Weed-insect pollinator networks as bio-indicators of ecological sustainability in agriculture. A review
The intensification of agricultural practices contributes to the decline of many taxa such as insects and wild plants. Weeds are serious competitors for crop production and are thus controlled. Nonetheless, weeds enhance floral diversity in agricultural landscapes. Weeds provide food for insects in exchange for pollination. The stability of mutualistic interactions in pollination networks depends on conservation of insect pollinator and weed communities. Some agricultural practices can destabilize interactions and thus modify the stability of pollination networks. Therefore, more knowledge on weed-insect networks is needed. Here, we review the interactions involved in insect visits to weed flowers in temperate arable lands. Our main findings are that (1) weed pollination by insects has a key role in maintaining weed communities in arable lands; (2) weed-insect pollinator interactions are modulated by the flowers’ features and their quality which are attracting insects; (3) most weeds are associated with generalist insect pollinators; and (4) even if weed-pollinator networks are largely mutualistic, some antagonist networks can be observed when deception occurs. We propose three weed-insect pollinator networks as potential bio-indicators to evaluate the ecological sustainability of arable land management strategies in temperate areas: (1) Geometridae and Bombyliidae species visiting Caryophyllaceae, (2) Papilionidae foraging on Apiaceae, and (3) Syrphidae visiting Asteraceae.... [Show full abstract]
Keywordsarthropods; biodiverstiy; pollination; weed management; wildflowers; Biodiversity; Agronomy & Agriculture
© INRA and Springer-Verlag France 2016 © The Author(s) 2015. This article is published with open access at Springerlink.com Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.