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306Re: [beemonitoring] robbing

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  • nancy lee adamson
    May 30, 2008
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      Michael and other potential collaborators,

      I think it would be wonderful if we could try to standardize a methodology, but this is just my second summer, and I realize that the work I'm patterning my research on is based on many years of study and experience that I don't yet have.  I hope I've understood  the methodology well and apologize if  I'm misrepresenting it below.

      For monitoring visitation this year, I've been using a methodology patterned on Rachael Winfree's work, with 45 second visual counts of flowers open and visitors at open flowers each meter along a 40 meter transect.  I distinguish honey bees, bumblebees, carpenter bees (and now hope to see if I have something besides Xylocopa virginica here) and have grouped the rest into medium and small bees, plus, large, medium and small wasps, ants, Lepidoptera (noting species, if possible).  This is followed with netting at flower for 30 minutes for identification later to species.  For apples and blueberries, I tried to sample in the a.m. and the p.m. (Winfree used three sampling periods, I believe), though temperatures and weather didn't always permit this at my sites.  I also used bowl traps each day on site, recognizing that these trap a lot of non-pollinator species.  For squash, I expect to sample twice, but once very early and once later in the morning).

      I welcome suggestions, as I will be working on some vegetable crops and brambles later this summer, and could adjust the methodology. 


      On Fri, May 30, 2008 at 11:43 AM, Wilson, Michael E <mwilso14@...> wrote:


      "Did you inquire earlier about trap nests? Have you incorporated that into your project?"

      Yes we did, but no use as of yet. My lab partner found another southeastern study where
      only wasps used trap nests. I don't know how effective they may be in the southeast.

      Anyone have any luck with trap nests in the southeast?

      One site has Osmia nesting in fences, but not utilizing the trap nests. I've seen some
      Osmia on blueberries where I put a trap nest, but no use there either. We have 10 of them
      out and will increase that substantially next year, depending on $&time.

      Sounds like a very different scenario at your locations too. Nearly all the bumble bees I saw,
      which where few, were queens. I would be willing to cooperate standardization of data collection
      if you, and others in nearby regions, would be interested in working together on that.

      -Michael Wilson

      -----Original Message-----
      From: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com on behalf of nancy lee adamson
      Sent: Fri 5/30/2008 10:40 AM
      To: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [beemonitoring] robbing

      Hi, Michael,

      Thank you very much!! I sent separate thanks to Dr. Mangum, but will reply
      to your questions to the whole group.

      I am not sure that robbing only occurs after peak bloom, but last year
      noticed that carpenter robbers and honey bee robber followers were more
      abundant once the bumblebees generally seemed to have moved elsewhere (I
      don't know where). That was at one site last year. At another site this
      year, on my first visit, carpenter bees were not robbing, but in subsequent
      visits, they were (and like the other site, there were fewer pollinators
      generally by that time). These were highbush blueberries.

      I only have one site that has rabbiteye blueberry and it is not a large
      planting. When I visited that, there were primarily worker bumblebees
      pollinating. Honey bees were pollinating and robbing, but the number of
      robber holes seemed lower than in highbush blueberries, and I only saw/heard
      a couple carpenter bees. Earlier, on highbush blueberries, I found a large
      number of andrenid bees (never robbing), but by the time I monitored
      rabbiteye, it was quite a bit later (more than a week), I did not find many
      andrenids at all. I don't know if they are gone for the season or visiting
      other plants with higher amounts of nectar.

      I do think visiting several times is helpful (early in the bloom season to
      later), since a change was very noticeable at sites I visited. I did find
      that at one site, honey bees were much more abundant compared to 2 other
      sites, both located in wooded mountains.

      Did you inquire earlier about trap nests? Have you incorporated that into
      your project?


      On Fri, May 30, 2008 at 10:18 AM, Wilson, Michael E <mwilso14@...>

      > Hi Nancy, sounds like we are doing the same thing. Dr. Sampson also has
      > an article on this.
      > Sampson, B. J., Kanka, R. G., Stringer, S. J. (2004). Nectar robbery by
      > bees Xylocopa virginica and Apis mellifera contributes to the pollination of
      > Rabbiteye Blueberry. Journal of Economic Entomology 97(3): 735-740.
      > here's the article I have for Dr. Delaplane
      > Dedej, S. and Delaplane K. S. (2004). Nectar-robbing carpenter bees reduce
      > seed-setting capability of honey bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae) in Rabbiteye
      > blueberry, Vaccinium ashei, 'Climax'. Environmental Entomology 33(1):
      > 100-106.
      > I'm noting if each visitor is 'legitimate visit' or 'robbing' and will use
      > that in determining
      > the most significant pollinators. At two of my three sites honey bees
      > provided zero pollination that
      > I could tell. Carpenter bees over all seemed to be 'pretty good'
      > pollinators even though some robbed. The bloom
      > is over here, but I think I figured out what I need to do next year. I
      > certainly need more locations
      > as very different things where happening at each location.
      > I'm interested in what you said about robbing occurring after peak bloom.
      > Are you pretty confident
      > that it starts after peak bloom? My plans for the 2009 bloom was to visit 7
      > locations 2 times. I wonder
      > if I need to increase the per farm visits to get before, during, and after
      > peak bloom observations per farm?
      > One farm I visited never really had a peak bloom though, it was just
      > kind of a slow, steady, modest bloom, they trimmed heavily the previous
      > year due to the frost, and I think
      > that must have affected their bloom this year. They had robbing the entire
      > time.
      > -Thanks,
      > Michael Wilson (UTK grad student)
      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com <beemonitoring%40yahoogroups.com> on
      > behalf of Wyatt Mangum
      > Sent: Fri 5/30/2008 9:25 AM
      > To: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com <beemonitoring%40yahoogroups.com>
      > Subject: Re: [beemonitoring] robbing
      > Dear Nancy,
      > Dr. Delaplane has work with this. His contact address is
      > Dr. Keith S. Delaplane
      > Professor of Entomology
      > 463C Biological Sciences Building
      > University of Georgia
      > Athens, GA 30602 USA
      > voice (706) 542-1765
      > lab 706-769-1736
      > fax (706) 542-3872
      > ksd@... <ksd%40uga.edu>

      > Kind Regards,
      > Dr. Wyatt A. Mangum
      > Editor-in-Chief of Apiacta (digital version)
      > American Bee Journal Columnist on Honey Bee Biology
      > Mathematics Department
      > University of Mary Washington
      > 1301 College Avenue
      > Fredericksburg, VA 22401 USA
      > Email: wmangum@... <wmangum%40umw.edu>
      > >>> "nancy lee adamson" <nladamson@... <nladamson%40gmail.com>>

      > 05/30/08 9:14 AM >>>
      > I am monitoring bees on various crops, taking visitation counts. On
      > blueberries, after peak flowering, carpenter bees cut holes into the
      > flowers
      > and rob nectar. These holes are then used by honey bees, as well. I have
      > been including these in monitoring counts, but realized I should probably
      > remove them. Any thoughts from you all on this? Does anyone know if the
      > robbers still improve pollination on self- fertile flowers? Thanks for your
      > thoughts. Nancy
      > --
      > Nancy Adamson
      > Graduate Student in Entomology at Virginia Tech
      > tel: 540- 231- 6498

      Nancy Adamson
      Graduate Student in Entomology at Virginia Tech
      tel: 540-231-6498

      Nancy Adamson
      Graduate Student in Entomology at Virginia Tech
      tel: 540-231-6498
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