Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Bees, fruits and money: Decline of pollinators will have severe impact on nature and humankind

Date:
September 4, 2012
Source:
Pensoft Publishers
Summary:
Globally we are witnessing a decline in pollinators, such as wild bees, honeybees and hover flies, caused by the destruction and fragmentation of habitats, agricultural intensification and use of pesticides, introduction of novel diseases and competing alien species, and climate change. The combined impacts of these drivers will accelerate the loss of pollinator diversity and potentially disrupt plant-pollinator interactions.

Sunflowers crops rely heavily on pollinators.
Credit: Stela Lazarova, Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 / Creative Commons license

Two thirds of the crops humans use for food production and the majority of wild plant species depend on pollination by insects such as bees and hover-flies. This ecosystem service, however, provided by nature to humans for free, is increasingly failing. As an example, after 3000 years of sustainable agriculture, farmers in the Chinese province Sichuan have to pollinate apple flowers themselves by using pollination sticks -- brushes made of chicken feathers and cigarette filter. This is one small example of a problem occurring world-wide, including Europe.

Related Articles


The work has been carried out in part part by STEP, an EU-funded Framework program Seven (FP7) project.

A global survey of several studies demonstrated a severe decline of pollinators and provision of pollination services in a wide range of intensively managed temperate and tropical agroecosystems. Considering that global crop production worth 153 billion Euros (for Europe 22 billion Euros) relies on insect pollination, the pollinators' decline has direct impact on the stability of food production and consumer prices, and might also have serious consequences for human health.

A decrease of fruit and vegetable availability could impact the health of consumers worldwide. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has set a lower limit of 400 grams per capita per day for fruit and vegetable consumption. Some studies demonstrated than even now more than 50% of the European households fall below this recommendation. In the case of pollinator declines and increasing food prices, this situation is very likely to worsen.

"Finally, wild pollinators provide an inestimable contribution to maintain the diversity of wild plants. Importantly, a wide range of pollinators with different preferences to flowers and different daily and seasonal activity is necessary to ensure pollination. Relying on managed honeybees only, which are also in decline by themselves, is a very risky strategy," said Prof. Ingolf Steffan-Dewenter from the University of Würzburg, Germany. "Therefore conservation of pollinators' habitats and implementation of agro-environmental practices to enhance wild plants resources and nesting sites for bees in agricultural landscapes are vitally important!"


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Pensoft Publishers. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Pensoft Publishers. "Bees, fruits and money: Decline of pollinators will have severe impact on nature and humankind." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120904101128.htm>.
Pensoft Publishers. (2012, September 4). Bees, fruits and money: Decline of pollinators will have severe impact on nature and humankind. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120904101128.htm
Pensoft Publishers. "Bees, fruits and money: Decline of pollinators will have severe impact on nature and humankind." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120904101128.htm (accessed November 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Classic Hollywood Memorabilia Goes Under the Hammer

Classic Hollywood Memorabilia Goes Under the Hammer

Reuters - Entertainment Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) — The iconic piano from "Casablanca" and the Cowardly Lion suit from "The Wizard of Oz" fetch millions at auction. Sara Hemrajani reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) — Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Feast Your Eyes: Lamb Chop Sent Into Space from UK

Feast Your Eyes: Lamb Chop Sent Into Space from UK

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Nov. 25, 2014) — Take a stab at this -- stunt video shows a lamb chop's journey from an east London restaurant over 30 kilometers into space. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins