Yearly fluctuations of flower landscape in a Mediterranean scrubland: Consequences for floral resource availability

(2018) Yearly fluctuations of flower landscape in a Mediterranean scrubland: Consequences for floral resource availability. . : -.
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Doi: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0191268

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Seasonal dynamics in a Cavity-Nesting beewasp community: Shifts in composition, functional diversity and host-parasitoid network structure

Osorio-Canadas S., Arnan X., Bassols E., Vicens N., Bosch J. (2018) Seasonal dynamics in a Cavity-Nesting beewasp community: Shifts in composition, functional diversity and host-parasitoid network structure. PLoS ONE. 13: 0-0.
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Doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0205854

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Ecological communities are composed of species that interact with each other forming complex interaction networks. Although interaction networks have been usually treated as static entities, interactions show high levels of temporal variation, mainly due to temporal species turnover. Changes in taxonomic composition are likely to bring about changes in functional trait composition. Because functional traits influence the likelihood that two species interact, temporal changes in functional composition and structure may ultimately affect interaction network structure. Here, we study the seasonality (spring vs. summer) in a community of cavity-nesting solitary bees and wasps ('hosts') and their nest associates ('parasitoids'). We analyze seasonal changes in taxonomic compostion and structure, as well as in functional traits, of the host and parasitoid communities. We also analyze whether these changes result in changes in percent parasitism and interaction network structure. Our host and parasitoid communities are strongly seasonal. Host species richness increases from spring to summer. This results in important seasonal changes in functional composition of the host community. The spring community (almost exclusively composed of bees) is characterized by large, univoltine, adult-wintering host species. The summer community (composed of both bees and wasps) is dominated by smaller, bivoltine, prepupa-wintering species. Host functional diversity is higher in summer than in spring. Importantly, these functional changes are not only explained by the addition of wasp species in summer. Functional changes in the parasitoid community are much less pronounced, probably due to the lower parasitoid species turnover. Despite these important taxonomic and functional changes, levels of parasitism did not change across seasons. Two network metrics (generality and interaction evenness) increased from spring to summer. These changes can be explained by the seasonal increase in species richness (and therefore network size). The seasonal shift from a bee-dominated community in spring to a wasp-dominated community in summer suggests a change in ecosystem function, with emphasis on pollination in spring to emphasis on predation in summer. © 2018 Osorio-Canadas et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Llegeix més

Body size phenology in a regional bee fauna: A temporal extension of Bergmann's rule

Osorio-Canadas, S., Arnan, X., Rodrigo, A., Torné-Noguera, A., Molowny, R., Bosch, J. (2016) Body size phenology in a regional bee fauna: A temporal extension of Bergmann's rule. Ecology Letters. : 0-0.
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Doi: 10.1111/ele.12687

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Local and landscape effects in a host-parasitoid interaction network along a forest-cropland gradient

Osorio S., Arnan X., Bassols E., Vicens N., Bosch J. (2015) Local and landscape effects in a host-parasitoid interaction network along a forest-cropland gradient. Ecological Applications. 25: 1869-1879.
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Doi: 10.1890/14-2476.1

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Land-use driven habitat modification is a major driver of biodiversity loss and impoverishment of interaction diversity. This may affect ecosystem services such as pollination and biological control. Our objective is to analyze the effects of local (nesting environment: farms vs. tree stands) and landscape (forest-cropland gradient) factors on the structure and composition of a cavity-nesting bee-wasp (CNBW) community, their nests associates (henceforth parasitoids), and their interactions. We set up 24 nest-trapping stations in a fragmented, extensively farmed area of ∼100 km2. We obtained 2035 nests containing 7572 brood cells representing 17 bee and 18 wasp species, attacked by 20 parasitoid species. Community structure and composition, as well as network structure, were much more dependent on local than on landscape factors. Host abundance and richness were higher in farms. In addition, host abundance was positively correlated to cropland cover. We also found highly significant differences between nesting environments in host community composition. Structure and composition of the parasitoid community were conditioned by the structure and composition of the host community. Network structure was affected by nesting environment but not by landscape factors. Interactions tended to be more diverse in farms. This result was mostly explained by differences in network size (greater in farms). However, generality was significantly higher in farms even after controlling for network size, indicating that differences in species' interaction patterns associated to differences in community composition between the two nesting environments are also affecting network structure. In conclusion, open habitats associated with extensively farmed exploitations favor local CNBW diversity (especially bees) and result in more complex host-parasitoid interaction networks in comparison to forested areas. The conservation value of this kind of open habitat is important in view of the progressive abandonment of extensively cultivated farmland taking place in Europe at the expense of agricultural intensification and reforestation. © 2015 by the Ecological Society of America.

Llegeix més

Pre-wintering conditions and post-winter performance in a solitary bee: Does diapause impose an energetic cost on reproductive success?

Sgolastra F., Arnan X., Pitts-Singer T.L., Maini S., Kemp W.P., Bosch J. (2015) Pre-wintering conditions and post-winter performance in a solitary bee: Does diapause impose an energetic cost on reproductive success?. Ecological Entomology. : 0-0.
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Doi: 10.1111/een.12292

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1. Diapause is a dynamic process of low metabolic activity that allows insects to survive periods of harsh conditions. Notwithstanding the lowered metabolism, and because diapausing insects have no access to food, diapause has an energetic cost that may affect post-diapause performance. 2. Previous studies on the solitary bee Osmia lignaria have shown that prolonged pre-wintering periods (the time during which individuals already in diapause remain at warm temperatures) are associated with elevated lipid consumption, fat body depletion, and body weight loss. The present study investigated whether prolonged pre-wintering also affects reproduction, i.e. whether the costs associated with diapause could have an effect on post-diapause performance in this species. 3. Females were exposed to a range of pre-wintering conditions, and ovary development and individual post-wintering performance were monitored throughout their adult life span. 4. No evidence of an effect of pre-wintering duration on post-diapause reproductive success was found. Expected differences in the timing of establishment were not observed because ovary maturation was, surprisingly, not arrested during pre-wintering. Prolonged pre-wintering duration did not result in decreased life span, probably because emerging females could rapidly replenish their metabolic reserves through feeding. However, there was a very strong effect of the duration of the pre-emergence period on the likelihood of nest establishment. 5. Longevity, the main factor determining fecundity in Osmia, is subjected to high levels of intrinsic variability, even among females of similar size exposed to identical conditions during development and nesting. © 2015 The Royal Entomological Society.

Llegeix més

Female reproductive success in gynodioecious Thymus vulgaris: Pollen versus nutrient limitation and pollinator foraging behaviour

Arnan X., Escola A., Rodrigo A., Bosch J. (2014) Female reproductive success in gynodioecious Thymus vulgaris: Pollen versus nutrient limitation and pollinator foraging behaviour. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 175: 395-408.
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Doi: 10.1111/boj.12173

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Gynodioecy is a dimorphic breeding system in which female individuals coexist with hermaphroditic individuals in the same population. Females only contribute to the next generation via ovules, and many studies have shown that they are usually less attractive than hermaphrodites to pollinators. Several mechanisms have been proposed to explain how females manage to persist in populations despite these disadvantages. The 'resource reallocation hypothesis' (RRH) states that females channel resources not invested in pollen production and floral advertisement towards the production of more and/or larger seeds. We investigated pollination patterns and tested the RRH in a population of Thymus vulgaris. We measured flower display, flower size, nectar production, visitation rates, pollinator constancy and flower lifespan in the two morphs. In addition, we measured experimentally the effects of pollen and resource addition on female reproductive success (fruit set, seed set, seed weight) of the two morphs. Despite lower investment in floral advertisement, female individuals were no less attractive to pollinators than hermaphrodites on a per flower basis. Other measures of pollinator behaviour (number of flowers visited per plant, morph preference and morph constancy) also showed that pollinators did not discriminate against female flowers. In addition, stigma receptivity was longer in female flowers. Accordingly, and contrary to most studies on gynodioecious species, reproductive success of females was not pollen limited. Instead, seed production was pollen limited in hermaphrodites, suggesting low levels of cross-pollination in hermaphrodites. Seed production was resource limited in hermaphrodites, but not in females, thus providing support for the RRH. © 2014 The Linnean Society of London.

Llegeix més

Determinants of spatial distribution in a bee community: Nesting resources, flower resources, and body size

Torne-Noguera A., Rodrigo A., Arnan X., Osorio S., Barril-Graells H., Da Rocha-Filho L.C., Bosch J. (2014) Determinants of spatial distribution in a bee community: Nesting resources, flower resources, and body size. PLoS ONE. 9: 0-0.
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Doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0097255

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Understanding biodiversity distribution is a primary goal of community ecology. At a landscape scale, bee communities are affected by habitat composition, anthropogenic land use, and fragmentation. However, little information is available on local-scale spatial distribution of bee communities within habitats that are uniform at the landscape scale. We studied a bee community along with floral and nesting resources over a 32 km2 area of uninterrupted Mediterranean scrubland. Our objectives were (i) to analyze floral and nesting resource composition at the habitat scale. We ask whether these resources follow a geographical pattern across the scrubland at bee-foraging relevant distances; (ii) to analyze the distribution of bee composition across the scrubland. Bees being highly mobile organisms, we ask whether bee composition shows a homogeneous distribution or else varies spatially. If so, we ask whether this variation is irregular or follows a geographical pattern and whether bees respond primarily to flower or to nesting resources; and (iii) to establish whether body size influences the response to local resource availability and ultimately spatial distribution. We obtained 6580 specimens belonging to 98 species. Despite bee mobility and the absence of environmental barriers, our bee community shows a clear geographical pattern. This pattern is mostly attributable to heterogeneous distribution of small (<55 mg) species (with presumed smaller foraging ranges), and is mostly explained by flower resources rather than nesting substrates. Even then, a large proportion (54.8%) of spatial variability remains unexplained by flower or nesting resources. We conclude that bee communities are strongly conditioned by local effects and may exhibit spatial heterogeneity patterns at a scale as low as 500-1000 m in patches of homogeneous habitat. These results have important implications for local pollination dynamics and spatial variation of plant-pollinator networks. © 2014 Torné-Noguera et al.

Llegeix més

Habitat determinants of abundance, structure and composition of flying Hymenoptera communities in mountain old-growth forests

Arnan X., Bosch J., Comas L., Gracia M., Retana J. (2011) Habitat determinants of abundance, structure and composition of flying Hymenoptera communities in mountain old-growth forests. Insect Conservation and Diversity. 4: 200-211.
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Doi: 10.1111/j.1752-4598.2010.00123.x

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1.Old-growth forests have features that endow them with an extraordinary ecological value. These forests are sources of habitat diversity and, consequently, biodiversity, which makes them a basic objective of conservation programs. Insects have been traditionally used as indicators of forest condition. 2.The aim of this study is to uncover patterns of Hymenoptera abundance and diversity, and their relationship with structural features in old-growth forests. We use pan traps to sample the community of flying Hymenoptera in two old-growth forest types (silver fir and mountain pine) with important structural differences. 3.Compared to other surveys of local Hymenoptera communities, our sampling yielded an extremely high number of species (630). 4.At the plot level, the two forest types showed important differences in family richness and diversity, but not in abundance or in species richness and diversity. However, variability in species richness was higher among pine than silver fir plots, leading to overall higher species richness in the former. 5.Species composition also differed between pine than silver fir forests, and these differences were related to important structural differences between the two forest types. 6.Canonical correspondence and multiple regression analysis yielded contrasting habitat requirements among Hymenoptera families and functional groups (bees, sawflies, parasitic wasps and predatory wasps). 7.We conclude that flying Hymenoptera communities can be used as good indicators of forest structure, habitat complexity and conservation status. © 2010 The Authors. Insect Conservation and Diversity © 2010 The Royal Entomological Society.

Llegeix més

Relación entre el grado de madurez del bosque y las comunidades de himenópteros voladores y micromamíferos en el Parque Nacional de Aiguestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici. En: Proyectos de investigación en parques nacionales: 2006-2009. L. Ramírez y B. A

Comas L, Arnan X, Gracia M, Retana J, Bosch J (2010) Relación entre el grado de madurez del bosque y las comunidades de himenópteros voladores y micromamíferos en el Parque Nacional de Aiguestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici. En: Proyectos de investigación en parques nacionales: 2006-2009. L. Ramírez y B. A sensio (Eds.). Organismo Autónomo de Parques Nacionales pp. 327-341.