Biodiversity in West African parklands promotes pollination of shea

With demand on shea parklands increasing, Aoife Delaney and colleagues explore the pollination services to shea and how we can better support this resource of both ecological and economic importance. Their new research was recently published in Journal of Applied Ecology. Shea parklands occupy over 1 million km2 in the Sudano-Sahelian semi-arid zone of sub-Saharan Africa, from Senegal in the west to Uganda in the … Continue reading Biodiversity in West African parklands promotes pollination of shea

A new threat to native bumblebees

In their recently published article, Bartomeus et al. show how the commercial bumblebee trade is affecting the genetic integrity of native pollinators. Here the authors provide a summary of their work. Bees, especially bumblebees, are threatened by human-induced rapid environmental change such as habitat loss, exotic pathogens and global warming. But some species are more resilient than others. This is the case for the buff-tailed … Continue reading A new threat to native bumblebees

Bee pollen reveals how multiple threats could contribute to bee decline

Recent research from Centrella et al. shows the effects agriculture and associated pesticides are having on bees in terms of both their diets and the offspring they produce. Here they discuss their findings. Threats to bee pollinators such as land use change, high pesticide use, and reduced floral diet diversity are usually assessed independently, even though we know that bees face these threats simultaneously in … Continue reading Bee pollen reveals how multiple threats could contribute to bee decline

Cover stories: celebrating the beauty of pollinators

This month’s Journal of Applied Ecology cover shows a foraging male Habropoda tarsata. Photographer, David Kleijn shares the joy of rediscovering your passion for your study species. These days when we talk and write about pollinators, it is often in the context of their role as providers of pollination services. Pollinators are important for maintaining the production of the insect-pollinated crops that provide most of … Continue reading Cover stories: celebrating the beauty of pollinators

Editor’s Choice 57:03 – The economic implications of pollination by bats

For our March Editor’s Choice, Michael Pocock (Associate Editor) highlights the importance of recent research by Tremlett et al into pollination by bats and the value this brings to communities in Mexico. The slideshow above of images by César Guzmánr shows the journey of the pitaya fruit, for which bats are of key importance, from growth to market. One of the reoccurring themes in applied … Continue reading Editor’s Choice 57:03 – The economic implications of pollination by bats

Loss of bumblebees is a loss to farmers 

New research by Néstor Pérez‐Méndez et al. highlights the economic implications of declining pollinator species. Here the authors summarise their work. Recent expansion and intensification of agriculture to meet growing food demands is among the main drivers of the alarming loss of insect diversity worldwide. This decline can lead to a marked degradation of the ecosystem services that insects provide, such as pollination or regulation of crop … Continue reading Loss of bumblebees is a loss to farmers 

Why bats matter when it comes to pollination

In their recently published article, Tremlett et al. call for greater management focus for wild bat pollinator populations due to the ecosystem services they provide for valuable crops. Here they share a video of bat feeding in action and explain a little more about their work. *Update March 2020. The corresponding article to this video features as the Editor’s Choice for issue 57:03. Read Associate … Continue reading Why bats matter when it comes to pollination

Conservando flores conservamos polinizadores?

An English version of this post is available here. La mayoría de los esfuerzos para promover la conservación de polinizadores están enfocados en mantener o incrementar el rango de plantas con flores disponibles para ellos. La razón es simple: las plantas con flores proveen néctar y polen, recursos esenciales para su subsistencia. Sin embargo, los polinizadores dependen de otros recursos que probablemente también determinan su … Continue reading Conservando flores conservamos polinizadores?

Are flowers enough for preserving pollinators?

Research from Buckles and Harmon-Threatt explores how prairie management strategies can affect pollinator communities both directly and indirectly, highlighting why we shouldn’t ignore what’s happening below ground. Associate Editor, Guadalupe Peralta elaborates. A Spanish version of this post is available here. Most efforts to preserve pollinators are focused on maintaining or increasing the range of flowering plants available. The reason behind this is clear: flowers … Continue reading Are flowers enough for preserving pollinators?

Protecting pollinators through better road verge management

In their recent study, Ben Phillips and colleagues reveal the importance of road verges as habitats for pollinators, as well as the negative impacts of current management actions. But how can we improve the situation? Most of us spend a good part of our days travelling on roads. The remains of the animals that stare back at us from the asphalt – the victims of … Continue reading Protecting pollinators through better road verge management