Contrasting impacts of highly invasive plant species on flower-visiting insect communities

Contrasting impacts of highly invasive plant species on flower-visiting insect communities Invasive alien plants threaten biodiversity, ecosystems and service provision worldwide. They can have positive and negative direct and indirect effects on herbivorous insects, including those that provide pollination services. Here, we quantify how three highly invasive plant species (Heracleum mantegazzianum, Impatiens glandulifera and Fallopia japonica) influence the availability of floral resources and flower-visiting insect communities. We compared invaded with comparable uninvaded areas to assess floral resources and used pan-trapping to quantify insect communities. Only F. japonica influenced floral resource availability: sites invaded by this species had a higher flowering plant species richness and abundance of open floral units than uninvaded sites, probably due to its late flowering and the paucity of other flowering species at this time of year. Fallopia japonica was also associated with higher abundances of bumblebees, higher overall insect diversity and higher hoverfly diversity than uninvaded areas. Differences in pollinator communities were also associated with I. glandulifera and H. mantegazzianum, despite there being no detectable differences in floral resources at these sites. Specifically, there were more bumblebees and solitary bees in I. glandulifera sites, and a higher overall diversity of insects, particularly hoverflies. By contrast, H. mantegazzianum sites had a lower abundance of solitary bees and hoverflies. These findings confirm that invasive plant species have a range of species-specific effects on ecological communities. This supports the emerging view that control of invasive species, as required under international obligations, is not simple and that potential losses and gains for biodiversity must be carefully evaluated on a case-by-case basis. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Biodiversity and Conservation Springer Journals

Contrasting impacts of highly invasive plant species on flower-visiting insect communities

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2018 by Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature
Subject
Life Sciences; Biodiversity; Ecology; Conservation Biology/Ecology; Climate Change/Climate Change Impacts
ISSN
0960-3115
eISSN
1572-9710
D.O.I.
10.1007/s10531-018-1525-y
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Invasive alien plants threaten biodiversity, ecosystems and service provision worldwide. They can have positive and negative direct and indirect effects on herbivorous insects, including those that provide pollination services. Here, we quantify how three highly invasive plant species (Heracleum mantegazzianum, Impatiens glandulifera and Fallopia japonica) influence the availability of floral resources and flower-visiting insect communities. We compared invaded with comparable uninvaded areas to assess floral resources and used pan-trapping to quantify insect communities. Only F. japonica influenced floral resource availability: sites invaded by this species had a higher flowering plant species richness and abundance of open floral units than uninvaded sites, probably due to its late flowering and the paucity of other flowering species at this time of year. Fallopia japonica was also associated with higher abundances of bumblebees, higher overall insect diversity and higher hoverfly diversity than uninvaded areas. Differences in pollinator communities were also associated with I. glandulifera and H. mantegazzianum, despite there being no detectable differences in floral resources at these sites. Specifically, there were more bumblebees and solitary bees in I. glandulifera sites, and a higher overall diversity of insects, particularly hoverflies. By contrast, H. mantegazzianum sites had a lower abundance of solitary bees and hoverflies. These findings confirm that invasive plant species have a range of species-specific effects on ecological communities. This supports the emerging view that control of invasive species, as required under international obligations, is not simple and that potential losses and gains for biodiversity must be carefully evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Journal

Biodiversity and ConservationSpringer Journals

Published: Mar 8, 2018

References

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