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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Logan, Utah » Pollinating Insect-Biology, Management, Systematics Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #326443

Research Project: Managing and Conserving Diverse Bee Pollinators for Sustainable Crop Production and Wildland Preservation

Location: Pollinating Insect-Biology, Management, Systematics Research

Title: The native bee fauna of the Palouse Prairie (Hymenoptera: Apoidea)

item RHOADES, PAUL - University Of Idaho
item Griswold, Terry
item Ikerd, Harold
item WAITS, LISETTE - University Of Idaho
item BOSQUE-PEREZ, NILSA - University Of Idaho
item EIGENBRODE, SANFORD - University Of Idaho

Submitted to: Journal of Melittology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/14/2016
Publication Date: 4/3/2017
Citation: Rhoades, P., Griswold, T.L., Ikerd, H.W., Waits, L., Bosque-Perez, N., Eigenbrode, S.D. 2017. The native bee fauna of the Palouse Prairie (Hymenoptera: Apoidea). Journal of Melittology. 66:1-20.

Interpretive Summary: Very little is known about the composition of bee communities in the Pacific Northwest, and particularly the bees of the highly modified habitat of the Palouse Prairie in northern Idaho and southeastern Washington. A recent study of the bees found on remnant fragments of intact Palouse Prairie shows that there is a rich bee fauna despite the fragmentation of the environment. The extent to which this represents the original bee fauna is unknown because there were no significant collections before conversion of the prairie to agriculture. The results are relevant to regional conservation efforts and may be instructive for other fragmented grasslands found across the globe.

Technical Abstract: While the range and general composition of North American bee fauna have been mostly described based on random collections, bee communities associated with specific habitats are largely uncharacterized. This report describes the community of native bees currently found in remnant fragments of the Palouse Prairie of northern Idaho and southeastern Washington State. Native bees were collected using standardized collection techniques including blue vane traps, colored pan traps and aerial netting. More than 13,000 individuals were collected representing at least 179 species in 29 genera. These data provide the most thorough characterization of the bee fauna of this vulnerable ecosystem, and community level information on bee species of unknown conservation status. These results are relevant to regional conservation efforts and more broadly are representative of conditions in fragmented grassland surrounded by intense agriculture, a common global land use pattern of conservation concern.