Navigation Links
Killer bees may increase food supplies for native bees
Date:10/1/2009

Aggressive African bees were accidentally released in Brazil in 1957. As "killer bees" spread northward, David Roubik, staff scientist at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, began a 17-year study that revealed that Africanized bees caused less damage to native bees than changes in the weather and may have increased the availability of their food plants.

Scientists feared that dangerous swarms of Africanized bees would compete with native bees. Roubik took on the daunting task of sorting out the role of invading pollinators in tropical forests. In 1988, he set up bee traps in Sian Ka'an Biosphere Reservea vast area of mature tropical rainforest in Quintana Roo state on the Mexican Yucatanwith Rogel Villanueva-Gutirrez, professor at the Colegio de la Frontera del Sur in Mexico. Africanized bees arrived in 1989.

"Our long view of the invasion shows that bees maintain higher-order evolutionary relationships with plants despite ups and downs in bee species within families," said Roubik. "Evolutionary relationships between bees and flowers, along with their flowering schedules, may be the fundamental currency that maintains this community."

Pollen from each plant species has a unique shape. Researchers compared pollen on bees in traps to pollen from flowers in the forest to determine which plants the bees were visiting.

Over the next 17 years, a severe drought and three hurricanes devastated native bees, but their populations rebounded each time. Africanized bees took over pollination of two plant families that had been important food sources for native bees: the cashew family and the spurge family. However, Pouteria, one of the plants native bees prefer, became more common. A few rare species of bees disappeared from traps later in the study.

Roubik cautions that native populations in less diverse areas might be less resilient to invasions. "Basically we're seeing 'scramble competition' as bees replace a lost source of pollen with pollen from a related plant species that has a similar flowering peakin less-biodiverse, unprotected areas, bees would not have the same range of options to turn to."


'/>"/>

Contact: Beth King
kingb@si.edu
703-487-3770 x8216
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Watermelons hidden killer
2. Scientists link immune systems natural killer cells to infant liver disease
3. Termite killer lingers as a potent greenhouse gas
4. Interventional treatment can be recommended as first-line treatment for silent killer
5. Frogs immune system is key in fight against killer virus
6. Shades of 1918? New study compares avian flu with a notorious killer from the past
7. Older killer whales make the best mothers
8. Brown chemist finds gray molds killer gene
9. Wistar scientists find key to keeping killer T cells in prime shape for fighting infection, cancer
10. Cancer cell bodyguard turned into killer
11. Abuse of painkillers can predispose adolescents to lifelong addiction
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Killer bees may increase food supplies for native bees
(Date:3/24/2017)... , Mar 24, 2017 Research and Markets ... System Market Analysis & Trends - Industry Forecast to 2025" ... ... grow at a CAGR of around 15.1% over the next decade ... industry report analyzes the market estimates and forecasts for all the ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... 23, 2017 Research and Markets has announced ... & Trends - Industry Forecast to 2025" report to their ... The ... CAGR of around 8.8% over the next decade to reach approximately ... the market estimates and forecasts for all the given segments on ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... March 21, 2017 Optimove , ... by retailers such as 1-800-Flowers and AdoreMe, today ... Recommendations and Replenishment. Using Optimove,s machine learning algorithms, ... product and replenishment recommendations to their customers based ... predictions of customer intent drawn from a complex ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/23/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Bacterial biofilms, surface adherent communities of bacteria that are encased ... food poisoning and catheter infections to gum disease and the rejection of medical implants. ... dollars per year, there is currently a paucity of means for preventing their formation ...
(Date:5/22/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... May 22, 2017 , ... ... today that it is exhibiting in booth B2 at the Association for ... May 22-25. , In addition to demonstrating its Cancer Diagnostic Cockpit and ...
(Date:5/18/2017)... ... May 18, 2017 , ... Dr. Ralph ... at the Prince Of Wales Private Hospital. The procedure was performed on a ... patient failed conservative treatments prior to undergoing surgery. , The AxioMed viscoelastic disc ...
(Date:5/18/2017)... ... May 17, 2017 , ... Cognition Corporation ... has just released version 9.0 of the Cognition Cockpit platform. , “Our whole ... says David Cronin, CEO of Cognition. “We’re thrilled to finally be able to ...
Breaking Biology Technology: