Publications by authors named "John Ascher"

49 Publications

Joint Impacts of Drought and Habitat Fragmentation on Native Bee Assemblages in a California Biodiversity Hotspot.

Insects 2021 Feb 5;12(2). Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Section of Ecology, Behavior and Evolution, Division of Biological Sciences, University of California-San Diego, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.

Global climate change is causing more frequent and severe droughts, which could have serious repercussions for the maintenance of biodiversity. Here, we compare native bee assemblages collected via bowl traps before and after a severe drought event in 2014 in San Diego, California, and examine the relative magnitude of impacts from drought in fragmented habitat patches versus unfragmented natural reserves. Bee richness and diversity were higher in assemblages surveyed before the drought compared to those surveyed after the drought. However, bees belonging to the subgenus increased in abundance after the drought, driving increased representation by small-bodied, primitively eusocial, and generalist bees in post-drought assemblages. Conversely, among non- bees, post-drought years were associated with decreased abundance and reduced representation by eusocial species. Drought effects were consistently greater in reserves, which supported more bee species, than in fragments, suggesting that fragmentation either had redundant impacts with drought, or ameliorated effects of drought by enhancing bees' access to floral resources in irrigated urban environments. Shifts in assemblage composition associated with drought were three times greater compared to those associated with habitat fragmentation, highlighting the importance of understanding the impacts of large-scale climatic events relative to those associated with land use change.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/insects12020135DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7914906PMC
February 2021

Resin bees of genus , subgenera and (Hymenoptera, Megachilidae) from Thailand with description of a new species.

Zookeys 2020 25;997:95-144. Epub 2020 Nov 25.

Center of Excellence in Entomology and Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok 10330, Thailand Chulalongkorn University Bangkok Thailand.

Resin bees of the genus Megachile subgenus Callomegachile sensu lato (Hymenoptera; Megachilidae) from Thailand are reviewed. The 14 species treated include those described or revised in the subgenus Alocanthedon, a junior synonym of (three species), and in (one species). One new species is described, Chatthanabun and Warrit, The replacement name Chatthanabun, Warrit and Ascher, , is proposed for Wu (not Schrottky), which is recorded for the first time outside China. For each species, maps and full label data for the examined material documenting occurrences in Thailand are provided. In addition, global ranges, floral associations, and other life history data are summarized and a key to the Thai species is provided for females.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.997.34935DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7710695PMC
November 2020

Bees of the genus Anthidium Fabricius, 1804 (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Megachilidae: Anthidiini) from China.

Zootaxa 2020 Oct 22;4867(1):zootaxa.4867.1.1. Epub 2020 Oct 22.

Key Laboratory of Zoological Systematics and Evolution, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1 Beichen West Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, P. R. China..

The Chinese bees of the genus Anthidium Fabricius, 1804, are reviewed. Twenty-one species are confirmed to occur in China, five of which are described and illustrated as new Chinese endemics: Anthidium (Anthidium) pseudomontanum Niu Zhu, sp. nov., A. (A.) pseudophilorum Niu Zhu, sp. nov., A. (A.) tasitiense Niu Zhu, sp. nov., A. (A.) xuezhongi Niu Zhu, sp. nov., and A. (Proanthidium) qingtaoi Niu Zhu, sp. nov.. The previously unknown female of A. (A.) kashmirense Mavromoustakis, 1937 and male of A. (P.) kashgarense (Cockerell, 1911) are described for the first time. Anthidium (A.) furcatum Wu, 2004 (junior primary homonym, nec Anthidium furcatum Ducke, 1908) is replaced with its valid and available synonym A. (A.) striatum Wu, 2004. New synonymies are also established for A. (A.) kashmirense Mavromoustakis, 1937 = A. (A.) nigroventrale Wu, 1982, syn. nov., and A. (A.) florentinum (Fabricius, 1775) = A. (A.) helianthinum Wu, 2004, syn. nov. The non-Chinese Anthidium amabile Alfken, 1933 (junior primary homonym, nec Anthidium porterae var. amabile Cockerell, 1904) is unavailable and the available name Anthidium (Proanthidium) minimum Pasteels, 1969, is valid for this species. Updated synonymies and distributional data are provided for some widespread Palaearctic species including two now adventive in the New World. For Chinese species, the distribution and floral associations of each are provided along with illustrations and a key to the known species.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4867.1.1DOI Listing
October 2020

The wild bees (Hymenoptera: Apoidea) of Morocco.

Zootaxa 2020 Dec 7;4892(1):zootaxa.4892.1.1. Epub 2020 Dec 7.

International Center of Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas, Rabat, Morocco. Laboratory of Zoology, Research Institute for Biosciences, University of Mons, place du parc 20, 7000 Mons, Belgium..

Morocco is a well known hot-spot of biodiversity in the Mediterranean basin. While some taxa like vascular plants are relatively well recorded, important groups of pollinators like bees are still understudied. This article presents an updated checklist of the bee species of Morocco and includes a summary of global and regional distribution of each species. A total of 961 species belonging to six bee families and 68 genera are recorded: Andrenidae (8 genera, 217 species); Apidae (15 genera, 241 species); Colletidae (2 genera, 74 species), Halictidae (12 genera, 144 species), Megachilidae (28 genera, 271 species) and Melittidae (3 genera, 14 species). Among them, 67 species are recorded for the first time in Morocco. Around 70% of the bee fauna of Morocco consists of widespread Palaearctic species. Only 18% of Moroccan species recorded are restricted to North Africa and 8% are Moroccan single-country endemics (81 species). Afrotropical elements in the Moroccan fauna are few, with only 3% of Morocco species co-occuring in that region. This checklist is intended to stimulate new regional research on bees including their taxonomy and biogeography. As many groups of bees have been understudied, discovery of new species for science and new records for the country can be expected. Additional research including inventorying, monitoring, and integrative taxonomic studies are needed to develop a comprehensive strategy for bee conservation in Morocco.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4892.1.1DOI Listing
December 2020

Global Patterns and Drivers of Bee Distribution.

Curr Biol 2021 Feb 19;31(3):451-458.e4. Epub 2020 Nov 19.

Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore, 16 Science Drive 4, Singapore 117558, Singapore. Electronic address:

Insects are the focus of many recent studies suggesting population declines, but even invaluable pollination service providers such as bees lack a modern distributional synthesis. Here, we combine a uniquely comprehensive checklist of bee species distributions and >5,800,000 public bee occurrence records to describe global patterns of bee biodiversity. Publicly accessible records are sparse, especially from developing countries, and are frequently inaccurate throughout much of the world, consequently suggesting different biodiversity patterns from checklist data. Global analyses reveal hotspots of species richness, together generating a rare bimodal latitudinal richness gradient, and further analyses suggest that xeric areas, solar radiation, and non-forest plant productivity are among the most important global drivers of bee biodiversity. Together, our results provide a new baseline and best practices for studies on bees and other understudied invertebrates.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2020.10.053DOI Listing
February 2021

Taxonomy must engage with new technologies and evolve to face future challenges.

Nat Ecol Evol 2021 01;5(1):3-4

Key Laboratory of Zoological Systematics and Evolution, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41559-020-01360-5DOI Listing
January 2021

Chinese species of Nomia (Gnathonomia) Pauly, 2005 (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Halictidae: Nomiinae).

Zootaxa 2020 Apr 30;4768(1):zootaxa.4768.1.5. Epub 2020 Apr 30.

Key Laboratory of Zoological Systematics and Evolution, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1 Beichen West Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, P. R. China. College of Biological Sciences, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, No.19A Yuquan Road, Shijingshan District, Beijing, 10049, P.R. China..

Five Chinese species of Nomia (Gnathonomia) Pauly, 2005 are treated in this paper: Nomia fusciventris Zhang Niu, sp. nov. from Fujian Province is described as a new species; N. aurata Bingham, 1897 and N. wahisi Pauly, 2009 are recorded from China for the first time, and the male of N. pieli Cockerell, 1931 is newly reported. An updated diagnosis is provided for the subgenus Nomia (Gnathonomia) to accommodate Chinese endemic species which lack the white integumental bands found in most previously described forms. A key to the known Chinese species is provided.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4768.1.5DOI Listing
April 2020

The wild bees (Hymenoptera, Apoidea) of the island of Cyprus.

Zookeys 2020 6;924:1-114. Epub 2020 Apr 6.

Department of Agricultural Sciences, Biotechnology and Food Science, Cyprus University of Technology, Arch. Kyprianos 30, Limassol, 3036, Cyprus Cyprus University of Technology Limassol Cyprus.

Cyprus, the third largest island in the Mediterranean, constitutes a biodiversity hotspot with high rates of plant endemism. The wild bees of the island were studied extensively by the native George Mavromoustakis, a world-renowned bee taxonomist, who collected extensively on the island from 1916 to 1957 and summarised his results in a series of eight Cyprus-specific papers published from 1949 ["1948"] to 1957. The current work represents the first modern checklist of the wild bees of Cyprus, based on a compilation of previous publications, museum specimens and authors' recent collections. Overall, 369 verified wild bee species have been recorded on the island, with eleven species reported from Cyprus for the first time. The island hosts all six of the globally widespread bee families, with Apidae represented by 110 species, Megachilidae with 91, Andrenidae with 76, Halictidae with 72, Colletidae with 19, and Melittidae with 1. Twenty-one of the recorded bee species are endemic (i.e., 5.7 % endemism rate) and Cyprus ranks third after Lesvos and Sicily in known bee species richness among the Mediterranean islands. Previously unpublished records from various locations on Cyprus for 156 previously reported bee species are also provided in the study. The current work provides a baseline for future studies of wild bee diversity on the island of Cyprus and neighbouring regions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3897/zookeys.924.38328DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7154044PMC
April 2020

Overview of the bee genus Trachusa Panzer, 1804 (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Megachilidae: Anthidiini) from China with description of three new species.

Zootaxa 2019 Jul 24;4646(2):zootaxa.4646.2.3. Epub 2019 Jul 24.

Key Laboratory of Zoological Systematics and Evolution, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1 Beichen West Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, P. R. China..

The Chinese bees of the genus Trachusa Panzer, 1804 are reviewed. Nine species are confirmed to occur in China. Three new species are described and illustrated: Trachusa (Paraanthidium) pingdaensis Niu, sp. nov., T. (P.) staabi Niu, sp. nov. and T. (P.) wuae Niu, sp. nov. The distribution of each species is given. An illustrated key to the Chinese species is provided.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4646.2.3DOI Listing
July 2019

Revision of the bee genus Bathanthidium Mavromoustakis (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Megachilidae: Anthidiini) with description of a new species from China.

Zootaxa 2019 Aug 15;4657(1):zootaxa.4657.1.3. Epub 2019 Aug 15.

Key Laboratory of Zoological Systematics and Evolution, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1 Beichen West Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, P. R. China..

This revision of the bee genus Bathanthidium Mavromoustakis, 1953, treats 12 species, with 11 recorded from China, including Bathanthidium fengkaiense Niu Zhu, sp. nov.. Two species are proposed as new combinations in genus Bathanthidium: Anthidium (s. str.) bicolor Wu, 2004, A. (s. str.) monganshanensis Wu, 2004. The two new combinations (B. bicolor, B. monganshanense) are in Bathanthidium (Manthidium), previously considered to include only the type species from Burma and Laos (published records from northeastern India and Malaysia are based on misinterpreted localities). Trachusa (Paraanthidium) concavum (Wu, 1962) and Stelis siamensis Friese, 1925 are synonymized with B. binghami (Friese, 1901). Bathanthidium circinatum Wu, 2004 is transferred to Pseudoanthidium Friese forming the new combination P. (s. str.) circinatum (Wu, 2004). The distribution of each species is given, new distribution sites are marked by asterisk (*) especially. Our results confirm that the genus Bathanthidium has higher species diversity than previously documented and that this diversity is centered in China.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4657.1.3DOI Listing
August 2019

Modelling Highly Biodiverse Areas in Brazil.

Sci Rep 2019 04 23;9(1):6355. Epub 2019 Apr 23.

Departamento de Ecologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Goiás, Goiânia, Goiás, Brazil.

Traditional conservation techniques for mapping highly biodiverse areas assume there to be satisfactory knowledge about the geographic distribution of biodiversity. There are, however, large gaps in biological sampling and hence knowledge shortfalls. This problem is even more pronounced in the tropics. Indeed, the use of only a few taxonomic groups or environmental surrogates for modelling biodiversity is not viable in mega-diverse countries, such as Brazil. To overcome these limitations, we developed a comprehensive spatial model that includes phylogenetic information and other several biodiversity dimensions aimed at mapping areas with high relevance for biodiversity conservation. Our model applies a genetic algorithm tool for identifying the smallest possible region within a unique biota that contains the most number of species and phylogenetic diversity, as well as the highest endemicity and phylogenetic endemism. The model successfully pinpoints small highly biodiverse areas alongside regions with knowledge shortfalls where further sampling should be conducted. Our results suggest that conservation strategies should consider several taxonomic groups, the multiple dimensions of biodiversity, and associated sampling uncertainties.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-42881-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6479156PMC
April 2019

Ecological filtering in scrub fragments restructures the taxonomic and functional composition of native bee assemblages.

Ecology 2019 05 3;100(5):e02654. Epub 2019 Apr 3.

Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego, MC0116, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, California, 92093, USA.

Predicting the long-term consequences of habitat alteration for the preservation of biodiversity and ecosystem function requires an understanding of how ecological filters drive taxonomic and functional biodiversity loss. Here, we test a set of predictions concerning the role of ecological filters in restructuring native bee assemblages inhabiting fragmented coastal sage scrub ecosystems in southern California, USA. In 2011 and 2012, we collected native bees in scrub habitat belonging to two treatment categories: large natural reserves and small habitat fragments embedded in an urban landscape. We compared bee assemblages in reserve and fragment sites with respect to their taxonomic and functional alpha diversity, beta diversity, assemblage composition, and mean geographical range size estimated via distribution maps compiled for this study from digitized specimen records. We found multiple lines of evidence that ecological filtering drove bee diversity loss in fragments: a disproportionate loss of functional diversity relative to taxonomic diversity, shifts in assemblage composition driven largely by the preferential extirpation of reserve-associated indicator species, and disproportionate loss of range-restricted species. However, we found no evidence of taxonomic or functional homogenization across fragment bee assemblages, suggesting that filtering was not sufficiently strong to cause a subset of functional traits (and their associated species) to dominate assemblages in fragments. Our results suggest that ecological filtering altered bee assemblages in habitat fragments, even when such fragments contained well-preserved native plant assemblages, underscoring the importance of preserving large areas of natural habitat for the conservation of bees (especially range-restricted taxa) and their associated ecological functions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecy.2654DOI Listing
May 2019

Patient Understanding of the Neuropsychiatric Risks Associated with Branded Bupropion Hydrochloride Products Used for Smoking Cessation.

Drugs Real World Outcomes 2018 Sep;5(3):181-191

Global Clinical Safety and Pharmacovigilance, GSK, Stockley Park, Uxbridge, Middlesex, UK.

Background: Bupropion hydrochloride (Zyban) is an effective aid to smoking cessation; however, its use has previously been associated with neuropsychiatric adverse events. Here we report results of the patient Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behavior survey that forms part of the Year 7 Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy (REMS) assessment for Zyban.

Objective: Assess participants' understanding of the neuropsychiatric risks associated with branded bupropion hydrochloride products that are used for smoking cessation, as described in the Medication Guides.

Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among patients ≥ 18 years of age, who had used or filled a prescription for branded bupropion hydrochloride for smoking cessation in the past 6 months. Participants were recruited through an online panel, pharmacy network, or by healthcare provider referral, and invited to complete a survey containing questions regarding the risks associated with the use of branded bupropion hydrochloride products, and whether they had received and read the Medication Guide. The study aimed for ≥ 80% of participants to respond correctly to each question regarding neuropsychiatric risks.

Results: From the 50,985 survey invitations distributed, 1017 participants responded, of whom 144 were eligible and 142 completed the survey. Over 80% of participants correctly responded to most neuropsychiatric risk questions. Approximately three-quarters of participants received the Medication Guide when they last filled their prescription, of whom over half read the Medication Guide at that time.

Conclusions: Participants enrolled in this Year 7 REMS survey had good understanding of the neuropsychiatric risks associated with using branded bupropion hydrochloride products for smoking cessation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40801-018-0140-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6119167PMC
September 2018

Publisher Correction: Biodiversity conservation gaps in the Brazilian protected areas.

Sci Rep 2018 Mar 19;8(1):5004. Epub 2018 Mar 19.

Departamento de Zoologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais - UFMG, Av. Antonio Carlos 6627, CEP 31270-901, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.

A correction to this article has been published and is linked from the HTML and PDF versions of this paper. The error has been fixed in the paper.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-22953-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5859184PMC
March 2018

Taxonomy based on science is necessary for global conservation.

Authors:
Scott A Thomson Richard L Pyle Shane T Ahyong Miguel Alonso-Zarazaga Joe Ammirati Juan Francisco Araya John S Ascher Tracy Lynn Audisio Valter M Azevedo-Santos Nicolas Bailly William J Baker Michael Balke Maxwell V L Barclay Russell L Barrett Ricardo C Benine James R M Bickerstaff Patrice Bouchard Roger Bour Thierry Bourgoin Christopher B Boyko Abraham S H Breure Denis J Brothers James W Byng David Campbell Luis M P Ceríaco István Cernák Pierfilippo Cerretti Chih-Han Chang Soowon Cho Joshua M Copus Mark J Costello Andras Cseh Csaba Csuzdi Alastair Culham Guillermo D'Elía Cédric d'Udekem d'Acoz Mikhail E Daneliya René Dekker Edward C Dickinson Timothy A Dickinson Peter Paul van Dijk Klaas-Douwe B Dijkstra Bálint Dima Dmitry A Dmitriev Leni Duistermaat John P Dumbacher Wolf L Eiserhardt Torbjørn Ekrem Neal L Evenhuis Arnaud Faille José L Fernández-Triana Emile Fiesler Mark Fishbein Barry G Fordham André V L Freitas Natália R Friol Uwe Fritz Tobias Frøslev Vicki A Funk Stephen D Gaimari Guilherme S T Garbino André R S Garraffoni József Geml Anthony C Gill Alan Gray Felipe G Grazziotin Penelope Greenslade Eliécer E Gutiérrez Mark S Harvey Cornelis J Hazevoet Kai He Xiaolan He Stephan Helfer Kristofer M Helgen Anneke H van Heteren Francisco Hita Garcia Norbert Holstein Margit K Horváth Peter H Hovenkamp Wei Song Hwang Jaakko Hyvönen Melissa B Islam John B Iverson Michael A Ivie Zeehan Jaafar Morgan D Jackson J Pablo Jayat Norman F Johnson Hinrich Kaiser Bente B Klitgård Dániel G Knapp Jun-Ichi Kojima Urmas Kõljalg Jenő Kontschán Frank-Thorsten Krell Irmgard Krisai-Greilhuber Sven Kullander Leonardo Latella John E Lattke Valeria Lencioni Gwilym P Lewis Marcos G Lhano Nathan K Lujan Jolanda A Luksenburg Jean Mariaux Jader Marinho-Filho Christopher J Marshall Jason F Mate Molly M McDonough Ellinor Michel Vitor F O Miranda Mircea-Dan Mitroiu Jesús Molinari Scott Monks Abigail J Moore Ricardo Moratelli Dávid Murányi Takafumi Nakano Svetlana Nikolaeva John Noyes Michael Ohl Nora H Oleas Thomas Orrell Barna Páll-Gergely Thomas Pape Viktor Papp Lynne R Parenti David Patterson Igor Ya Pavlinov Ronald H Pine Péter Poczai Jefferson Prado Divakaran Prathapan Richard K Rabeler John E Randall Frank E Rheindt Anders G J Rhodin Sara M Rodríguez D Christopher Rogers Fabio de O Roque Kevin C Rowe Luis A Ruedas Jorge Salazar-Bravo Rodrigo B Salvador George Sangster Carlos E Sarmiento Dmitry S Schigel Stefan Schmidt Frederick W Schueler Hendrik Segers Neil Snow Pedro G B Souza-Dias Riaan Stals Soili Stenroos R Douglas Stone Charles F Sturm Pavel Štys Pablo Teta Daniel C Thomas Robert M Timm Brian J Tindall Jonathan A Todd Dagmar Triebel Antonio G Valdecasas Alfredo Vizzini Maria S Vorontsova Jurriaan M de Vos Philipp Wagner Les Watling Alan Weakley Francisco Welter-Schultes Daniel Whitmore Nicholas Wilding Kipling Will Jason Williams Karen Wilson Judith E Winston Wolfgang Wüster Douglas Yanega David K Yeates Hussam Zaher Guanyang Zhang Zhi-Qiang Zhang Hong-Zhang Zhou

PLoS Biol 2018 03 14;16(3):e2005075. Epub 2018 Mar 14.

International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature, Singapore.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pbio.2005075DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5851535PMC
March 2018

The bees of Michigan (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Anthophila), with notes on distribution, taxonomy, pollination, and natural history.

Zootaxa 2017 Nov 21;4352(1):1-160. Epub 2017 Nov 21.

Department of Entomology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, USA 48824. Current address: Department of Entomology, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB, Canada R3T 2N2..

The state of Michigan occupies an area between the Great Plains and the northeastern United States, bordering four Great Lakes, with diverse biogeographical regions. Michigan also has the second most diverse agriculture in the country, with many crops that depend on bees for pollination. This unique combination provides a wide range of opportunities for bees to persist, yet there is no current published checklist of these important insects. This study was conducted to provide the first annotated checklist of the bee (Apoidea: Anthophila) fauna of Michigan, summarizing aspects of their taxonomy and behavior and to provide provisional conservation assessment. The list was compiled from a critical review of published literature, museum specimens, and database records, supplemented by new collections. In total, 465 species are included in the checklist, including 38 new records, however evidence for 13 species is poor, several more species require taxonomic revision, and the presence of additional species is expected. The exotic megachilid species Megachile apicalis Spinola, M. pusilla Pérez (=concinna Smith, auct.) and Osmia taurus Smith are reported from Michigan for the first time. New state records of native species include Anthidium tenuiflorae Cockerell and Nomada alpha alpha Cockerell, both previously undocumented from eastern North America, and Nomada sphaerogaster Cockerell, which has rarely been recognized. The taxonomy of some bee species is clarified by the formal publication of 11 new synonymies (some previously reported online or in manuscripts). The following list cites junior synonyms first followed by the valid name: Andrena chippewaensis Mitchell 1960 = A. (Simandrena) wheeleri Graenicher 1904; Osmia hendersoni Cockerell 1907 = O. (Melanosmia) tarsata Provancher 1888; Osmia michiganensis Mitchell 1962 = O. (M.) subarctica Cockerell 1912 (new status, removed from synonymy with O. (M.) tersula Cockerell 1912); Sphecodes persimilis Lovell and Cockerell 1907 = S. davisii Robertson 1897; Sphecodes knetschi Cockerell 1898 = S. dichrous Smith 1853; Sphecodes carolinus Mitchell 1956 = S. coronus Mitchell 1956; Sphecodes stygius Robertson 1893 = S. mandibularis Cresson 1872; Sphecodes prostygius Mitchell 1960 = S. fattigi Mitchell 1956; Stelis vernalis Mitchell 1962 = S. coarctatus Crawford 1916; and Stelis michiganensis Mitchell 1962 = S. foederalis Smith 1854. Poorly known Andrena (Cnemidandrena) are discussed, including A. parnassiae Cockerell, a new state record, A. robervalensis Mitchell, and the extralimital A. runcinatae Cockerell. Of these, only A. robervalensis was considered in the subgeneric revision, but we recognize all three as valid species pending further study. Nomada binotata (Robertson 1903) and N. quadrimaculata (Robertson 1903) are removed from synonymy with N. ovata (Robertson 1903), based on examination of the lectotypes. A new species, Triepeolus eliseae Rightmyer, the eastern representative of the verbesinae species group, is described. A putative undescribed species, Osmia aff. trevoris, is documented, but requires additional study for its status to be fully resolved. A rich bee fauna is documented that includes geographically-restricted species, rare and regionally-declining species, and economically-important species, providing information for ongoing conservation planning and future analysis of trends in bee populations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4352.1.1DOI Listing
November 2017

Urbanization-induced habitat fragmentation erodes multiple components of temporal diversity in a Southern California native bee assemblage.

PLoS One 2017 30;12(8):e0184136. Epub 2017 Aug 30.

Division of Biological Sciences, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California, United States of America.

Despite a large number of ecological studies that document diversity loss resulting from anthropogenic disturbance, surprisingly few consider how disturbance affects temporal patterns of diversity that result from seasonal turnover of species. Temporal dynamics can play an important role in the structure and function of biological assemblages. Here, we investigate the temporal diversity patterns of bee faunas in Southern California coastal sage scrub ecosystems that have been extensively fragmented by urbanization. Using a two-year dataset of 235 bee species (n = 12,036 specimens), we compared 1-ha plots in scrub fragments and scrub reserves with respect to three components of temporal diversity: overall plot-level diversity pooled over time (temporal gamma diversity), diversity at discrete points in time (temporal alpha diversity), and seasonal turnover in assemblage composition (temporal beta diversity). Compared to reserves, fragments harbored bee assemblages with lower species richness and assemblage evenness both when summed across temporal samples (i.e., lower temporal gamma diversity) and at single points in time (i.e., lower temporal alpha diversity). Bee assemblages in fragments also exhibited reduced seasonal turnover (i.e., lower temporal beta diversity). While fragments and reserves did not differ in overall bee abundance, bee abundance in fragments peaked later in the season compared to that in reserves. Our results argue for an increased awareness of temporal diversity patterns, as information about the distinct components of temporal diversity is essential both for characterizing the assemblage dynamics of seasonal organisms and for identifying potential impacts of anthropogenic disturbance on ecosystem function through its effects on assemblage dynamics.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0184136PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5576854PMC
October 2017

Biodiversity conservation gaps in the Brazilian protected areas.

Sci Rep 2017 08 22;7(1):9141. Epub 2017 Aug 22.

Departamento de Zoologia, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais - UFMG, Av. Antonio Carlos 6627, CEP 31270-901, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.

Although Brazil is a megadiverse country and thus a conservation priority, no study has yet quantified conservation gaps in the Brazilian protected areas (PAs) using extensive empirical data. Here, we evaluate the degree of biodiversity protection and knowledge within all the Brazilian PAs through a gap analysis of vertebrate, arthropod and angiosperm occurrences and phylogenetic data. Our results show that the knowledge on biodiversity in most Brazilian PAs remain scant as 71% of PAs have less than 0.01 species records per km. Almost 55% of Brazilian species and about 40% of evolutionary lineages are not found in PAs, while most species have less than 30% of their geographic distribution within PAs. Moreover, the current PA network fails to protect the majority of endemic species. Most importantly, these results are similar for all taxonomic groups analysed here. The methods and results of our countrywide assessment are suggested to help design further inventories in order to map and secure the key biodiversity of the Brazilian PAs. In addition, our study illustrates the most common biodiversity knowledge shortfalls in the tropics.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-08707-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5567310PMC
August 2017

Cardiovascular adverse events in the drug-development program of bupropion for smoking cessation: A systematic retrospective adjudication effort.

Clin Cardiol 2017 Oct 12;40(10):899-906. Epub 2017 Jun 12.

Stanford Center for Clinical Research, Department of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California.

Background: In 2011, the US Food and Drug Administration requested that GlaxoSmithKline perform retrospective adjudication of cardiovascular (CV) events reported in the bupropion drug-development trials for smoking cessation.

Hypothesis: Retrospective adjudication of clinical trial data will not increase the identification of adverse events.

Methods: We performed a comprehensive retrospective analysis of adverse events in 19 previously completed controlled US clinical trials of bupropion marketed for the treatment of smoking cessation, yielding 9479 subjects (5290 bupropion, 2927 placebo, 1018 active control [ACT], and 244 treated concurrently with bupropion and ACT). All adverse events were sent to the Duke Clinical Research Institute for adjudication by Clinical Events Classification (CEC) physician reviewers. The primary endpoint was a composite of major adverse CV events: CV death, nonfatal myocardial infarction (MI), and nonfatal stroke.

Results: Overall, 416 nonfatal CV events in 366 subjects, and 22 deaths, were identified and processed for adjudication. Of these, 7 nonfatal MIs (4 bupropion, 3 placebo, 0 ACT), 5 nonfatal strokes (1 bupropion, 3 placebo, 1 ACT), and 9 CV deaths (4 bupropion, 4 placebo, 1 ACT) were confirmed by the CEC Committee. The primary endpoint occurred in 3/4297 (0.07%) subjects in the bupropion group and in 4/2927 (0.14%) subjects in the placebo group (log-rank P value: 0.613).

Conclusions: CV events in bupropion clinical trials for smoking cessation were uncommon, with no observed increase among subjects assigned to bupropion vs placebo. However, this effort was limited by a paucity of quality data.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/clc.22744DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6490529PMC
October 2017

The relative importance of pollinator abundance and species richness for the temporal variance of pollination services.

Ecology 2017 Jul 12;98(7):1807-1816. Epub 2017 Jun 12.

Department of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, 08901, USA.

The relationship between biodiversity and the stability of ecosystem function is a fundamental question in community ecology, and hundreds of experiments have shown a positive relationship between species richness and the stability of ecosystem function. However, these experiments have rarely accounted for common ecological patterns, most notably skewed species abundance distributions and non-random extinction risks, making it difficult to know whether experimental results can be scaled up to larger, less manipulated systems. In contrast with the prolific body of experimental research, few studies have examined how species richness affects the stability of ecosystem services at more realistic, landscape scales. The paucity of these studies is due in part to a lack of analytical methods that are suitable for the correlative structure of ecological data. A recently developed method, based on the Price equation from evolutionary biology, helps resolve this knowledge gap by partitioning the effect of biodiversity into three components: richness, composition, and abundance. Here, we build on previous work and present the first derivation of the Price equation suitable for analyzing temporal variance of ecosystem services. We applied our new derivation to understand the temporal variance of crop pollination services in two study systems (watermelon and blueberry) in the mid-Atlantic United States. In both systems, but especially in the watermelon system, the stronger driver of temporal variance of ecosystem services was fluctuations in the abundance of common bee species, which were present at nearly all sites regardless of species richness. In contrast, temporal variance of ecosystem services was less affected by differences in species richness, because lost and gained species were rare. Thus, the findings from our more realistic landscapes differ qualitatively from the findings of biodiversity-stability experiments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecy.1876DOI Listing
July 2017

Dynamic microbiome evolution in social bees.

Sci Adv 2017 Mar 29;3(3):e1600513. Epub 2017 Mar 29.

Department of Integrative Biology, University of Texas, Austin, Austin, TX 78712, USA.

The highly social (eusocial) corbiculate bees, comprising the honey bees, bumble bees, and stingless bees, are ubiquitous insect pollinators that fulfill critical roles in ecosystem services and human agriculture. Here, we conduct wide sampling across the phylogeny of these corbiculate bees and reveal a dynamic evolutionary history behind their microbiota, marked by multiple gains and losses of gut associates, the presence of generalist as well as host-specific strains, and patterns of diversification driven, in part, by host ecology (for example, colony size). Across four continents, we found that different host species have distinct gut communities, largely independent of geography or sympatry. Nonetheless, their microbiota has a shared heritage: The emergence of the eusocial corbiculate bees from solitary ancestors appears to coincide with the acquisition of five core gut bacterial lineages, supporting the hypothesis that host sociality facilitates the development and maintenance of specialized microbiomes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.1600513DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5371421PMC
March 2017

Bee communities along a prairie restoration chronosequence: similar abundance and diversity, distinct composition.

Ecol Appl 2017 04 13;27(3):705-717. Epub 2017 Mar 13.

Plant Science and Conservation, Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, Illinois, 60091, USA.

Recognition of the importance of bee conservation has grown in response to declines of managed honey bees and some wild bee species. Habitat loss has been implicated as a leading cause of declines, suggesting that ecological restoration is likely to play an increasing role in bee conservation efforts. In the midwestern United States, restoration of tallgrass prairie has traditionally targeted plant community objectives without explicit consideration for bees. However, restoration of prairie vegetation is likely to provide ancillary benefits to bees through increased foraging and nesting resources. We investigated community assembly of bees across a chronosequence of restored eastern tallgrass prairies and compared patterns to those in control and reference habitats (old fields and prairie remnants, respectively). We collected bees for 3 yr and measured diversity and abundance of in-bloom flowering plants, vegetation structure, ground cover, and surrounding land use as predictors of bee abundance and bee taxonomic and functional diversity. We found that site-level variables, but not site type or restoration age, were significant predictors of bee abundance (bloom diversity, P = 0.004; bare ground cover, P = 0.02) and bee diversity (bloom diversity, P = 0.01). There were significant correlations between overall composition of bee and blooming plant communities (Mantel test, P = 0.002), and both plant and bee assemblages in restorations were intermediate between those of old fields and remnant prairies. Restorations exhibited high bee beta diversity, i.e., restored sites' bee assemblages were taxonomically and functionally differentiated from each other. This pattern was strong in younger restorations (<20 yr old), but absent from older restorations (>20 yr), suggesting restored prairie bee communities become more similar to one another and more similar to remnant prairie bee communities over time with the arrival of more species and functional groups of bees. Our results indicate that old fields, restorations, and remnants provide habitat for diverse and abundant bee communities, but continued restoration of old fields will help support and conserve bee communities more similar to reference bee communities characteristic of remnant prairies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/eap.1481DOI Listing
April 2017

Measuring partner choice in plant-pollinator networks: using null models to separate rewiring and fidelity from chance.

Ecology 2016 Nov;97(11):2925-2931

Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources, Rutgers University, 14 College Farm Road, New Brunswick, New Jersey, 08901, USA.

Recent studies of mutualistic networks show that interactions between partners change across years. Both biological mechanisms and chance could drive these patterns, but the relative importance of these factors has not been separated. We established a field experiment consisting of 102 monospecific plots of 17 native plant species, from which we collected 6713 specimens of 52 bee species over four years. We used these data and a null model to determine whether bee species' foraging choices varied more or less over time beyond the variation expected by chance. Thus we provide the first quantitative definition of rewiring and fidelity as these terms are used in the literature on interaction networks. All 52 bee species varied in plant partner choice across years, but for 27 species this variation was indistinguishable from random partner choice. Another 11 species showed rewiring, varying more across years than expected by chance, while 14 species showed fidelity, indicating that they both prefer certain plant species and are consistent in those preferences across years. Our study shows that rewiring and fidelity both exist in mutualist networks, but that once sampling effects have been accounted for, they are less common than has been reported in the ecological literature.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ecy.1574DOI Listing
November 2016

The city as a refuge for insect pollinators.

Conserv Biol 2017 02;31(1):24-29

Green Infrastructure Research Group, The University of Melbourne, Parkville Victoria 3010, Australia.

Research on urban insect pollinators is changing views on the biological value and ecological importance of cities. The abundance and diversity of native bee species in urban landscapes that are absent in nearby rural lands evidence the biological value and ecological importance of cities and have implications for biodiversity conservation. Lagging behind this revised image of the city are urban conservation programs that historically have invested in education and outreach rather than programs designed to achieve high-priority species conservation results. We synthesized research on urban bee species diversity and abundance to determine how urban conservation could be repositioned to better align with new views on the ecological importance of urban landscapes. Due to insect pollinators' relatively small functional requirements-habitat range, life cycle, and nesting behavior-relative to larger mammals, we argue that pollinators put high-priority and high-impact urban conservation within reach. In a rapidly urbanizing world, transforming how environmental managers view the city can improve citizen engagement and contribute to the development of more sustainable urbanization.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cobi.12840DOI Listing
February 2017

Revision of the Anthidiellum Cockerell, 1904 of China (Hymenoptera, Apoidea, Megachilidae, Anthidiini).

Zootaxa 2016 Jun 23;4127(2):327-44. Epub 2016 Jun 23.

Key Laboratory of Zoological Systematics and Evolution, Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 1 Beichen West Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing, 100101, P. R. China.; Email:

The resin bees of the genus Anthidiellum Cockerell, 1904 are revised for China. Seven species are confirmed to occur in China including five new combinations: A. (Pycnanthidium) carinatum (Wu, 1962) comb. nov., A. (P.) coronum (Wu, 2004a) comb. nov., A. (P.) latipes (Bingham, 1897) comb. nov., A. (Clypanthidium) popovii (Wu, 1962) comb. nov., and A. (Anthidiellum) yunnanensis (Wu, 1962) comb. nov.. These five species had previously been classified as Trachusa (Paraanthidium), which is characterized by much larger-bodied bees (only four species of Trachusa (Paraanthidium) are confirmed to occur in China after this study; others reported in the literature were misplaced to genus). Additionally, Anthidiellum ludingensis Wu, 1993, and Anthidiellum (Anthidiellum) xinjiangensis Wu, 2004b, are removed from Anthidiellum forming the new combinations Pseudoanthidium (Pseudoanthidium) ludingense (Wu, 1993) and P. (P.) xinjiangense (Wu, 2004b), thus extending the range of the genus in China to include Sichuan. Illustrations and a key to known Chinese Anthidiellum species are provided.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4127.2.5DOI Listing
June 2016

Neuropsychiatric safety and efficacy of varenicline, bupropion, and nicotine patch in smokers with and without psychiatric disorders (EAGLES): a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled clinical trial.

Lancet 2016 Jun 22;387(10037):2507-20. Epub 2016 Apr 22.

Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.

Background: Substantial concerns have been raised about the neuropsychiatric safety of the smoking cessation medications varenicline and bupropion. Their efficacy relative to nicotine patch largely relies on indirect comparisons, and there is limited information on safety and efficacy in smokers with psychiatric disorders. We compared the relative neuropsychiatric safety risk and efficacy of varenicline and bupropion with nicotine patch and placebo in smokers with and without psychiatric disorders.

Methods: We did a randomised, double-blind, triple-dummy, placebo-controlled and active-controlled (nicotine patch; 21 mg per day with taper) trial of varenicline (1 mg twice a day) and bupropion (150 mg twice a day) for 12 weeks with 12-week non-treatment follow-up done at 140 centres (clinical trial centres, academic centres, and outpatient clinics) in 16 countries between Nov 30, 2011, and Jan 13, 2015. Participants were motivated-to-quit smokers with and without psychiatric disorders who received brief cessation counselling at each visit. Randomisation was computer generated (1:1:1:1 ratio). Participants, investigators, and research personnel were masked to treatment assignments. The primary endpoint was the incidence of a composite measure of moderate and severe neuropsychiatric adverse events. The main efficacy endpoint was biochemically confirmed continuous abstinence for weeks 9-12. All participants randomly assigned were included in the efficacy analysis and those who received treatment were included in the safety analysis. The trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov (number NCT01456936) and is now closed.

Findings: 8144 participants were randomly assigned, 4116 to the psychiatric cohort (4074 included in the safety analysis) and 4028 to the non-psychiatric cohort (3984 included in the safety analysis). In the non-psychiatric cohort, 13 (1·3%) of 990 participants reported moderate and severe neuropsychiatric adverse events in the varenicline group, 22 (2·2%) of 989 in the bupropion group, 25 (2·5%) of 1006 in the nicotine patch group, and 24 (2·4%) of 999 in the placebo group. The varenicline-placebo and bupropion-placebo risk differences (RDs) for moderate and severe neuropsychiatric adverse events were -1·28 (95% CI -2·40 to -0·15) and -0·08 (-1·37 to 1·21), respectively; the RDs for comparisons with nicotine patch were -1·07 (-2·21 to 0·08) and 0·13 (-1·19 to 1·45), respectively. In the psychiatric cohort, moderate and severe neuropsychiatric adverse events were reported in 67 (6·5%) of 1026 participants in the varenicline group, 68 (6·7%) of 1017 in the bupropion group, 53 (5·2%) of 1016 in the nicotine patch group, and 50 (4·9%) of 1015 in the placebo group. The varenicline-placebo and bupropion-placebo RDs were 1·59 (95% CI -0·42 to 3·59) and 1·78 (-0·24 to 3·81), respectively; the RDs versus nicotine patch were 1·22 (-0·81 to 3·25) and 1·42 (-0·63 to 3·46), respectively. Varenicline-treated participants achieved higher abstinence rates than those on placebo (odds ratio [OR] 3·61, 95% CI 3·07 to 4·24), nicotine patch (1·68, 1·46 to 1·93), and bupropion (1·75, 1·52 to 2·01). Those on bupropion and nicotine patch achieved higher abstinence rates than those on placebo (OR 2·07 [1·75 to 2·45] and 2·15 [1·82 to 2·54], respectively). Across cohorts, the most frequent adverse events by treatment group were nausea (varenicline, 25% [511 of 2016 participants]), insomnia (bupropion, 12% [245 of 2006 participants]), abnormal dreams (nicotine patch, 12% [251 of 2022 participants]), and headache (placebo, 10% [199 of 2014 participants]). Efficacy treatment comparison did not differ by cohort.

Interpretation: The study did not show a significant increase in neuropsychiatric adverse events attributable to varenicline or bupropion relative to nicotine patch or placebo. Varenicline was more effective than placebo, nicotine patch, and bupropion in helping smokers achieve abstinence, whereas bupropion and nicotine patch were more effective than placebo.

Funding: Pfizer and GlaxoSmithKline.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)30272-0DOI Listing
June 2016

The Allometry of Bee Proboscis Length and Its Uses in Ecology.

PLoS One 2016 17;11(3):e0151482. Epub 2016 Mar 17.

Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Natural Resources, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, United States of America.

Allometric relationships among morphological traits underlie important patterns in ecology. These relationships are often phylogenetically shared; thus quantifying allometric relationships may allow for estimating difficult-to-measure traits across species. One such trait, proboscis length in bees, is assumed to be important in structuring bee communities and plant-pollinator networks. However, it is difficult to measure and thus rarely included in ecological analyses. We measured intertegular distance (as a measure of body size) and proboscis length (glossa and prementum, both individually and combined) of 786 individual bees of 100 species across 5 of the 7 extant bee families (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Anthophila). Using linear models and model selection, we determined which parameters provided the best estimate of proboscis length. We then used coefficients to estimate the relationship between intertegular distance and proboscis length, while also considering family. Using allometric equations with an estimation for a scaling coefficient between intertegular distance and proboscis length and coefficients for each family, we explain 91% of the variance in species-level means for bee proboscis length among bee species. However, within species, individual-level intertegular distance was a poor predictor of individual proboscis length. To make our findings easy to use, we created an R package that allows estimation of proboscis length for individual bee species by inputting only family and intertegular distance. The R package also calculates foraging distance and body mass based on previously published equations. Thus by considering both taxonomy and intertegular distance we enable accurate estimation of an ecologically and evolutionarily important trait.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0151482PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4795761PMC
August 2016

Delivery of crop pollination services is an insufficient argument for wild pollinator conservation.

Nat Commun 2015 Jun 16;6:7414. Epub 2015 Jun 16.

Centre for Agri-Environmental Research, School of Agriculture, Policy and Development, University of Reading, Reading RG6 6AR, UK.

There is compelling evidence that more diverse ecosystems deliver greater benefits to people, and these ecosystem services have become a key argument for biodiversity conservation. However, it is unclear how much biodiversity is needed to deliver ecosystem services in a cost-effective way. Here we show that, while the contribution of wild bees to crop production is significant, service delivery is restricted to a limited subset of all known bee species. Across crops, years and biogeographical regions, crop-visiting wild bee communities are dominated by a small number of common species, and threatened species are rarely observed on crops. Dominant crop pollinators persist under agricultural expansion and many are easily enhanced by simple conservation measures, suggesting that cost-effective management strategies to promote crop pollination should target a different set of species than management strategies to promote threatened bees. Conserving the biological diversity of bees therefore requires more than just ecosystem-service-based arguments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/ncomms8414DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4490361PMC
June 2015