Assessment of Floristic Quality and Plant-pollinator Interactions on Powerline Right-of-way at Lillian Anderson Arboretum
Cazier, Amy M.
MetadataShow full item record
Populations of pollinators, and more specifically bees have declined recently and due to their vital roles in our ecosystems and agriculture industry (Potts et al., 2010). Efforts to protect, conserve and even enhance their abundance and diversity have become a global concern. One way to promote pollinator populations involves providing the floral resources of which they are reliant on for nutrients and successful reproduction (Wratten et al., 2012). A pollinator habitat enhancement project is scheduled to begin on the powerline right-of-way (ROW) at Kalamazoo College’s Lilian Anderson Arboretum. Before the implementation of such projects, it is useful to establish a baseline understanding of what floral resources are already present and the characteristics of current plant-pollinator interaction networks in order to measure changes after enhancement is underway. A systematic floral survey was conducted and identified 117 species of flowering plants on the powerline ROW. This survey informed required management needs of the area before the successful seeding of new floral resources could occur and identified areas on the powerline ROW which were unique representations of a pre-settlement environment and should left alone in respect to adding new flowering plant species. Plant-pollinator interaction metrics showed overall generalist qualities of current networks and revealed specialist traits of the plant Stachys hyssopifolia (Hyssop Hedgenettle) and the genera Bombus (bumble bees). Focal plant-pollinator interactions demonstrated many current flowering plant species rely on bumble bee pollinators for reproduction and that further work should be done to better understand bumble bee habits and enhance their habitats.