10.5445/IR/1000077375

Neonicotinoid pesticide limits improvement in buzz pollination by bumblebees

Abstract

Neonicotinoid pesticides have been linked to global declines of beneficial insects such as bumblebees. Exposure to trace levels of these chemicals causes sub-lethal effects, such as reduced learning and foraging efficiency. Complex behaviours may be particularly vulnerable to the neurotoxic effects of neonicotinoids. Such behaviours may include buzz pollination (sonication), in which pollinators, usually bees, use innate and learned behaviours to generate high-frequency vibrations to release pollen from flowers with specialised anther morphologies. This study assesses the effect of field-realistic, chronic exposure to the widely-used neonicotinoid thiamethoxam on the development of sonication buzz characteristics over time, as well as the collection of pollen from buzz-pollinated flowers. We found that the pollen collection of exposed bees improved less with increasing experience than that of unexposed bees, with exposed bees collecting between 47% and 56% less pollen by the end of 10 trials. We also found evidence of two distinct strategies for maximising pollen collection: (1) extensions to the duration of individual buzzes and (2) extensions of the overall time spent buzzing. We find new complexities in buzz pollination, and conclude that the impacts of field-realistic exposure to a neonicotinoid pesticide may seriously compromise this important ecosystem service

Similar works

Full text

KITopenProvided a free PDF (195.62 KB)

1000077375oai:EVASTAR-Karlsruhe.de:1000077375
Last time updated on May 7, 2019View original full text link

This paper was published in KITopen.

Having an issue?

Is data on this page outdated, violates copyrights or anything else? Report the problem now and we will take corresponding actions after reviewing your request.