From birds to bees: applying video observation techniques to invertebrate pollinators
Observation is a critical element of behavioural ecology and ethology. Here, we propose a similar set of techniques to enhance the study of the diversity patterns of invertebrate pollinators and associated plant species. In a body of avian research, cameras are set up on nests in blinds to examine chick and parent interactions. This avoids observer bias, minimizes interference, and provides numerous other benefits including timestamps, the capacity to record frequency and duration of activities, and provides a permanent archive of activity for later analyses. Hence, we propose that small video cameras in blinds can also be used to continuously monitor pollinator activity on plants thereby capitalizing on those same benefits. This method was proofed in 2010 in the alpine in BC, Canada on target focal plant species and on open mixed assemblages of plant species. Apple ipod nanos successfully recorded activity for an entire day at a time totalling 450 hours and provided sufficient resolution and field of view to both identify pollinators to recognizable taxonomic units and monitor movement and visitation rates at a scale of view of approximately 50 cm2. This method is not a replacement for pan traps or sweep nets but an opportunity to enhance these datasets with more detailed, finer-resolution data. Importantly, the test of this specific method also indicates that far more hours of observation - using any method - are likely required than most current ecological studies published to accurately estimate pollinator diversity.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2012 C J Lortie, Amber Budden, Anya Reid
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
JPE is an open access journal which means that all content is freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
1) Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
2) Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
3) Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).
To assure a broader targeted audience, content will be included into databases (such as EBSCO) and directories (such as DOAJ).