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Landscape configurational heterogeneity by small-scale agriculture, not crop diversity, maintains pollinators and plant reproduction in western Europe

Hass, Annika L.; Kormann, Urs G.; Tscharntke, Teja; Clough, Yann LU ; Baillod, Aliette Bosem; Sirami, Clélia; Fahrig, Lenore; Martin, Jean Louis; Baudry, Jacques and Bertrand, Colette, et al. (2018) In Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 285(1872).
Abstract

Agricultural intensification is one of the main causes for the current biodiversity crisis. While reversing habitat loss on agricultural land is challenging, increasing the farmland configurational heterogeneity (higher field border density) and farmland compositional heterogeneity (higher crop diversity) has been proposed to counteract some habitat loss. Here, we tested whether increased farmland configurational and compositional heterogeneity promote wild pollinators and plant reproduction in 229 landscapes located in four major western European agricultural regions. High-field border density consistently increased wild bee abundance and seed set of radish (Raphanus sativus), probably through enhanced connectivity. In particular, we... (More)

Agricultural intensification is one of the main causes for the current biodiversity crisis. While reversing habitat loss on agricultural land is challenging, increasing the farmland configurational heterogeneity (higher field border density) and farmland compositional heterogeneity (higher crop diversity) has been proposed to counteract some habitat loss. Here, we tested whether increased farmland configurational and compositional heterogeneity promote wild pollinators and plant reproduction in 229 landscapes located in four major western European agricultural regions. High-field border density consistently increased wild bee abundance and seed set of radish (Raphanus sativus), probably through enhanced connectivity. In particular, we demonstrate the importance of crop-crop borders for pollinator movement as an additional experiment showed higher transfer of a pollen analogue along crop-crop borders than across fields or along semi-natural crop borders. By contrast, high crop diversity reduced bee abundance, probably due to an increase of crop types with particularly intensive management. This highlights the importance of crop identity when higher crop diversity is promoted. Our results show that small-scale agricultural systems can boost pollinators and plant reproduction. Agri-environmental policies should therefore aim to halt and reverse the current trend of increasing field sizes and to reduce the amount of crop types with particularly intensive management.

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publication status
published
subject
keywords
Bee, Compositional heterogeneity, Field size, Hoverfly, Landscape heterogeneity, Pollen transfer
in
Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
volume
285
issue
1872
publisher
Royal Society
external identifiers
  • scopus:85043575354
ISSN
0962-8452
DOI
10.1098/rspb.2017.2242
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
1cf6b1b0-77d3-49a2-bbd1-7a0b829aad32
date added to LUP
2018-03-27 14:37:34
date last changed
2018-07-08 04:30:49
@article{1cf6b1b0-77d3-49a2-bbd1-7a0b829aad32,
  abstract     = {<p>Agricultural intensification is one of the main causes for the current biodiversity crisis. While reversing habitat loss on agricultural land is challenging, increasing the farmland configurational heterogeneity (higher field border density) and farmland compositional heterogeneity (higher crop diversity) has been proposed to counteract some habitat loss. Here, we tested whether increased farmland configurational and compositional heterogeneity promote wild pollinators and plant reproduction in 229 landscapes located in four major western European agricultural regions. High-field border density consistently increased wild bee abundance and seed set of radish (Raphanus sativus), probably through enhanced connectivity. In particular, we demonstrate the importance of crop-crop borders for pollinator movement as an additional experiment showed higher transfer of a pollen analogue along crop-crop borders than across fields or along semi-natural crop borders. By contrast, high crop diversity reduced bee abundance, probably due to an increase of crop types with particularly intensive management. This highlights the importance of crop identity when higher crop diversity is promoted. Our results show that small-scale agricultural systems can boost pollinators and plant reproduction. Agri-environmental policies should therefore aim to halt and reverse the current trend of increasing field sizes and to reduce the amount of crop types with particularly intensive management.</p>},
  articleno    = {20172242},
  author       = {Hass, Annika L. and Kormann, Urs G. and Tscharntke, Teja and Clough, Yann and Baillod, Aliette Bosem and Sirami, Clélia and Fahrig, Lenore and Martin, Jean Louis and Baudry, Jacques and Bertrand, Colette and Bosch, Jordi and Brotons, Lluís and Bure, Françoise and Georges, Romain and Giralt, David and Marcos-García, María and Ricarte, Antonio and Siriwardena, Gavin and Batáry, Péter},
  issn         = {0962-8452},
  keyword      = {Bee,Compositional heterogeneity,Field size,Hoverfly,Landscape heterogeneity,Pollen transfer},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {02},
  number       = {1872},
  publisher    = {Royal Society},
  series       = {Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences},
  title        = {Landscape configurational heterogeneity by small-scale agriculture, not crop diversity, maintains pollinators and plant reproduction in western Europe},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2017.2242},
  volume       = {285},
  year         = {2018},
}