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Re: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

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  • Jack Neff
    Laura: Pollinator efficacy is best measured with actual experiments which link visitation and fruit and/or seed set. These can be rather tedious so many
    Message 1 of 16 , Oct 29, 2010
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      Laura:  Pollinator efficacy is best measured with actual experiments which link visitation and fruit and/or seed set.  These can be rather tedious so many workers resort to guesstimates involving some combination of traits which are thought to predict pollinating ability (size, abundance, frequency of visitation, contact with anthers and stigma and so forth).  I believe most the pollinator "information" on the Rutgers/Bryn Mawr pamphlet is of the latter type as some of it is highly dubious (Dialictus as excellent pollinators of tomatoes or peppers,  Peponapis as significant pollinators of muskmelon or watermelon, and the classification of Andrena as only good, not excellent pollinators of apples).  Bees tend to be the dominant pollinators in most communities since they are relatively common, their entire life cycles )with few exceptions) are based on floral resources, and they tend to make frequent contact with plant reproductive parts.  That doesn't mean all bees are great pollinators or that all plants are bee pollinated.  There is vast literature on pollination biology out there if you are interested in such stuff.

      best

      Jack 
       
      John L. Neff
      Central Texas Melittological Institute
      7307 Running Rope
      Austin,TX 78731 USA
      512-345-7219



      From: Laura Russo <lar322@...>
      To: Bee United <beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Fri, October 29, 2010 11:16:13 AM
      Subject: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

       

      Hello all,
      I hope that this is the right forum for this question.  I am curious to see whether anyone on this list-serve has strong opinions about the effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators?

      I may be confused about this topic, but as far as I can tell... floral visitation is commonly used as a surrogate for pollination services in the literature, but it seems clear that not all floral visitors are equally efficient pollinators.  Apids seem to be touted as the most effective because a) they collect pollen for their brood and b) they have branched body hairs that stick to pollen.  Other Hymenopterans are called bees, (the Anthophila families: i.e. Colletidae, Andrenidae, Megachilidae, Halictidae, Melittidae...).  However, some members of the genus Hylaeus carry pollen internally and seem like they would be less effective as pollinators.  Similarly, non-Hymenopteran visitors, such as Syrphids, are sometimes labeled pollinators. 

      Do you know of any work that has been done to compare the efficacy of these different visitors for pollination?

      I apologize if this is not an appropriate question, but I felt that I could learn a lot by posing it to all of the experts on the list-serve.

      Thank you for your time,

      Laura Russo

      --
      PhD Candidate
      Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology
      Biology Department
      Pennsylvania State University
      University Park, PA 16802

      office: 415 Mueller Lab
      phone: 814-865-7912


    • pollinator2001
      ... Even this may not quantify much; it may only give rough estimates. Having watched bees for many seasons, it never fails to impress me that a particular
      Message 2 of 16 , Oct 29, 2010
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        --- In beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com, Jack Neff <jlnatctmi@...> wrote:
        >
        > Laura: Pollinator efficacy is best measured with actual experiments which link
        > visitation and fruit and/or seed set.

        Even this may not quantify much; it may only give rough estimates. Having watched bees for many seasons, it never fails to impress me that a particular plant species, in a particular spot, can have one species be the primary pollinator one year, while the next year it's obvious that another pollinator is doing the bulk of the job.

        Another variable was strongly impressed on me just this afternoon as I tried to take some photos of B. impatiens on marigold blossoms. As I did, it left them and moved over to a patch of zinnia blossoms. As I cautiously moved to the new site and began to snap, it left again, moving to a patch of mistflower.

        I can't quantify which bee species move around from one plant species to another, but I've seen it often enough to realize that their efficiency has to be reduced by such activity.

        All told, it seems that you can only come up with case by case information, and that may not be exactly valid the next time.

        Dave in SC
        (Where we still have a few flowers and bees left)
      • Jack Neff
        Pollinator2001 et al: Variation is part of all natural systems but hard data is usually preferable to mere guessing. Jack John L. Neff Central Texas
        Message 3 of 16 , Oct 29, 2010
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          Pollinator2001 et al:  Variation is part of all natural systems but hard data is usually preferable to mere guessing.

          Jack
           
          John L. Neff
          Central Texas Melittological Institute
          7307 Running Rope
          Austin,TX 78731 USA
          512-345-7219



          From: pollinator2001 <Pollinator@...>
          To: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Fri, October 29, 2010 8:40:46 PM
          Subject: [beemonitoring] Re: Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

           



          --- In beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com, Jack Neff <jlnatctmi@...> wrote:
          >
          > Laura: Pollinator efficacy is best measured with actual experiments which link
          > visitation and fruit and/or seed set.

          Even this may not quantify much; it may only give rough estimates. Having watched bees for many seasons, it never fails to impress me that a particular plant species, in a particular spot, can have one species be the primary pollinator one year, while the next year it's obvious that another pollinator is doing the bulk of the job.

          Another variable was strongly impressed on me just this afternoon as I tried to take some photos of B. impatiens on marigold blossoms. As I did, it left them and moved over to a patch of zinnia blossoms. As I cautiously moved to the new site and began to snap, it left again, moving to a patch of mistflower.

          I can't quantify which bee species move around from one plant species to another, but I've seen it often enough to realize that their efficiency has to be reduced by such activity.

          All told, it seems that you can only come up with case by case information, and that may not be exactly valid the next time.

          Dave in SC
          (Where we still have a few flowers and bees left)


        • Nick Stewart
          Hey Laura,    This is from my Palm, so it s brief, but i m currently in the middle (ended 2010 Season early-Oct, continuing ID s) of a large study
          Message 4 of 16 , Oct 29, 2010
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            Hey Laura,

               This is from my Palm, so it's brief, but i'm currently in the middle (ended 2010 Season early-Oct, continuing ID's) of a large study looking directly into that very thing - though, it's in set in N. GA & specifically I'm looking @ (surveying species richness & evenness) ALL native pollinators w/in my 12 sites, which (w/  apids) includes every family in Apoidea, Leps, & the pollinating taxa of Diptera (syrphids, bombylids, most muscoid calyptrates, etc). 
                One facet of the project (1 of 7 distinct focuses studied w/in my study plots on each site), is a netting  program during the bloom, where a proportion of the trees are covered by netting w/ a gauge that excludes pollinators 80% the size of A. mellifera, allowing us to check only the open blooms during sampling days (for # of effective pollen tubes), deter. those native's (< apis) efficacy of pollinators.

            (Took me like 30min to write that, darn phones!!) 

            If you're (or anyone's) intrigued, feel free to contact me for more!
             
            Also, I used to work @ the Frost Museum (Dr. KC Kim was my mentor) for ~4yrs, right across the street from Ento Dept in the Ag Bldg! Worked mostly on biodiversity assesments (doing species, for Gettysburg Asses. (GETT), & family/generic, for Fort Indiantown Gap (FTIG), determinations), the Sea Otter Ectoparasite Study, curatorial duties, etc. - that's where I honed my ID  ability. Great-great school!!

            Nick Stewart
            Georgia Gwinnett College
            nick.s2art@...





            Sent from my Palm Pixi on AT&T


            On Oct 29, 2010 12:16 PM, Laura Russo <lar322@...> wrote:

             

            Hello all,
            I hope that this is the right forum for this question.  I am curious to see whether anyone on this list-serve has strong opinions about the effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators?

            I may be confused about this topic, but as far as I can tell... floral visitation is commonly used as a surrogate for pollination services in the literature, but it seems clear that not all floral visitors are equally efficient pollinators.  Apids seem to be touted as the most effective because a) they collect pollen for their brood and b) they have branched body hairs that stick to pollen.  Other Hymenopterans are called bees, (the Anthophila families: i.e. Colletidae, Andrenidae, Megachilidae, Halictidae, Melittidae...).  However, some members of the genus Hylaeus carry pollen internally and seem like they would be less effective as pollinators.  Similarly, non-Hymenopteran visitors, such as Syrphids, are sometimes labeled pollinators. 

            Do you know of any work that has been done to compare the efficacy of these different visitors for pollination?

            I apologize if this is not an appropriate question, but I felt that I could learn a lot by posing it to all of the experts on the list-serve.

            Thank you for your time,

            Laura Russo

            --
            PhD Candidate
            Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology
            Biology Department
            Pennsylvania State University
            University Park, PA 16802

            office: 415 Mueller Lab
            phone: 814-865-7912

          • Eugene J. Scarpulla
            Laura, This information may be a bit dated and you may already have it, but I have just finished reading Forgotten Pollinators by Stephen L. Buchmann and Gary
            Message 5 of 16 , Oct 29, 2010
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              Laura,
               
              This information may be a bit dated and you may already have it, but I have just finished reading Forgotten Pollinators by Stephen L. Buchmann and Gary Paul Nabhan (Island Press, Washington, D.C., 1996, 292 pp.).  While Appendix 5 (Pollinator Classes for the World's Wild Flowering Plants) does not specifically address pollinator efficiency, it does show an interesting table of "Categories of Pollen Vectors" and "% of Total Flowering Plants (Angiosperms) Pollinated by Taxon."  I have listed them in descending order.
               
              Beetles: 88.3%
              Hymenoptera: 18.0%
              Bees: 16.6%
              Wind: 8.3%
              Butterflies/Moths: 8.0%
              Flies: 5.9%
              Water: 0.63%
              All Vertebrates: 0.51%
              Birds: 0.4%
              Thrips: 0.21%
              All Mammals: 0.1%
              Bats: 0.07%
               
              Gene Scarpulla
              Millers Island, Maryland
              Editor, The Maryland Entomologist & The Phaeton
              ejscarp@...
               
               
              ----- Original Message -----
              Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 12:16 PM
              Subject: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

               

              Hello all,
              I hope that this is the right forum for this question.  I am curious to see whether anyone on this list-serve has strong opinions about the effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators?

              I may be confused about this topic, but as far as I can tell... floral visitation is commonly used as a surrogate for pollination services in the literature, but it seems clear that not all floral visitors are equally efficient pollinators.  Apids seem to be touted as the most effective because a) they collect pollen for their brood and b) they have branched body hairs that stick to pollen.  Other Hymenopterans are called bees, (the Anthophila families: i.e. Colletidae, Andrenidae, Megachilidae, Halictidae, Melittidae...).  However, some members of the genus Hylaeus carry pollen internally and seem like they would be less effective as pollinators.  Similarly, non-Hymenopteran visitors, such as Syrphids, are sometimes labeled pollinators. 

              Do you know of any work that has been done to compare the efficacy of these different visitors for pollination?

              I apologize if this is not an appropriate question, but I felt that I could learn a lot by posing it to all of the experts on the list-serve.

              Thank you for your time,

              Laura Russo

              --
              PhD Candidate
              Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology
              Biology Department
              Pennsylvania State University
              University Park, PA 16802

              office: 415 Mueller Lab
              phone: 814-865-7912

            • Jack Neff
              That 88% of the worlds flora is visited by beetles is quite plausible. That beetles are the primary pollinators of 88% of the worlds flora is preposterous.
              Message 6 of 16 , Oct 30, 2010
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                That 88%  of the worlds flora is visited by beetles is quite plausible.  That beetles are the primary pollinators of 88% of the worlds flora is preposterous.  Academic rigor is not one of the strong points of Nabhams and Buchmann plea for pollinator conservation.

                best

                Jack
                 
                John L. Neff
                Central Texas Melittological Institute
                7307 Running Rope
                Austin,TX 78731 USA
                512-345-7219



                From: Eugene J. Scarpulla <ejscarp@...>
                To: Bee United <beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Fri, October 29, 2010 11:28:16 PM
                Subject: Re: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

                 

                Laura,
                 
                This information may be a bit dated and you may already have it, but I have just finished reading Forgotten Pollinators by Stephen L. Buchmann and Gary Paul Nabhan (Island Press, Washington, D.C., 1996, 292 pp.).  While Appendix 5 (Pollinator Classes for the World's Wild Flowering Plants) does not specifically address pollinator efficiency, it does show an interesting table of "Categories of Pollen Vectors" and "% of Total Flowering Plants (Angiosperms) Pollinated by Taxon."  I have listed them in descending order.
                 
                Beetles: 88.3%
                Hymenoptera: 18.0%
                Bees: 16.6%
                Wind: 8.3%
                Butterflies/Moths: 8.0%
                Flies: 5.9%
                Water: 0.63%
                All Vertebrates: 0.51%
                Birds: 0.4%
                Thrips: 0.21%
                All Mammals: 0.1%
                Bats: 0.07%
                 
                Gene Scarpulla
                Millers Island, Maryland
                Editor, The Maryland Entomologist & The Phaeton
                ejscarp@...
                 
                 
                ----- Original Message -----
                Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 12:16 PM
                Subject: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

                 

                Hello all,
                I hope that this is the right forum for this question.  I am curious to see whether anyone on this list-serve has strong opinions about the effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators?

                I may be confused about this topic, but as far as I can tell... floral visitation is commonly used as a surrogate for pollination services in the literature, but it seems clear that not all floral visitors are equally efficient pollinators.  Apids seem to be touted as the most effective because a) they collect pollen for their brood and b) they have branched body hairs that stick to pollen.  Other Hymenopterans are called bees, (the Anthophila families: i.e. Colletidae, Andrenidae, Megachilidae, Halictidae, Melittidae...).  However, some members of the genus Hylaeus carry pollen internally and seem like they would be less effective as pollinators.  Similarly, non-Hymenopteran visitors, such as Syrphids, are sometimes labeled pollinators. 

                Do you know of any work that has been done to compare the efficacy of these different visitors for pollination?

                I apologize if this is not an appropriate question, but I felt that I could learn a lot by posing it to all of the experts on the list-serve.

                Thank you for your time,

                Laura Russo

                --
                PhD Candidate
                Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology
                Biology Department
                Pennsylvania State University
                University Park, PA 16802

                office: 415 Mueller Lab
                phone: 814-865-7912


              • Linda Newstrom
                Hi Laura A group in New Zealand has been considering this topic with our native albeit primitive bees. The contacts are Barry Donovan
                Message 7 of 16 , Oct 31, 2010

                Hi Laura

                A group in New Zealand has been considering this topic with our native albeit primitive bees.

                The contacts are Barry Donovan  (Barry.Donovan@...)

                and Brad Howlett (Brad.Howlett@...).

                 

                I have attached a couple papers. 

                One on comparing how much pollen is transferred by native bees and honey bees and bumble bees.

                 

                One on the use of the terms effectiveness and efficiency and importance and ways to measure them.

                Sorry this last one has been published but I don’t have the pdf copy available to me right now as I do not have access to the source for the final published copy at the moment (In Biological Reviews 2009).

                 

                Regards

                Linda Newstrom-Lloyd

                 

                From: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com [mailto:beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Laura Russo
                Sent: Saturday, 30 October 2010 5:16 a.m.
                To: Bee United
                Subject: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

                 

                 

                Hello all,
                I hope that this is the right forum for this question.  I am curious to see whether anyone on this list-serve has strong opinions about the effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators?

                I may be confused about this topic, but as far as I can tell... floral visitation is commonly used as a surrogate for pollination services in the literature, but it seems clear that not all floral visitors are equally efficient pollinators.  Apids seem to be touted as the most effective because a) they collect pollen for their brood and b) they have branched body hairs that stick to pollen.  Other Hymenopterans are called bees, (the Anthophila families: i.e. Colletidae, Andrenidae, Megachilidae, Halictidae, Melittidae...).  However, some members of the genus Hylaeus carry pollen internally and seem like they would be less effective as pollinators.  Similarly, non-Hymenopteran visitors, such as Syrphids, are sometimes labeled pollinators. 

                Do you know of any work that has been done to compare the efficacy of these different visitors for pollination?

                I apologize if this is not an appropriate question, but I felt that I could learn a lot by posing it to all of the experts on the list-serve.

                Thank you for your time,

                Laura Russo

                --
                PhD Candidate
                Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology
                Biology Department
                Pennsylvania State University
                University Park, PA 16802

                office: 415 Mueller Lab
                phone: 814-865-7912

                 

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              • Greenstone, Matt
                See also Lundgren JG (2009) Relationships of natural enemies and non-prey foods. Springer. There are some little-known and forgotten instances of pollinivory
                Message 8 of 16 , Nov 1, 2010
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                  See also Lundgren JG (2009) Relationships of natural enemies and non-prey foods. Springer.

                   

                  There are some little-known and forgotten instances of pollinivory and nectarivory cited, some in detail, and many of which undoubtedly result in pollination.

                   

                  Matt G

                   


                  From: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com [mailto:beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Jack Neff
                  Sent: Saturday, October 30, 2010 11:05 AM
                  To: Eugene J. Scarpulla; Bee United
                  Subject: Re: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

                   

                   

                  That 88%  of the worlds flora is visited by beetles is quite plausible.  That beetles are the primary pollinators of 88% of the worlds flora is preposterous.  Academic rigor is not one of the strong points of Nabhams and Buchmann plea for pollinator conservation.

                   

                  best

                   

                  Jack
                   

                  John L. Neff
                  Central Texas Melittological Institute
                  7307 Running Rope
                  Austin , TX 78731 USA
                  512-345-7219

                   

                   


                  From: Eugene J. Scarpulla <ejscarp@...>
                  To: B! ee United <beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com>
                  Sent: Fri, October 29, 2010 11:28:16 PM
                  Subject: Re: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

                   

                  Laura,

                   

                  This information may be a bit dated and you may already have it, but I have just finished reading Forgotten Pollinators by Stephen L. Buchmann and Gary Paul Nabhan (Island Press, Washington, D.C., 1996, 292 pp.).  While Appendix 5 (Pollinator Classes for the World's Wild Flowering Plants) does not specifically address pollinator efficiency, it does show an interesting table of "Categories of Pollen Vectors" and "% of Total Flowering Plants (Angiosperms) Pollinated by Taxon."  I have listed them in descending order.

                   

                  Beetles: 88.3%

                  Hymenoptera: 18.0%

                  Bees: 16.6%

                  Wind: 8.3%

                  Butterflies/Moths: 8.0%

                  Flies: 5.9%

                  Water: 0.63%

                  All Vertebrates: 0.51%

                  Birds: 0.4%

                  Thrips: 0.21%

                  All Mammals: 0.1%

                  Bats: 0.07%

                   

                  Gene Scarpulla
                  Millers Island , Maryland
                  Editor, The Maryland Entomologist & The Phaeton
                  ejscarp@...

                   

                   

                  ----- Original Message -----

                  Sent: Friday, October 29, 2010 12:16 PM

                  Subject: [beemonitoring] Effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators

                   

                   

                  Hello all,
                  I hope that this is the right forum for this question.  I am curious to see whether anyone on this list-serve has strong opinions about the effectiveness of non-Apid pollinators?

                  I may be confused about this topic, but as far as I can tell... floral visitation is commonly used as a surrogate for pollination services in the literature, but it seems clear that not all floral visitors are equally efficient pollinators.  Apids seem to be touted as the most effective because a) they collect pollen for their brood and b) they have branched body hairs that stick to pollen.  Other Hymenopterans are called bees, (the Anthophila families: i.e. Colletidae, Andrenidae, Megachilidae, Halictidae, Melittidae...).  However, some members of the genus Hylaeus carry pollen internally and seem like they would be less effective as pollinators.  Similarly, non-Hymenopteran visitors, such as Syrphids, are sometimes labeled pollinators. 

                  Do you know of any work that has been done to compare the efficacy of these different visitors for pollination?

                  I apologize if this is not an appropriate question, but I felt that I could learn a lot by posing it to all of the experts on the list-serve.

                  Thank you for your time,

                  Laura Russo

                  --
                  PhD Candidate
                  Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology
                  Biology Department
                  Pennsylvania State University
                  University Park , PA 16802

                  office: 415 Mueller Lab
                  phone: 814-865-7912

                   

                • Susan Waters
                  Hello, I ve just read about a bioinformatics system for identifying bees called ABIS. Does anyone know where I can find this software, how to get ahold of it,
                  Message 9 of 16 , Nov 4, 2010
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                    Hello,

                    I've just read about a bioinformatics system for identifying bees
                    called ABIS. Does anyone know where I can find this software, how to
                    get ahold of it, and what it might cost?

                    Thank you,

                    Susan Waters
                  • Wilson, Michael E
                    Hi Susan, That reminded me of some honey bee morphometric work I have heard presentations about. I found this reference in an article. Steinhage V., Arbuckle
                    Message 10 of 16 , Nov 5, 2010
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Hi Susan,
                      That reminded me of some honey bee morphometric work I have heard presentations about. I found this reference in an article.

                      Steinhage V., Arbuckle T., Schröder S., Cremers
                      A.B., Wittmann D. (2001) ABIS: Automated
                      Identification of Bee Species, German
                      Programme on Biodiversity and Global Change,
                      Status Report 2001, Bonn, pp. 194–195, [online]
                      http://www.informatik.uni-bonn.de/projects/ABIS/
                      ABIS_publications.html (accessed on 24 October
                      2005).

                      With the link being broken, it appears it used to link from the bottom of this page

                      http://wob.iai.uni-bonn.de/Wob/de/view/class217_id1312.html#class217_id1335

                      Hope that helps.
                      Michael Wilson
                      University of Tennessee

                      From: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com [beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com] on behalf of Susan Waters [smwaters@...]
                      Sent: Thursday, November 04, 2010 7:04 PM
                      To: beemonitoring@yahoogroups.com
                      Subject: [beemonitoring] ABIS system for "fingerprinting" bees

                       

                      Hello,

                      I've just read about a bioinformatics system for identifying bees
                      called ABIS. Does anyone know where I can find this software, how to
                      get ahold of it, and what it might cost?

                      Thank you,

                      Susan Waters

                    • Cane, Jim
                      Susan- ABIS is (was) a sophisticated morphometric digitization and analysis system for identifying bees to species, sometimes even subspecies. It used
                      Message 11 of 16 , Nov 5, 2010
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                        Susan- ABIS is (was) a sophisticated morphometric digitization and analysis system for identifying bees to species, sometimes even subspecies.  It used angles/lengths/ratios of wing veins and cells fit (collected authomatically in later versions) and automatically chose to fit them to one of 7 (I think) templates, once the system was “trained” on a set of knowns for the genus of interest.  When I last checked, a user-friendly front-end was not available for the software, which was University developed in Germany.  It’s performance would impress if not awe anyone, even a seasoned bee taxonomist.  Last I knew, the software team is now scattered.

                         

                        Yours,

                         

                        jim

                         

                        ===============================

                        James H. Cane

                        USDA-ARS Bee Biology and Systematics Lab

                        Utah State University, Logan, UT 84322 USA

                        tel: 435-797-3879   FAX: 435-797-0461

                        email: Jim.Cane@... 

                        http://www.ars.usda.gov/npa/logan/beelab

                        http://www.biology.usu.edu/people/facultyinfo.asp?username=jcane

                        Gardening for Native Bees: http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/factsheet/plants-pollinators09.pdf

                         

                        "The obscure takes time to see,

                        but the obvious takes longer"
                        Edward R. Murrow

                         

                      • Susan Waters
                        Thanks to all for your responses! Susan
                        Message 12 of 16 , Nov 5, 2010
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                          Thanks to all for your responses!

                          Susan
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