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Title: An investigation of pollen transfer by selected pollinating insects
Author: Swan, M. C.
Awarding Body: University College of Swansea
Current Institution: Swansea University
Date of Award: 1986
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Insect mediated pollen dispersal was studied in Althaea officinalis, Succisa pratensis, Chrysanthemum coronarium, Matricaria maritima and Matthiola sinuata using fluorescent dust as a pollen analogue or tracer. The species where chosen because of their different spectra of pollinators, so that the effects on pollen transfer of different behaviour patterns in different insect groups could be assessed. Pollinator behaviour was also studied by direct observation of insects foraging in both natural and artificial plant populations. Individual pollinators were marked in many cases, and both general behaviour patterns, and differences between individuals were studied. Evidence is presented to indicate that foraging insects generally move into the wind, and that pollen flow is therefore generally upwind. Also, most pollen transfers occur within a range of ten metres or often considerably less, although occasional movements to much greater distances are recorded. The behaviour patterns of various insect groups are discussed, with particular emphasis on comparing and contrasting bumblebees, butterflies, moths and hoverflies in terms of constancy, directionality and distance of flight. While many generalisations can be made, it becomes clear that it is also very important to understand that individuality can be significant. Thus, different individuals within a species can often exhibit a degree of constancy or discrimination. In some species this may result in discrimination by the population as a whole, while others may have a homogeneous overall behaviour pattern.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available