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Utilization of Hairy Footed Flower Bee Anthophora plumipes (Hymenoptera: Apidae) for Pollination of Greenhouse Strawberry
Pollination efficiency of hairy footed flower bee Anthophora plumipes for greenhouse strawberry was evaluated in a small greenhouse located in Shimane University, Matsue, Japan (lat. 35˚29', long. 133˚27' and elevation 170 m). Twenty five female and six male bees were released in a greenhouse on April 15, 2014. Red clay soil blocks were provided as the nesting materials. Two hundred and fifty pots of strawberry (Fragaria annanasa) were allocated for the following three treatments: 1) no supplementary pollination (control), 2) hand pollination, and 3) bee pollination. Both male and female bees effectively foraged flowers throughout the day. Rate of fertilized seed by the bee pollination was significantly greater than no supplementary pollination (control) and similar to that in the hand pollinated flowers. Quality of the fruits (evaluated based on the shape and deformity) was also improved by the bee pollination. A. plumipes effectively pollinated strawberry flowers in the greenhouse and could be developed as an alternative pollinator for this crop.
Anthophora plumipes, Greenhouse, Strawberry, Pollination, Fruit Quality.
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