Wednesday, 17 November 2004 - 9:30 AM

Introduction of exotic bees for crop pollination

Carlos H. Vergara,, Universidad de las Américas, Puebla, Departmento de Química y Biología, 72820 Santa Catarina Mártir, Peubla, Mexico

Exotic species of bees have been introduced into different countries as crop pollinators. Well-known examples are the alfalfa leafcutting bee (Megachile rotundata) and several species of bumblebees (Bombus spp.). In most cases, these imports have been done without prior assessing of possible negative impacts of the pollinators on native ecosystems. Other species have been accidentally introduced, or introduced for purposes other than pollination of crops. The best known of such introductions is the African honey bee, imported to Brazil in the 1950’s. African honey bees (Apis mellifera scutellata) have become important pollinators of crops like coffee or avocado in tropical and subtropical regions of the Americas. This review presents currently available information on the success of introduced pollinators and their effects on native ecosystems. It also examines the viability of using native pollinators to prevent unnecessary introduction of exotic species.

Species 1: Hymenoptera Apidae Bombus (bumblebee)
Species 2: Hymenoptera Apidae Apis mellifera scutellata (African honey bee)
Species 3: Hymenoptera Megachilidae Megachile rotundata (alfalfa leafcutting bee)
Keywords: environmental impact assessment

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

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