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Data from: Wildflower strips enhance pollination in adjacent strawberry crops at the small scale


Ganser, Dominik; Mayr, Barbara; Albrecht, Matthias; Knop, Eva (2018), Data from: Wildflower strips enhance pollination in adjacent strawberry crops at the small scale, Dryad, Dataset,


Wildflower strips (WFS) are increasingly used to counteract the negative consequences of agricultural intensification. To date, it is poorly understood how WFS promote flower visitation and pollination services in nearby insect-pollinated crops. We therefore ask whether WFS enhance pollination service in adjacent strawberry crops, and how such an effect depends on the distance from WFS. Over two years we examined the effects of experimentally sown WFS compared to grassy strips on pollination services in adjacent strawberry (Fragaria ananassa) crops across a total of 19 study sites. Moreover, we examined flower visitation, species richness and community composition of the most important insect pollinator taxa at different within-field locations varying in distance to WFS. We found increased pollination services at the edge of WFS compared to locally reduced pollination services at the centre, which resulted in no significant difference in seed set between WFS and control fields. Total flower visits and species richness of pollinators were higher in WFS than in adjacent strawberry fields. Moreover, wild bee visitation was enhanced in adjacent strawberry crops near WFS compared to field centres, and intermediate at field edges near grassy strips. Our study demonstrates that diverse WFS can increase wild bee visitation and pollination services in the field edges of adjacent strawberry crops, but that overall visitation and pollination services do not increase. Moreover, our findings show that major pollinator taxa exhibit distinct responses, resulting in a shift of pollinator community composition as a function of distance to WFS with direct effects on crop pollination. Our results that WFS enhance rather than reduce crop pollination services near WFS should distract possible concerns by farmers that WFS may locally absorb rather than export crop pollinators. Considering the spatial restricted enhancement of wild bees and associated pollination services we suggest to establish WFS in the centre of crop fields.

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