Navigation Links
Flight of the bumble (and honey) bee
Date:3/20/2009

CARBONDALE, ILInsects such as honeybees and bumble bees are predictable in the way they move among flowers, typically moving directly from one flower to an adjacent cluster of flowers in the same row of plants. The bees' flight paths have a direct affect on their ability to hunt for pollen and generate "gene flow", fertilization and seed production that results when pollen moves from one plant to another. The study of gene flow has experienced more attention in part due to the recent introduction of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the environment.

Scientists, plant breeders, and growers seek to understand flight patterns of honeybees, bumble bees, and other insect "pollinators" as a way to increase production and healthy produce. Although several studies have focused on pollen movement among cucurbits, the plant family that includes cucumbers, gourds, melons, or pumpkins, little research has looked at pollinator flight patterns and, until recently, none has determined pollen flow in watermelon plantings.

New research published in the February 2009 issue of HortScience by research scientists S. Alan Walters of Southern Illinois University and Jonathan R. Schultheis of North Carolina State University studied pollinator movements down and across rows in watermelon [Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.)] by tracking pollen flow. The direction of honeybees was tracked under field conditions during 2001 and 2002 at the Southern Illinois University Horticultural Research Center in Carbondale.

According to Walters, the study indicated that the evaluation of pollen flow showed a definite pattern of bee movement and gene migration in watermelon. "Although we detected pollinator movement that was strongly directional in both directions (east and west) down the row from the central block of donor plants, results also indicate that significant movement also occurred across rows in both directions (north and south) from the donor plot", he remarked.

Because watermelon vines grow in multiple directions, including across rows, bees can easily move across rows if the next closest flower is in that direction instead of down the row. Most pollen is deposited on the nearest neighboring flower from where pollen was collected.

Walters summarized the study stating, "Although significant amounts of linear pollinator movements occur down rows of watermelon plants, pollinator movements (in watermelon) are not as simple as just maintaining a linear direction straight down the row, but are related to the short flight distances that most likely occur to the closest neighboring flower from the one that was previously visited."


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael W. Neff
mwneff@ashs.org
703-836-4606
American Society for Horticultural Science
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. The medium is the message: Manipulating salmonella in spaceflight curtails infectiousness
2. Promptu and OAG Team to Deliver Flight Schedule and Status Information on Mobile Devices
3. New research challenges long-held assumptions of flightless bird evolution
4. Clovis-age overkill didnt take out Californias flightless sea duck
5. Spaceflight shown to alter ability of bacteria to cause disease
6. Bumblebees learn the sweet smell of foraging success
7. Wasps and bumble bees heat up, fly faster with protein-rich food
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/13/2017)... -- Future of security: Biometric Face Matching software  ... ... Face Matching enables to match face pictures against each other or against large ... Identification Systems) ... is the fastest software for biometric Face Matching on the market. The speed ...
(Date:3/6/2017)... , March 6, 2017 ... sales technology, today announced Predictive Sales Coach TM ... infusing actionable sales intelligence into Salesforce. This unique ... enable their sales organizations with deep knowledge of ... allow for intelligent engagement. Predictive Sales Coach extends ...
(Date:3/1/2017)... , March 1, 2017  Aware, Inc. (NASDAQ: AWRE), ... that Richard P. Moberg has resigned, effective ... and Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of Aware citing ... serve as a member of the Board of Directors ... Aware,s co-Chief Executive Officer and co-President, General Counsel has ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/28/2017)... ... March 28, 2017 , ... ... partnership with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the ... this partnership, ReadCube will enhance its high-impact scholarly collection across its cross-platform ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... ... ... Franz Inc ., the leading supplier of Semantic Graph Database technology, ... by Bloor Research in its recent Graph Database Market Update report. ... Gruff, it was rated as the easiest product to use.” – Bloor Research , ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... MA. (PRWEB) , ... March 28, 2017 , ... ... long time members of the Modular Building Institute (MBI), an international modular trade ... in the permanent modular category for the Pagliuca Life Lab at Harvard University. ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... NAMUR , Belgium , March 28, ... of VolitionRx Limited (NYSE MKT: VNRX), today announced the engagement ... of DVD Associates, LLC, as a strategic consultant. Dr. ... in identifying and securing non-dilutive funding in the ... the United States . Dr. Vollmer Dahlke ...
Breaking Biology Technology: