Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

2128Anthophora as a tameable species for agriculture

Expand Messages
  • Sam Droege
    Apr 22, 2012
    • 0 Attachment
      Anothophora plumipes was introduced in the 1980s as a possible agricultural pollinator to Beltsville, Maryland about 1 mile from my lab.   They nest in clay banks in the wild and can be made to nest in adobe or clay blocks which could be transported to fields or simply built in place.    I am not sure that any work has been done with the species in terms of its agricultural pollination potential here in North America, likely due to the fact that it is only recently that their populations have become substantial.  Suzanne Batra retired almost 10 years ago now.

      It is interesting to note that the native Antophora abrupta also nests in the same situations but only comes out in this region in late May while A. plumipes comes out from late March to early April.  

      While there has been a lot of work in creating nesting sites for hole nesting bees that occupy drilled holes or the internodes of grasses, nothing to almost nothing (I am hedging my bets here) has been done with clay nesting species in North America.  However, one only has to visit the few traditional adobe structures remaining or the newer strawbale/cob structures that have been plastered with adobe to see that we have a  suite of clay nesting species that can aggregate in large numbers and are therefore amenable to manipulation and even transport to crop fields.  

      While potentially useful in that they aggregate and can occupy man-made structures, a bigger question would be to investigate what crops they would be most useful for in pollinating.  I have seen A. plumipes on a variety of blooming woody plants regionally, but have little understanding of where A. abrupta goes to get pollen (other than the prickly pear plants on my property).

      A. plumipes habit of coming out very early in the spring, ability to nest in transportable blocks, and what appears to be its general nature to gather pollen from woody plants make it a candidate for Almond pollination.   On the dark side is the fact that it is a non-native species and its downstream impacts to our native fauna and flora have not be evaluated...though, the opportunity is there since it is rapidly increasing and could be investigated as it invades from its Maryland epicenter.

      Below are collection dates from our database for A. plumipes
      20030402
      20030327
      20040415
      20050509
      20050415
      20050425
      20050509
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050411
      20050425
      20050425
      20050425
      20050425
      20050418
      20050413
      20050413
      20050413
      20050425
      20050405
      20050329
      20060416
      20060416
      20060416
      20060421
      20070329
      20090327
      20090327
      20090327
      20090327
      20090405
      20090405
      20090417
      20090416
      20070524
      20100425
      20100425
      20100425
      20100425
      20110319
      20110418
      20110418
      20110418
      20110420
      20110420
      20110420
      20110420
      20110413
      20110330
      20110429
      20110429
      20110429
      20110410
      20110410
      20110410
      20110429
      20110429
      20110510
      20100422
      20110427

      Here are the dates for A. abrupta

      20060619
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20060602
      20070611
      20070607
      20080615
      20080616
      20080616
      20080616
      20080616
      20080616
      20090530
      20090628
      20090522
      20070607
      20100518
      20100601
      20100601
      20110527
      20110527
      20110603

      sam

      Sam Droege  sdroege@...                      
      w 301-497-5840 h 301-390-7759 fax 301-497-5624
      USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
      BARC-EAST, BLDG 308, RM 124 10300 Balt. Ave., Beltsville, MD  20705
      Http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov

      Vernal Equinox


      Dusk. A muddy path above the river.
      Osoberries blooming. Cottonwoods budding.
      Pockets of warm air lingering under willows.
      Rank odors of algae and fish.


      Ground fog settles in the deer-browsed grass.
      Sickle moon and the fires pale stars.
      Spring peepers hush as I approach.
      begin singing again when I've passed by.


      - Charles Goodrichky



      From:david almquist <daidunno@...>
      To:<ascher@...>, <inouye@...>, <beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com>
      Date:04/22/2012 12:33 AM
      Subject:RE: [beemonitoring] ID?
      Sent by:beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com





       

      Introduced why?


      To: inouye@...; beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com
      From: ascher@...
      Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2012 20:05:06 +0000
      Subject: RE: [beemonitoring] ID?

       


      I think it's an Anthophora plumipes female, one of the exotic species introduced by Suzanne Batra et al. of the USDA.

      John


      [attachment "30d1871a.jpg" deleted by Sam Droege/BRD/USGS/DOI]

    • Show all 10 messages in this topic