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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Logan, Utah » Pollinating Insect-Biology, Management, Systematics Research » Research » Research Project #433465

Research Project: Habitat Connectivity of Bumble Bees in the Western United States

Location: Pollinating Insect-Biology, Management, Systematics Research

Project Number: 2080-21000-017-10-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2017
End Date: Aug 31, 2020

Objective:
The broad objectives of the project are to 1) Quantify genetic diversity within and among populations of bumble bees at high elevation sites in western North America, 2) Determine the habitat suitability range of montane bumble bee species, 3) Apply a landscape genetic approach to distinguish genetic approach to understand the degree of gene flow among populations, and 4) Develop predictive models of bumble bee habitat and gene flow rates based on future climate models.

Approach:
Objectives will be met by: 1) developing habitat suitability models using a maximum entropy approach to predict habitat from specimen data housed by ARS in the National Pollinating Insect Collection; 2) determine genetic diversity of montane bumble bee species by field collecting bumble bees and genotyping bees using microsatellite loci and mitochondrial markers and applying population genetic statistics; 3) using landscape genetics to model the rates of gene flow among disjoint populations of bees and 4) using bio-climatic data to project restrictions or expansions in bee habitat and genetic connectivity under future climate models for 2030, 2050 and beyond.