Location: Vegetable Crops Research Unit
Project Number: 5090-21000-054-06
Start Date: Sep 01, 2013
End Date: Aug 31, 2017
Pollinator movements by distinct pollinators in contrasting landscapes will be measured experimentally in alfalfa, an outcrossed insect-pollinated perennial crop, to determine how pollinator movements are affected by pollinator type and landscape characteristics (objective 1). Analyses of these data will identify the main factors that influence pollinator movements and such information will be used in model development (objective 2). The simulation-based model uses an approach developed by Levey et al. (Science 2005 309: 146-148; J. Ecol. 2008 96: 599-608) who demonstrated that behavior observed at a local scale can be used to adequately predict dispersal at a landscape scale. Pollinator movements will be simulated and combined with data on pollen deposition and subsequent seed development to examine pollen dispersal and gene flow in different landscapes (objective 2). Lastly, gene flow will be measured experimentally for distinct pollinators in different landscapes to validate the model (objective 3).