Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 552293
Title Use of visual and olfactory cues of flowers of two brassicaceous species by insect pollinators
Author(s) Barragán-Fonseca, Katherine Y.; Loon, Joop J.A. van; Dicke, Marcel; Lucas-Barbosa, Dani
Source Ecological Entomology (2019). - ISSN 0307-6946
Department(s) Laboratory of Entomology
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2019
Keyword(s) Odour cues - plant volatiles - pollinators - post-pollination changes - visual cues

1. Pollinating insects exploit visual and olfactory cues associated with flower traits indicative of flower location and reward quality. Pollination can induce changes in these flower-associated cues, thereby influencing the behaviour of flower visitors. 2. This study investigated the main cues exploited by the syrphid fly Episyrphus balteatus and the butterfly Pieris brassicae when visiting flowers of Brassica nigra and Raphanus sativus plants. Whether pollen is used as a cue and whether pollination-induced changes affect flower volatile emission and the behavioural responses of the two pollinator species were also studied. 3. Pollinator preference was investigated by offering visual and olfactory cues individually as well as simultaneously in two-choice bioassays. Plant treatments included emasculation, hand-pollination and untreated control plants. The composition of flower volatiles from pollinated and unpollinated control plants was analysed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. 4. Both pollinators exhibited a strong bias for visual cues over olfactory cues. Neither pollinator used pollen as a cue. However, E. balteatus discriminated between newly opened and long-open flowers at short distance only when pollen was available. Flower visits by pollinators were influenced by pollination-induced changes in B. nigra but not R. sativus flowers. Pieris brassicae only responded to pollination-induced changes when visual and olfactory cues were offered simultaneously. The blend of volatiles emitted by B. nigra, but not R. sativus inflorescences was affected by pollination. 5. Collectively, the findings of this study show that different pollinators exploit different visual and olfactory traits when searching for flowers of two brassicaceous plant species.

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