|Appears in Collections:||Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles|
|Peer Review Status:||Refereed|
|Title:||Neonicotinoid pesticide limits improvement in buzz pollination by bumblebees|
|Author(s):||Whitehorn, Penelope R|
|Citation:||Whitehorn PR, Wallace C & Vallejo-Marin M (2017) Neonicotinoid pesticide limits improvement in buzz pollination by bumblebees, Scientific Reports, 7 (1), Art. No.: 15562.|
|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.|
|Rights:||This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.|
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