien plant on a native plant,pollinator network: an experimental approach

    ECOLOGY LETTERS, Issue 7 2007
    Martha E. Lopezaraiza, Mikel
    Abstract Studies of pairwise interactions have shown that an alien plant can affect the pollination of a native plant, this effect being mediated by shared pollinators. Here we use a manipulative field experiment, to investigate the impact of the alien plant Impatiens glandulifera on an entire community of coflowering native plants. Visitation and pollen transport networks were constructed to compare replicated I. glandulifera invaded and I. glandulifera removal plots. Invaded plots had significantly higher visitor species richness, visitor abundance and flower visitation. However, the pollen transport networks were dominated by alien pollen grains in the invaded plots and consequently higher visitation may not translate in facilitation for pollination. The more generalized insects were more likely to visit the alien plant, and Hymenoptera and Hemiptera were more likely to visit the alien than Coleoptera. Our data indicate that generalized native pollinators can provide a pathway of integration for alien plants into native visitation systems. [source]

    Predation on mutualists can reduce the strength of trophic cascades

    ECOLOGY LETTERS, Issue 11 2006
    Tiffany M. Knight
    Abstract Ecologists have put forth several mechanisms to predict the strength of predator effects on producers (a trophic cascade). We suggest a novel mechanism , in systems in which mutualists of plants are present and important, predators can have indirect negative effects on producers through their consumption of mutualists. The strength of predator effects on producers will depend on their relative consumption of mutualists and antagonists, and on the relative importance of each to producer population dynamics. In a meta-analysis of experiments that examine the effects of predator reduction on the pollination and reproductive success of plants, we found that the indirect negative effects of predators on plants are quite strong. Most predator removal experiments measure the strength of predator effects on producers through the antagonist pathway; we suggest that a more complete understanding of the role of predators will be achieved by simultaneously considering the effects of predators on plant mutualists. [source]

    The area requirements of an ecosystem service: crop pollination by native bee communities in California

    ECOLOGY LETTERS, Issue 11 2004
    Claire Kremen
    Abstract Managing ecosystem services is critical to human survival, yet we do not know how large natural areas must be to support these services. We investigated how crop pollination services provided by native, unmanaged, bee communities varied on organic and conventional farms situated along a gradient of isolation from natural habitat. Pollination services from native bees were significantly, positively related to the proportion of upland natural habitat in the vicinity of farm sites, but not to any other factor studied, including farm type, insecticide usage, field size and honeybee abundance. The scale of this relationship matched bee foraging ranges. Stability and predictability of pollination services also increased with increasing natural habitat area. This strong relationship between natural habitat area and pollination services was robust over space and time, allowing prediction of the area needed to produce a given level of pollination services by wild bees within this landscape. [source]

    Perspectives of multi-modal contribution of honeybee resources to our life

    Hidehiro HOSHIBA
    Abstract The European honeybee, Apis mellifera, has been introduced to all continents and their products like honey, propolis, royal jelly and beeswax are well known. However, its contribution is not restricted to such direct products but extends into a much wider area. For example, the economic value of seed production by pollination exceeds the above-mentioned bee products. The application of F1 hybrid is increased to as much as 70% of commercial crops and flowers in Japan and honeybees are important pollinators in the F1 seed production. Incorporation into the large-scale biodiesel fuel production system by culturing rape and sunflower seeds etc. is relied on because it is good to construct possible zero-emission systems that reduce carbon dioxide and increase the rich by-products like honey and royal jelly. Bees' higher brain function and sophisticated social system of the colony opens new perspectives as a model system. Their individual ability to recognize even abstract concepts is comparable to that of higher primates. Rats or mice have no such ability. High performance learning ability of bees associated with proboscis extension reflex can be used to detect drugs at the airport. Function of the colony, on the other hand, is an excellent model for social physiology or a self-organization system. After the whole genome of A. mellifera was read in 2006 by the world consortium, consisting of more than 90 institutions from all over the world, many molecular biologists are coming into bee world. Nobody has yet succeeded in the challenge to make transgenic honeybee, so far, because of the difficulty in controlling the reproductive system headed by the queen. However, if someone succeeded in a breakthrough we will have stingless honeybees and a disease-resistant strain in the future. [source]

    Forecasting the Adoption of Genetically Modified Oilseed Rape Prognosen hinsichtlich der Einführung von gentechnisch verändertem Raps Prévisions sur l'adoption de colza transgénique

    EUROCHOICES, Issue 2 2009
    Gunnar Breustedt
    Summary Forecasting the Adoption of Genetically Modified Oilseed Rape We explore farmers' willingness to adopt genetically modified oilseed rape prior to its commercial release and estimate the ,demand' for the new technology. The analysis is based upon experiments with arable farmers in Germany who were asked to choose among conventional and GM rapeseed varieties with different characteristics. Our analysis has shown that ex ante GM adoption decisions are driven by profit expectations and personal as well as farm characteristics. Monetary and technological determinants such as the gross margin advantage of GM oilseed rape varieties, expected liability from cross pollination and restricted flexibility in returning to conventional oilseed rape growing affect the willingness to adopt GM rape in the expected directions. The results further indicate that neighbourhood effects and public attitudes matter a lot, such that individual farmers may not feel entirely free in their technology choice. Our demand simulations suggest that monopolistic seed prices would be set at between ,50 and ,100 per hectare, leaving farmers with a small share of the GM rent. This raises the question as to whether the farmers surveyed would actually benefit from the approval of GM rape varieties if the technology were to be provided by a single firm. Nous explorons le consentement des agriculteurs à utiliser du colza transgénique avant sa mise en marché et estimons la demande de cette nouvelle technologie. L'analyse se fonde sur des expériences menées auprès de cultivateurs allemands à qui l'on a demandé de choisir entre des variétés de colza conventionnelles et transgéniques aux caractéristiques différentes. Notre analyse a montré que les décisions a priori concernant l'adoption de variétés transgéniques sont fonction des profits attendus et des caractéristiques de l'agriculteur et de l'exploitation. Les facteurs financiers et technologiques comme les avantages des variétés de colza transgénique en termes de marge brute, ainsi que les risques possibles de fertilisation croisée et les contraintes relatives au retour vers des cultures de colza conventionnelles ont les effets attendus sur le consentement à adopter des variétés transgéniques. Les résultats montrent également que les effets de voisinage et l'attitude du public comptent beaucoup, de sorte que les agriculteurs individuels pourraient ne pas se sentir complètement libres de choisir leur technologie. Nos simulations sur la demande semblent indiquer que les prix des semences en situation de monopole seraient fixés entre 50 et 100 , par hectare, ce qui laisserait aux agriculteurs une faible part de la rente transgénique. Cela soulève la question de savoir si les agriculteurs de l'enquête tireraient vraiment avantage de l'approbation de variétés de colza transgéniques si la technologie n'était fournie que par une seule compagnie. Wir untersuchen die Bereitschaft von Landwirten, gentechnisch veränderten Raps einzuführen, bevor dieser auf den Markt gebracht wird, und schätzen die ,Nachfrage' nach dieser neuen Technologie ein. Unsere Analyse stützt sich auf Versuche mit Ackerbauern in Deutschland, bei denen sich die Landwirte zwischen herkömmlichen und gentechnisch veränderten Rapssorten mit verschiedenen Eigenschaften entscheiden mussten. Unsere Analyse zeigt, dass ex ante die Entscheidungen über die Einführung von gentechnisch verändertem Raps aufgrund von Gewinnerwartungen sowie von persönlichen und betrieblichen Charakteristika getroffen werden. Monetäre und technologische Bestimmungsgrößen wie z.B. der Vorsprung des gentechnisch veränderten Raps beim Deckungsbeitrag, die erwartete Haftbarkeit bei Fremdbestäubung sowie die nur eingeschränkte Flexibilität, zum herkömmlichen Rapsanbau zurückkehren zu können, beeinflussen erwartungsgemäß die Bereitschaft, gentechnisch veränderten Raps anzubauen. Desweiteren zeigen die Ergebnisse, dass Nachbarschaftseffekte und öffentliche Meinungen eine große Rolle spielen, so dass sich einige Landwirte womöglich bei der Wahl der Technologie in ihrer Entscheidungsfreiheit eingeschränkt fühlen. Unsere Nachfragesimulationen deuten darauf hin, dass sich monopolistische Saatgutpreise zwischen EUR 50 und EUR 100 pro Hektar bewegen würden, so dass den Landwirten ein kleiner Teil der ökonomischen Rente der GV-Technologie verbliebe. Dies wirft die Frage auf, ob die betrachteten Landwirte überhaupt von der Zulassung der gentechnisch veränderten Rapssorten profitieren würden, wenn die Technologie nur von einem einzigen Unternehmen angeboten würde. [source]


    EVOLUTION, Issue 8 2007
    Diane L. Marshall
    For sexual selection to be important in plants, it must occur at pollen load sizes typical of field populations. However, studies of the impact of pollen load size on pollen competition have given mixed results, perhaps because so few of these studies directly examined the outcome of mating when pollen load size was varied. We asked whether seed paternity after mixed pollination of wild radish was affected by pollen load sizes ranging from 22 to 220 pollen grains per stigma. We examined the seed siring abilities of 12 pollen donors across 11 maternal plants. Seed paternity was statistically indistinguishable across the pollen load sizes even though, overall, the pollen donors sired different numbers of seeds. This lack of effect of pollen load size on seed paternity may have occurred because fruit abortion and early abortion or failure of fertilization of seeds increased as load size decreased. Thus, failures of fruits and seeds sired by poorer pollen donors may keep seed paternity constant across pollen load sizes. [source]


    EVOLUTION, Issue 6 2000
    Manfred Ayasse
    Abstract The orchid Ophrys sphegodes Miller is pollinated by sexually excited males of the solitary bee Andrena nigroaenea, which are lured to the flowers by visual cues and volatile semiochemicals. In O. sphegodes, visits by pollinators are rare. Because of this low frequency of pollination, one would expect the evolution of strategies that increase the chance that males will visit more than one flower on the same plant; this would increase the number of pollination events on a plant and therefore the number of seeds produced. Using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analyses, we identified more than 100 compounds in the odor bouquets of labellum extracts from O. sphegodes; 24 compounds were found to be biologically active in male olfactory receptors based on gas chromatography with electroantennographic detection (GC-EAD). Gas chromatography (GC) analyses of odors from individual flowers showed less intraspecific variation in the odor bouquets of the biologically active compounds as compared to nonactive compounds. This can be explained by a higher selective pressure on the pollinator-attracting communication signal. Furthermore, we found a characteristic variation in the GC-EAD active esters and aldehydes among flowers of different stem positions within an inflorescence and in the n-alkanes and n-alkenes among plants from different populations. In our behavioral field tests, we showed that male bees learn the odor bouquets of individual flowers during mating attempts and recognize them in later encounters. Bees thereby avoid trying to mate with flowers they have visited previously, but do not avoid other flowers either of a different or the same plant. By varying the relative proportions of saturated esters and aldehydes between flowers of different stem positions, we demonstrated that a plant may take advantage of the learning abilities of the pollinators and influence flower visitation behavior. Sixty-seven percent of the males that visited one flower in an inflorescence returned to visit a second flower of the same inflorescence. However, geitonogamy is prevented and the likelihood of cross-fertilization is enhanced by the time required for the pollinium deposited on the pollinator to complete its bending movement, which is necessary for pollination to occur. Cross-fertilization is furthermore enhanced by the high degree of odor variation between plants. This variation minimizes learned avoidance of the flowers and increases the likelihood that a given pollinator would visit several to many different plants within a population. [source]

    Subaqueous hydrochory: open-channel hydraulic modelling of non-buoyant seed movement

    FRESHWATER BIOLOGY, Issue 11 2008
    Summary 1. Subaqueous transport may be a significant dispersal and migration mechanism of non-buoyant seeds of aquatic and riparian plants, and also secondary transport of seeds once they have lost buoyancy, but the efficiency of this difficult to observe process is largely unexamined. This study uses hydraulic modelling to establish the discharges that move the non-buoyant seeds of Hymenocallis coronaria as bedload or suspended load; uses stream gauge data to examine the frequency of effective discharges from late June to late September, the seed maturation and germination period; and the potential transport distance of the seeds. 2. The results show that the majority of non-buoyant seeds of H. coronaria can be transported as bedload through entire modelled stream reaches of lengths 10.8, 18 and 14.4 km with the 0.5 year return interval flow. Bedload apparently has the ability to move seeds over great distances, and may be a substantial factor determining the genetic structure, demography and dynamics of populations and communities. However, prolonged movement of non-buoyant seeds in suspension appears to be quite rare. 3. Although insect mediated pollination and biochory occur concurrently with bedload transport, bedload transport alone may be sufficient to account for the established gene flow rate of H. coronaria. The potential transport distance of many of the seeds exceed that between populations, and migration may occur more frequently than the species' generation time. 4. This is the first known study to use open-channel hydraulic modelling and sediment transport analysis to determine the effectiveness of non-buoyant seed transport. This method of analysis shows promise for application in other contexts, and especially where flow management is a critical issue for maintenance of rare species. [source]

    The aerodynamics and efficiency of wind pollination in grasses

    FUNCTIONAL ECOLOGY, Issue 4 2010
    James E. Cresswell
    Summary 1.,Under natural selection for sexual success, the reproductive organs of plants should evolve to become highly effective pollen receptors. Among wind-pollinated plants, larger reproductive structures appear counter-adapted to accumulate pollen by impaction on their windward surfaces, because airborne particles are less able to penetrate the thicker boundary layer of larger targets. Therefore, it has been proposed that wind-pollinated plants with pollen receptors on relatively large structures, like some grasses (family Poaceae), are architecturally adapted to create downstream vortices in which airborne pollen recirculates before accumulating on leeward surfaces. From this basis, the striking diversity among the grasses in the architecture of their flowering stems has been attributed in part to the existence of these contrasting mechanisms for effecting pollen receipt, namely impact collection and recirculatory collection. 2.,We investigated the relative importance of impact and recirculatory collection in grasses by analysing a model system in silico using Computational Fluid Dynamics and by conducting in vivo experiments, both in a wind tunnel and outdoors, using two grass species with compact inflorescences, Alopecurus pratensis and Anthoxanthum odoratum. 3.,Irrespective of the experimental approach, we found that although pollen recirculated in the leeward eddies of inflorescences, over 95% of the accumulated pollen was collected by windward surfaces. 4.,In A. pratensis, the collection efficiency (proportion of oncoming pollen collected) was between 5% and 20%, depending on wind speed in the range 0·5,1·9 m s,1 and these levels conform to those predicted by a mechanistic model of impact collection. 5.,Our results demonstrate that grass species with larger inflorescences are, like those with smaller inflorescences, primarily impact collectors of airborne pollen, which suggests that dissimilar reproductive morphology among species cannot be attributed to differentiation in the mode of pollen capture and, instead, requires reference to other factors, such as the need to produce, protect and disperse seeds of different sizes in different environments. [source]

    Intraseasonal climate and habitat-specific variability controls the flowering phenology of high alpine plant species

    FUNCTIONAL ECOLOGY, Issue 2 2010
    Karl Hülber
    Summary 1. ,High alpine plants endure a cold climate with short growing seasons entailing severe consequences of an improper timing of development. Hence, their flowering phenology is expected to be rigorously controlled by climatic factors. 2. ,We studied ten alpine plant species from habitats with early and late melting snow cover for 2 years and compared the synchronizing effect of temperature sums (TS), time of snowmelt (SM) and photoperiod (PH) on their flowering phenology. Intraseasonal and habitat-specific variation in the impact of these factors was analysed by comparing predictions of time-to-event models using linear mixed-effects models. 3. ,Temperature was the overwhelming trigger of flowering phenology for all species. Its synchronizing effect was strongest at or shortly after flowering indicating the particular importance of phenological control of pollination. To some extent, this pattern masks the common trend of decreasing phenological responses to climatic changes from the beginning to the end of the growing season for lowland species. No carry-over effects were detected. 4. ,As expected, the impact of photoperiod was weaker for snowbed species than for species inhabiting sites with early melting snow cover, while for temperature the reverse pattern was observed. 5. ,Our findings provide strong evidence that alpine plants will respond quickly and directly to increasing temperature without considerable compensation due to photoperiodic control of phenology. [source]

    The importance of scent and nectar filters in a specialized wasp-pollination system

    FUNCTIONAL ECOLOGY, Issue 5 2009
    Adam Shuttleworth
    Summary 1.,Plants with open flowers and exposed nectar should attract a wide diversity of flower visitors, yet, for reasons that are not yet well understood, some plants with these ,generalist' floral traits have highly specialized pollination systems. 2.,We investigated this problem in the African milkweed Pachycarpus grandiflorus which has open flowers that produce copious amounts of exposed and concentrated nectar, yet is visited almost exclusively by spider-hunting wasps in the genus Hemipepsis. 3.,These wasps were the only visitors found to consistently carry pollinaria and a cage experiment showed that they are capable of successfully pollinating this plant. Furthermore, experimental hand-pollinations showed that P. grandiflorus is genetically self-incompatible and thus reliant on pollinators for seed set. 4.,We investigated the roles of chemical (nectar and floral scent) and spectral properties in the selective attraction of wasps and the filtering out of other potential flower visitors. Nectar palatability experiments showed that the nectar is unpalatable to honeybees but palatable to the wasps. Choice experiments conducted in the field and using a Y-maze in the laboratory showed that wasps are attracted primarily by scent rather than visual cues. Analysis of scent using Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry showed that these inflorescences produce 36 different compounds, mostly monoterpenes and aliphatics. Analysis of spectral reflectance showed that flowers have similar colouring to the background vegetation. 5.,We conclude that P. grandiflorus is specialized for pollination by Hemipepsis wasps, and in the absence of morphological filters, achieves specialization through unpalatable nectar, cryptic colouring and scent as a selective pollinator attractant. 6.,This study demonstrates that plants whose flowers are not morphologically adapted to exclude particular floral visitors can achieve specialization through non-morphological filters. [source]