Pollen Collected and Foraging Activities of Frieseomelitta varia (Lepeletier) (Hymenoptera: Apidae) in an Urban Landscape

Kátia Paula Aleixo, Letícia Biral de Faria, Carlos Alberto Garófalo, Vera Lucia Imperatriz Fonseca, Cláudia Inês da Silva

Abstract


Cities provide resources for animal species that live within them or inhabit their surroundings. This has motivated an increase in ecological studies of urban areas, including the interactions between plants and pollinators. From March 2010 to February 2011, the flowering plants present in the study area, located at the Universidade de São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, were sampled to evaluate how floral sources were distributed throughout the year. Concurrently, worker bees with pollen loads were collected from four colonies of Frieseomelitta varia (Lepeletier, 1836) to identify the sources used by bees. Despite an increase in plant species abundance in July, plants were in bloom year-round and consequently, the production and supply of floral resources were continuous. The workers collected resources from 77 plant species, but only three were extensively exploited. Delonix regia (Leguminosae), Poincianella pluviosa (Leguminosae) and Ceiba speciosa (Malvaceae) accounted for 42% of total pollen grains quantified during the year, showing that F. varia intensify pollen collection at few sources at spatiotemporal scale. This study emphasizes the importance of native urban flora to maintain F. varia and other bee species. The list of plants presented in this study can be used in the design and planning of urban areas.

Keywords


food resource; pollen analysis; urban flora; social bees

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13102/sociobiology.v60i3.266-276

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