Large-range movements of neotropical orchid bees observed via radio telemetry

Martin Wikelski, Jerry Moxley, Alexander Eaton-Mordas, Margarita Maria Lopez-Uribe, Richard Holland, David Moskowitz, David W. Roubik, Roland Kays

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

79 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Neotropical orchid bees (Euglossini) are often cited as classic examples of trapline-foragers with potentially extensive foraging ranges. If long-distance movements are habitual, rare plants in widely scattered locations may benefit from euglossine pollination services. Here we report the first successful use of micro radio telemetry to track the movement of an insect pollinator in a complex and forested environment. Our results indicate that individual male orchid bees (Exaerete frontalis) habitually use large rainforest areas (at least 42-115 ha) on a daily basis. Aerial telemetry located individuals up to 5 km away from their core areas, and bees were often stationary, for variable periods, between flights to successive localities. These data suggest a higher degree of site fidelity than what may be expected in a free living male bee, and has implications for our understanding of biological activity patterns and the evolution of forest pollinators.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere10738
JournalPloS one
Volume5
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 17 2010

Fingerprint

Telemetry
Bees
radio telemetry
Telemetering
Radio
Apoidea
pollinating insects
Bioactivity
Antennas
Pollination
philopatry
telemetry
rain forests
Insects
bioactive properties
pollination
flight
foraging

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

Cite this

Wikelski, M., Moxley, J., Eaton-Mordas, A., Lopez-Uribe, M. M., Holland, R., Moskowitz, D., ... Kays, R. (2010). Large-range movements of neotropical orchid bees observed via radio telemetry. PloS one, 5(5), [e10738]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0010738
Wikelski, Martin ; Moxley, Jerry ; Eaton-Mordas, Alexander ; Lopez-Uribe, Margarita Maria ; Holland, Richard ; Moskowitz, David ; Roubik, David W. ; Kays, Roland. / Large-range movements of neotropical orchid bees observed via radio telemetry. In: PloS one. 2010 ; Vol. 5, No. 5.
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Wikelski, M, Moxley, J, Eaton-Mordas, A, Lopez-Uribe, MM, Holland, R, Moskowitz, D, Roubik, DW & Kays, R 2010, 'Large-range movements of neotropical orchid bees observed via radio telemetry', PloS one, vol. 5, no. 5, e10738. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0010738

Large-range movements of neotropical orchid bees observed via radio telemetry. / Wikelski, Martin; Moxley, Jerry; Eaton-Mordas, Alexander; Lopez-Uribe, Margarita Maria; Holland, Richard; Moskowitz, David; Roubik, David W.; Kays, Roland.

In: PloS one, Vol. 5, No. 5, e10738, 17.09.2010.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Wikelski M, Moxley J, Eaton-Mordas A, Lopez-Uribe MM, Holland R, Moskowitz D et al. Large-range movements of neotropical orchid bees observed via radio telemetry. PloS one. 2010 Sep 17;5(5). e10738. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0010738