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Bees thrive where it’s hot and dry : A unique biodiversity hotspot located in North America

ScienceDaily (May 5, 2021 )

Titre : Bees thrive where it’s hot and dry : A unique biodiversity hotspot located in North America

ScienceDaily (May 5, 2021 )

Résumé
The United States-Mexico border traverses through large expanses of unspoiled land in North America, including a newly discovered worldwide hotspot of bee diversity. Concentrated in 16 km2 of protected Chihuahuan Desert are more than 470 bee species, a remarkable 14% of the known United States bee fauna.

Descriptif
Scientists studying native U.S. bees have long recognized that the Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts of North America, home to species with interesting life histories, have high bee biodiversity. Exactly how many species has largely remained speculation. Together with students from Mexico, Guatemala and the United States, the authors made repeated collections over multiple years, identifying more than 70,000 specimens.

Without such intensive collecting, a full picture of the bee diversity would not have been possible. Most of these bee species are solitary, without a queen or workers, which visit flowers over a 2-4 week lifespan and specialize on pollen and nectar from one to a few plants. Furthermore, these desert species experience periodic drought, which the immature stages survive by going into dormancy for years, much like the seeds of the desert plants they pollinate.

Story Source  : Pensoft Publishers

Annonce (ScienceDaily)

Page publiée le 27 juin 2021