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Title: Performance, Effectiveness, and Efficiency of Honeybees as Pollinators of Coffea arabica (Gentianales, Rubiaceae)
Authors: Hipólito, Juliana
Nunes, D. O.
Ángel-Coca, Catalina
Mahlmann, Thiago
Galetto, Leonardo
Viana, Blandina Felipe
Issue Date: 2020
metadata.dc.publisher.journal: Neotropical Entomology
metadata.dc.description.resumo: Studies in crop plants analyzing floral biology in conjunction with effectiveness and efficiency of pollinators on pollen transfer and fruit formation are not common, although they are essential to provide better management actions. On this base, we selected a farm in Bahia, Brazil, to study pollination on coffee plants (Coffea arabica L.). Specifically, we want to analyze if nectar traits influence visitor’s performance throughout flower lifetime and if honeybees (Apis mellifera scutellata Lepeletier, 1836) are effective and efficient for coffee pollination comparing fertilization and fructification among four experimental treatments: open (OP), wind (WP), cross (HCP), and single-visit bee pollination (SVBP). We found that honeybees collect both nectar and pollen from coffee flowers and transfer pollen on stigmas even after one visit. No differences were found among treatments regarding the number of pollen grains transferred on the stigmas (effectiveness). OP flowers showed a comparative lower efficiency (pollen tubes and fruit set) probably due to pollination failure as those flowers have a higher variability on the number of deposited pollen grains. Two of the treatments (HCP and SVBP) showed higher fertilization (measuring tubes until the end of the style). Pollen loads seem to be limited by a peak of pollen transference by pollinators, followed by the stabilization in the number of pollen grains deposited per stigma. Thus, reproduction of the coffee can be limited by the quality of pollen grains moved by pollinators instead of quantity. Management strategies should focus on monitoring bee density on plants for increasing pollen quality transfer on flowers trough maintaining the adequate proportions of seminatural habitats and/or the number of hives on agricultural fields according to the flowering of the crop. © 2020, Sociedade Entomológica do Brasil.
metadata.dc.identifier.doi: 10.1007/s13744-020-00785-8
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