Insect pollination improves yield of Shea (Vitellaria paradoxa subsp. paradoxa) in the agroforestry parklands of West Africa

Authors

  • Jane C Stout School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin, Ireland
  • Issa Nombre Laboratoire de Biologie et Ecologie Végétales, Université Ouaga I Pr Joseph KI-ZERBO, Institut des sciences, 01 BP 1757 Ouagadougou 01, Burkina Faso
  • Bernd de Bruijn Vogelbescherming Nederland - BirdLife in The Netherlands, P.O. Box 925, 3700 AX Zeist, The Netherlands
  • Aoife Delaney School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Republic of Ireland
  • Dzigbodi Adzo Doke Faculty of Natural Resources and Environment, University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana
  • Thomas Gyimah Ghana Wildlife Society, P.O. Box 13252, Accra, Ghana
  • Francois Kamano BirdLife International, David Attenborough Building, Pembroke Street, Cambridge, CB2 3QZ, UK
  • Ruth Kelly School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin, Ireland
  • Peter Lovett Form International, Bevrijdingsweg 3, 8051 EN Hattem, The Netherlands
  • Elaine Marshall BirdLife International, David Attenborough Building, Pembroke Street, Cambridge, CB2 3QZ, UK
  • Latif Iddrisu Nasare Faculty of Natural Resources and Environment, University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana
  • Adama Nana Naturama, 01 B.P. 6133, 01, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
  • Japheth Roberts Ghana Wildlife Society, P.O. Box 13252, Accra, Ghana
  • Prudence Tankoano Naturama, 01 B.P. 6133, 01, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
  • Cath Tayleur RSPB Centre for Conservation Science, The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DL, UK
  • David Thomas BirdLife International, David Attenborough Building, Pembroke Street, Cambridge, CB2 3QZ, UK
  • Juliet Vickery RSPB Centre for Conservation Science, The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DL, UK
  • Peter Kwapong Department of Conservation Biology and Entomology, University of Cape Coast and International Stingless Bee Centre, Cape Coast, Ghana

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.26786/1920-7603(2018)two

Abstract

Pollinator decline, driven primarily by habitat degradation, has the potential to reduce the quantity and quality of pollinator-dependent crops produced across the world.  Vitellaria paradoxa, a socio-economically important tree which grows across the sub-Saharan drylands of Africa, produces seeds from which shea butter is extracted. However, the habitats in which this tree grows are threatened with degradation, potentially impacting its ability to attract sufficient pollinators and to produce seeds. The flowers of V. paradoxa are insect-pollinated, and we investigated flower visitors in six sites in southern Burkina Faso and northern Ghana and tested whether plants were capable of fruit set in the absence of pollinators. We found that the majority of flower visitors (88%) were bees, most frequently small social stingless bees (Hypotrigona gribodoi), but native honey bees (Apis mellifera adansonii) were also common visitors to flowers early in the morning. The number of fruit produced per inflorescence was significantly lower when insects were excluded during flowering by bagging, but any fruits and seeds that were produced in bagged treatments were of similar weight to un-bagged ones. We conclude that conservation of habitat to protect social bees is important to maintain pollination services to V. paradoxa and other fruit-bearing trees and cultivated crops on which local livelihoods depend.

 

Author Biographies

Jane C Stout, School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin, Ireland

 

Issa Nombre, Laboratoire de Biologie et Ecologie Végétales, Université Ouaga I Pr Joseph KI-ZERBO, Institut des sciences, 01 BP 1757 Ouagadougou 01, Burkina Faso

 

Bernd de Bruijn, Vogelbescherming Nederland - BirdLife in The Netherlands, P.O. Box 925, 3700 AX Zeist, The Netherlands

 

Aoife Delaney, School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Republic of Ireland

 

Dzigbodi Adzo Doke, Faculty of Natural Resources and Environment, University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana

 

Thomas Gyimah, Ghana Wildlife Society, P.O. Box 13252, Accra, Ghana

 

Francois Kamano, BirdLife International, David Attenborough Building, Pembroke Street, Cambridge, CB2 3QZ, UK

 

Ruth Kelly, School of Natural Sciences, Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin, Ireland

 

Peter Lovett, Form International, Bevrijdingsweg 3, 8051 EN Hattem, The Netherlands

 

Elaine Marshall, BirdLife International, David Attenborough Building, Pembroke Street, Cambridge, CB2 3QZ, UK

 

Latif Iddrisu Nasare, Faculty of Natural Resources and Environment, University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana

 

Adama Nana, Naturama, 01 B.P. 6133, 01, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso

 

Japheth Roberts, Ghana Wildlife Society, P.O. Box 13252, Accra, Ghana

 

Prudence Tankoano, Naturama, 01 B.P. 6133, 01, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso

 

Cath Tayleur, RSPB Centre for Conservation Science, The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DL, UK

 

David Thomas, BirdLife International, David Attenborough Building, Pembroke Street, Cambridge, CB2 3QZ, UK

 

Juliet Vickery, RSPB Centre for Conservation Science, The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DL, UK

 

Peter Kwapong, Department of Conservation Biology and Entomology, University of Cape Coast and International Stingless Bee Centre, Cape Coast, Ghana

 

Published

2018-03-14

How to Cite

Stout, J. C., Nombre, I., de Bruijn, B., Delaney, A., Doke, D. A., Gyimah, T., Kamano, F., Kelly, R., Lovett, P., Marshall, E., Nasare, L. I., Nana, A., Roberts, J., Tankoano, P., Tayleur, C., Thomas, D., Vickery, J., & Kwapong, P. (2018). Insect pollination improves yield of Shea (Vitellaria paradoxa subsp. paradoxa) in the agroforestry parklands of West Africa. Journal of Pollination Ecology, 22, 11–20. https://doi.org/10.26786/1920-7603(2018)two

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Section

Articles