Decades of native bee biodiversity surveys at Pinnacles National Park highlight the importance of monitoring natural areas over time

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Joan M MeinersOlivia Messinger Carril

Abstract

Thousands of species of bees are in global decline, yet research addressing the ecology and status of these wild pollinators lags far behind work being done to address similar impacts on the managed honey bee. This knowledge gap is especially glaring in natural areas, despite knowledge that protected habitats harbor and export diverse bee communities into nearby croplands where their pollination services have been valued at over $3 billion per year. Surrounded by ranches and farmlands, Pinnacles National Park in the Inner South Coast Range of California contains intact Mediterranean chaparral shrubland. This habitat type is among the most valuable for bee biodiversity worldwide, as well as one of the most vulnerable to agricultural conversion, urbanization and climate change. Pinnacles National Park is also one of a very few locations where extensive native bee inventory efforts have been repeated over time. This park thus presents a valuable and rare opportunity to monitor long-term trends and baseline variability of native bees in natural habitats. Fifteen years after a species inventory marked Pinnacles as a biodiversity hotspot for native bees, we resurveyed these native bee communities over two flowering seasons using a sy...Continue Reading

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