Forest reserves and riparian corridors help maintain orchid bee (Hymenoptera: Euglossini) communities in oil palm plantations in Brazil

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College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science


Orchid bees (Apidae, Euglossini) are important pollinators in the Amazon forest. In eastern Brazilian Amazon, secondary forest and pastures are being replaced by oil palm plantations. Here, we tested the role of forest reserves and riparian corridors in maintaining orchid bees. We sampled bees in three different soil-type uses, comparing richness, abundance, and assemblage composition. Estimated richness was lowest in palm plantations than in forest reserves and riparian corridors on diversity of orchid bees. Riparian corridors had the highest abundance, followed by reserves, and oil palm plantations. Bee assemblage also varied with land cover, with the reserves having the most distinct composition. We also identified indicator bees for primary forest. Our results demonstrate riparian corridors and forest reserves can maintain orchid bees in oil palm landscapes.

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