Jump to content
Dave Black

Thinking about Pollen (again)

Recommended Posts

@Dave Black if a domestic  garden does not satisfy the bees requirements it must be because ornamental flowers have been  hybridised and line bred for characteristics, colour, smell etc, that the bees do not find useful.

A domestic garden with the wild species of flower should supply the bees needs.

If the bees get other elements from dirty water hives on animal farms should be healthier.

My strongest hive is next to my chook house .

But my bees prefer to get their water  from my large goldfish pond, which has snails and frogs and is often murky .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A New Zealand group has used this approach to look at pollen diversity @Dave Black . . . it was done at Lincoln University.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27896027

While its a few hundred dollars per sample when maximised, it requires a lot of samples to make the most of the sequencing instrument run . . . and also involves a fair bit of bioinformatics (ie grunty computers and software that can separate out all the different sequences and match them to databases).

 

We have used this metabarcoding approach to look at the diversity of bacteria . . . through a wastewater system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That’s a compact little study @JohnF. I don’t have any argument with their discussion about the value of AES assessments [Agri-Environment Schemes], but I’m not sure their result with Phacelia is robust enough to hinge it all on! That aside, it’s an example of exactly the kind of work I think we need more of, and the sort of practical thing I think metabarcoding is good for.

This bit caught my eye: By 2009, about 66% of England’s agricultural land was managed as part of AES agreements. Wow. They’re currently around 20% of farmers’ payment through CAP I think, so that must be why, but I’m guessing Brexit is about to kill that off!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It is so great to see that our study may be put into practice and that we managed to write the paper in accessible and comprehensible way (and this is is really difficult, especially for non native English speaker). Thank you!.

Please take a look at the Table 7 ( http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0183236#pone-0183236-t007 ) in our paper ( http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0183236#pone-0183236-t007 ), where we presented 85 plants, that were investigated during last 75 years of bee research and we calculated which plants may limit bee growth and development (negatively influencing health and condition, resulting in underdevelopment or even in death) and which plants produce pollen nutritionally balanced for bees, therefore promoting their development and health. In case of Europe, clover, producing pollen nutritionally balanced for bees, is a good choice as bee-friendly plant. You may find something else for yourself. We found that lavender produce highly nutritionally imbalanced pollen, therefore even if considered as bee-friendly, because of nectar production (source of energy but not physiologically important nutrients) and even if lavender attracts pollinators to a high degree, its good to provide the insects with another source of pollen that is nutritionally balanced and enables gathering of important nutrients in needed proportions. In general we suggest that plants should not be evaluated as adequate sources of bee food based solely on the quantity of pollen produced. The nutritional quality of pollen should also be taken into consideration.

Kind regards!
Michał Filipiak

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
  • Good Info 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi @Michal,

I'm grateful for your kind response. Perhaps it supports your decision to publish in an Open Access journal - long may that continue.

 

NZ has many imported European plants that form a significant part of the bee forage, so that table is indeed quite useful. Ironically what we have little data is in the case of our own native flora. The country was never 'designed' for honey bees, if I can put it like that.

 

Nice to have you as a member for a while! It will take me some time to fully absorb your paper. :)

Edited by Dave Black
Spelling
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...